The explosion of geek culture has had several effects on the entertainment industry. We can now count on comic book movies being made every year. More and more geek themed television shows are hitting mainstream and on-demand channels. Not to mention, comic conventions are growing and expanding.
Case and point: Salt Lake City launched their first comic convention back in 2013, and over 70,000 people attended it. Since then, they've topped over 125,000 attendees at their event. This year Las Vegas is hosting The Amazing Las Vegas Comic Convention, and they've already booked guests like Adam West, Burt Ward and Stan Lee.
With new conventions popping up all over the country, many people will finally get the chance to experience one for the first time. They can be fun and memorable, as well as tiring and overwhelming. That's why it's a good idea to plan ahead and try to prepare yourself for the experience. Here are some comic convention tips to consider:
Take pre-convention arrangements
Be sure to read up on all of the parking, shuttle service, convention times and entrance/exit information. If the event is taking place in your hometown, it might be a good idea to drive by the location and get a sense of where you need to go. If you're coming from out of town, take advantage of hotel and travel packages for the event. For example, if you're going to travel to that Las Vegas convention, look for hotel and flight deals on places like Vegas.com.
Be prepared to re-charge
With everything that is going on at a convention, it's easy to drain a cell phone and gain an appetite. However, it isn't always easy to stop and get food if you've got a full itinerary planned for the day. Plus, food lines at conventions can be long and time consuming. So, bring snacks to keep your energy going, and bring a portable charger for your phone.
Be sure to know the autograph rules
Autograph guidelines can vary based on the show size and the management of the convention. Sometimes, it's as easy as walking up to the table, paying and getting a signature. Other times, you might have to pre-pay for an autograph ticket, and those might be limited. There are even times where only certain guests require a ticket. So, it's best to become very familiar with how your convention handles autographs.
Lines don't have to be just about waiting
While at a convention, you're with like-minded friends. A lot of times, standing in lines is an opportunity to make new ones. Feel free to strike up a conversation with someone as you wait for a panel, autograph or photo op.
Be patient with the staff
Sometimes comic conventions can be a little chaotic (especially brand new ones). New circumstances and situations can sometimes challenge the staff. If you get frustrated, try not to take everything out on them. Many of the people that work these conventions are volunteers, and the situation may not be directly their fault.
At the end of your convention experience, you'll probably develop some of your own likes, dislikes and strategies for your next trip. At least these tips well reduce some things many people learn the hard way.
Geek topics from AoG hosts and contributors.