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5 Mistakes n00bs usually make when going to their first convention

[Makyz at his best]

Every year that I go to a convention, it seems to me the crowds keep getting younger and younger. It's great to see a fresh batch of victims fans enjoying geek culture, but I also feel a little pain in my heart when I hear or see folks that are new conventions make these very n00bish mistakes.


Mistake #1:
Not pre-registering or buying your ticket ahead of time!


I get it, some things just get planned at the very last minute, but the earlier you get your convention tickets, the better off you will be. Most events will offer tickets months in advance and at much discounted rates than what you will pay at the door. Also with online event registration you get an electronic ticket in your phone that makes it super easy to pick-up your attendee badge!

Making a line the DAY of (usually in the blistering sun) just to get the pass/ticket, that's a n00b mistake.


Mistake #2:
Cramming more than 4 people to a hotel room. 

You're young, you're strapped for money, and you figure you'll get as many of your friends to pitch in for the hotel room and you can survive with sleeping on the floor or a tub for a night or two... Maybe lack of proper rest doesn't affect people in their twenties and below as much of the rest of us, but I've reached a point where I'll put some hard earned dollars into proper sleeping space above other commodities.

Also, if you're staying with cosplayers (or doing cosplay yourself) chances are the bathroom will be a mess, there'll be wigs, boots and crazy props taking up space, and of course, somebody turning the hotel room into a last minute cosplay workshop.


Mistake #3:
Not looking at the convention programming at all.


I'm guilty of this one because my main reason to show up at conventions is just to have an excuse to wear cosplay... Usually I get to the event and I have no clue what I'm doing that day until I've picked up my badge and I'm handed a convention book with the schedule.

The past couple events I've attended, the convention actually had an app with venue maps, schedules, and even a way to add workshops and events to your plans so you can get reminders for the activities you actually want to see!

It definitely beats carrying around a big olde book that you'll probably lose a few hours in...



Mistake #4:
Deciding to take on a new costume a week before the event. 

 Woah, ok, this one is actually a veteran's mistake LOL! It never fails; you're already knee deep into a cosplay (that you still haven't finished), the event is right around the corner and then you watch something new, or your friend talks you into joining a cosplay group. You think to yourself, "Well I'm almost done with this one any way... it looks rather easy... I still got time..."

Don't do it! Don't fall into this trap! Minutes before you have to get in your car or plane to actually go to the convention you'll still be gluing pieces of your costume together, making a last minute drive to Walmart for velcro and double sided tape, and worst of all, realizing halfway through your trip THAT YOU LEFT A PART OF YOUR COSTUME AT HOME!!

Stop the madness. End the suffering. Don't start a new costume a week before the convention.


Mistake #5
Fully wearing your cosplay in the car and on the way to the convention.


I had just talked about this with my friends at The Six Podcast. Most conventions are held during the summer time, and you're likely going to have end up walking some sort of distance from wherever you parked your car to the actual venue. In some cases, you probably drove a couple hours to get there, and then have to stand outdoors in some kind of line. Heed my advice and DON'T wear ALL of your cosplay or make-up on the way there.

I'll usually wear easy to remove casual clothes or the under layers to my costume, and put on the rest of the cosplay once I'm inside the event. Bathrooms in conference centers and hotels are typically very spacious, so this is not a problem. Also, because I'm a total lightweight when it comes to wearing high heeled shoes or contact lenses, I put them on once I'm there too.

(of course all of this doesn't apply if you're staying in a hotel that is a short walk away or hosting the event)

There's nothing worse than you having your make-up melt before you've even taken a decent picture!


What are some of the mistakes you've made in your early convention years and want to warn others about? Let me know in the comments!

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