Convention Do’s and Dont’s

With convention season around the corner, I wanted to take a break from my usual style of articles here on The NES Page and share some tips for all these upcoming video game conventions! So, without further ado, here are some Do’s and Dont’s for convention attending!

These aren’t hard and fast rules, just some tips from my personal experience attending a lot of different events.

Do

Make sure to take care of yourself. It may seem silly, but make sure you eat, shower, and try to get a good night’s sleep before the event.

Don’t

Go crazy and pre-order all the photo packages. Cancellations happen all the time. Depending on the convention you go to, they may not refund your money. So, if you are going to get a couple of them, you can order them closer to the event.

Do

Bring cash. A lot of vendors at conventions do take plastic adult money, but cash is always king. It can get you slightly better rates, and it’s easier to keep track of your spending.

Don’t

Forget to bring the items you want signed! This a mistake I have made in the past. So to be safe, make sure to prep all your items the night before.

Do

Bring a Backpack. Sometimes in the excitement of going to a convention, you might forget to bring something to carry all the sweet goodies you got. Also, you can bring a folder for any sweet photos you pick up.

Don’t

Attend any Q&A Panels. Generally, in my experience, the questions that are asked in these panels are never any good, and the quality of the questions really dictate the quality of these panels. They always tend to leave you wanting something more, and you can never put your finger on it. Some gem questions I’ve heard are: “if you go back to wrestling, can I be your tag partner?”, “Do you think Rocky from the Rocky movies has ever gone to see Rocky Horror Picture Show?” Or they end up being really specific questions that seem really convoluted, and don’t really bring anything to the panel. They seem to never really hit the “sweet spot” of interesting facts or stories. It generally turns out to be a lot of the same topics they talk about in press interviews. I’m not totally against Q &As if they come at the end of the panel, they usually end up being pretty great.

Do

Bring Snacks! You will get hungry during your time at the convention. There are food vendors at the majority of conventions out there, but the cost is generally higher. Also, you might have dietary needs that can’t be met with a hotdog and a 64 gallon bottle of Dr. Pepper.

Don’t

Buy a body pillow. Seriously, don’t.

Do

Go with friends! You’re going to talk about all the cool stuff that you just saw, so why not share with some good buddies? If you use social media make sure to mention that you are going to an event, especially, if it is a large event, since there will be an increased likelihood to run into folks who are into the same stuff as you!

Don’t

Smoke. Or if you do smoke limit your smoke breaks. If you’re going with a group of people be considerate of their time and the time of the panels. Smoke breaks can end up eating up a lot of time and you can end up missing some really cool stuff.

Do

Drink water! Most of the time, when you attend an event, you will be so excited to attend that you will forget to stay hydrated. Also, with the number of people gathered together it will get hot, and the need to keep cool will sneak up on you.

Don’t

Be a jerk to booth people. This includes artists, vendors, and cos-players. These folks are trying to add to a good experience for all attendees to the convention. Plus, staff might be overwhelmed by the sheer number of folks that have showed up. A little compassion can go a long way.

Do

Buy stuff! You can usually find really neat items to express your fandom! You can also get really cool photos and autographs. It is always fun to find little keepsakes from these events! And the items you can get can be pretty limited to the event as well!

Don’t

Wing it. You have to plan ahead of time. Panels can fill up quick, as well as photo op lines, signatures, and other events as well. Also, with the rise of the conventions, you are more likely to run into one that isn’t very well organized. Always look for posted times for photo ops, signings, and panels. Be wary of any convention that doesn’t make this information available for the public. Because, you will find yourself very disappointed.

Do

Check out things you might not know a ton of stuff about. I’ve have gone to a lot of really cool panels and events that I normally wouldn’t go to and they have turned out to be the best part of the conventions. Be open to new experiences!

Do

Have fun! Make sure you take time to enjoy yourself!

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