Fan Faires can be a lot of fun, but they can also be pretty stressful, especially if you aren't used to traveling much. Here are some preparation tips from Mum that may help make your Fan Faire experience next weekend a bit more enjoyable!
Check out the luggage that you're going to use now to make sure zippers, rollers, etc. all work properly ... and to be sure that it hasn't become a haven for bugs, mice, giant dustbunnies, etc. while stored. This is also a good time to air out a new suitcase, if you would rather not have your clothes scented with the new suitcase smell.
If you're flying, check now with your airport to find out any special requirements (such as shampoos and such that are in carryons in certain size/type bottles, etc.) Generally, you can find out this information online, to save you some calling, but you want to check soon, so you're not stressing at the last minute trying to find the right containers and such.
You will likely come home with more stuff than you left with (Fan Faire T-shirt, stuff you buy from the vendors, random freebies or prizes, etc.) Keep this in mind when packing, so you have a bit of room available for bringing stuff home. (Or pack a duffel inside your suitcase that can be used for extra stuff on the way home, etc.)
Obviously, you don't want to pack days in advance, because you may need the stuff, but as you think of things like contact lens solution, asprin, etc., add it to an easy-to-find list, so you're not lying awake at 3 a.m. the day of your trip, trying to remember what it is that you forgot.
If you're bringing your laptop, remember to bring things like power cord, network cable (the ones provided in your room may not always work, etc.), and headphones (especially if you're sharing a room with someone). If you're bringing your cellphone, remember to bring the charger. Likewise with your digital camera (plus cables to transfer images to your laptop if you're bringing it, etc.)
There may be times when back-to-back events make it hard to get a timely meal. You'll be in a hotel/casino where you can buy (overpriced) munchies when a full meal will be delayed, so pack smartly if you feel the need to pack edibles. A couple sports/nutrition bars might not be a bad idea, or some trail mix (yep, Fan Faire is where Mum's Trail Mix originated!), but trying to cram in chips, salsa, etc., etc. into your bags may cost you more in cleaning bills than it will save you food prices at the Fan Faire.
Most folks tend to dress pretty casually at these events. If you feel the need for something dressier, unless you're a total fashion slave, you want something with which you can wear comfortable footwear. You'll be doing standing in lines, standing around talking, etc. and it is hard to have fun if your brand new fancy shoes are killing you.
Yes, some folks will wear them for the contest. Others will wear them for the entire Fan Faire. If you're going this route, make sure to pack carefully, and to make sure you're not trying to bring costume weaponry in your carryon bag and other silliness. Make sure to bring along stuff for emergency costume repairs as well! (Needle and thread, safety pins, etc.)
A notepad and pen are good to have along. Not only will you want to take notes in some of the panels, so you can tell your friends and guildmates about some of the way cool things that are coming down the line, but you'll also want it for writing down names, aliases, email addresses, and so on for new friends that you make at the Faire.
Some folks love giving out business cards with their contact info. If this is your sort of thing, make sure to remember to pack a couple dozen!
A strap/lanyard for carrying a water bottle around with you also isn't a bad idea, if you can scare one up in time. Vegas is dry, and you'll be doing a lot more talking than usual (and in some cases, more drinking alcohol, I suspect) and you will want to keep properly hydrated. Having water on-hand at all times is a "good thing".
Prescriptions! If you need prescription medicine for any reason, check now to be sure you have enough to last you through Fan Faire. If not, now is the time to try to get it refilled, instead of waiting until the day before you leave!
Last, but definitely not least, be ready to meet a lot of people young and old, from all sorts of backgrounds, who love the game(s) as much as you do. You won't always see eye-to-eye with them on everything, but you should find quite a bit of common ground, and a whole lot of fun at Fan Faire!
Created: 2008-08-07 04:32:02
Last Modified By: Niami Denmother
Last Modified on: 2008-08-07 04:38:54
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