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Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Sun Apr 21, 2019 3:03 pm
by RayneDeanZ
Hey everyone, Kiki here with my annual lesson’s thread!
  • Don’t worry about a schedule: I say it yearly but learn it anew, don’t follow it, just use it as a guideline.
  • Cosplay games are a family so you shouldn’t worry: I love all you new friends who I met and fought both with and against. Thank you for being so cool and making my first year in the games cool! They mean it when they say it’s a family and no one should be afraid of applying.
  • Pack early: I forgot... 60% of my quality of life items, such as a toothbrush and pajamas. I don’t normally have this issue because I pack the night before, but due to work I didn’t so I had to buy stuff Thursday once I was here.
  • Friends are the gift of con: I was on the verge of dropping from the con scene after this con. I had had too much drama at con in the past, but this year I saw so many friends and made so many new friends that I am so ready for next year and I want to reinforce that the blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:07 pm
by annaneko
- You will forget your water bottle. No seriously, you're 250% sure it was packed into your bag, and then turns out it wasn't. Place it on top of your frellin' keys by the front door or you will absolutely forget it!
On second thought... better make it TWO bottles

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Mon Apr 22, 2019 12:46 pm
by raphael39
You aren't a high school/college kid anymore. Fitting 6 people in a hotel room and sleeping on an air mattress results in lack of sleep and a hurting back.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Mon Apr 22, 2019 4:54 pm
by jupiter_bug
If you have a few hours in between events, Take a nap. Naps will help you stay awake for those late night panels. If you have no way of napping, find a place to sit, have a snack, drink some water. Just enjoy your surroundings. :D

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Mon Apr 22, 2019 5:46 pm
by JosephW
-I should avoid getting a hotel next year unless I can find one really cheap. Decided to book one night (Fri -> Sat) this year in order to stay later at the convention Friday night and get there earlier in the morning on Saturday.....neither of which ended up happening. Felt like a waste of $250. Next year I'll search for a cheaper hotel outside the city, maybe 10-15 minutes away.

-I should also look at the schedule and find some panels to attend, so that I'm not just aimlessly wandering around the con all day, and so that I can rest my legs. By Friday afternoon my legs were really sore, and by Friday night they were killing me. They didn't rest all that much overnight and so pretty much all day Saturday my legs were hurting, ultimately resulting in me skipping out on the informal dance and just going home early.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:41 am
by mylaluu
If wearing a dress with a train - expect to turn into a con broom

if said dress has things sewn onto it, it helps to pick up the stray wig hair on the floor

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Thu Apr 25, 2019 12:35 pm
by Penti
When booking a hotel and using the T to commute in, make sure it's within a reasonable distance, so you don't spend close to 2 hours just getting to the convention center. The hotel might be cheaper, but the time saved on the commute is worth far more.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 5:00 am
by rookie_one
JosephW wrote: Mon Apr 22, 2019 5:46 pm -I should avoid getting a hotel next year unless I can find one really cheap. Decided to book one night (Fri -> Sat) this year in order to stay later at the convention Friday night and get there earlier in the morning on Saturday.....neither of which ended up happening. Felt like a waste of $250. Next year I'll search for a cheaper hotel outside the city, maybe 10-15 minutes away.
I found during last minute searches the day before con, there were still rooms in the Hilton for less than $150 a night for the weekend.

Personally, I've stuck with the Westin these last couple years out of convenience to getting to the Hynes and still being far enough away to not be as crazy as the Sheraton or Marriott, but usually you can find something less in the Common/Theater area or Seaport with easy access to the T.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:23 am
by Kusuguru Usagi
JosephW wrote: Mon Apr 22, 2019 5:46 pm -I should avoid getting a hotel next year unless I can find one really cheap. Decided to book one night (Fri -> Sat) this year in order to stay later at the convention Friday night and get there earlier in the morning on Saturday.....neither of which ended up happening. Felt like a waste of $250. Next year I'll search for a cheaper hotel outside the city, maybe 10-15 minutes away.
I the past 2 years have stayed at hotels that aren't part of the hotel convention block. The hotels I stayed at are on Monsignor O'Brien Highway, not far from the Science Museum, and they are within walking distance to the Lechmere Green Line, which I used each day to get to the convention. The rates I got were VERY reasonable, plus, complimentary buffet breakfasts (hot and cold items) were included. In fact, the hotel I stayed at in 2018 (Hampton Inn), and the one I stayed at this year (Fairfield Inn & Suites), were only a block apart from each other. Also, to give you an idea of how close the Fairfield Inn is to the Green Line, it's 2/10 of a mile walk, and the Hampton Inn is a bit shorter.

So, there's a potential option for you for next year. :) :)

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 12:49 pm
by Master of NERV
Kusuguru Usagi wrote: Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:23 am
JosephW wrote: Mon Apr 22, 2019 5:46 pm -I should avoid getting a hotel next year unless I can find one really cheap. ... Next year I'll search for a cheaper hotel outside the city, maybe 10-15 minutes away.
I the past 2 years have stayed at hotels that aren't part of the hotel convention block. The hotels I stayed at are on Monsignor O'Brien Highway, not far from the Science Museum, and they are within walking distance to the Lechmere Green Line, which I used each day to get to the convention. The rates I got were VERY reasonable, plus, complimentary buffet breakfasts (hot and cold items) were included. In fact, the hotel I stayed at in 2018 (Hampton Inn), and the one I stayed at this year (Fairfield Inn & Suites), were only a block apart from each other. Also, to give you an idea of how close the Fairfield Inn is to the Green Line, it's 2/10 of a mile walk, and the Hampton Inn is a bit shorter.
I've thought about trying this, but my overriding concern is having to leave con in time to catch the last train. I really have to look at this carefully. If anyone has any insight/advice please PM me.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Tue Apr 30, 2019 2:54 pm
by JosephW
rookie_one wrote: Sun Apr 28, 2019 5:00 amI found during last minute searches the day before con, there were still rooms in the Hilton for less than $150 a night for the weekend.

Personally, I've stuck with the Westin these last couple years out of convenience to getting to the Hynes and still being far enough away to not be as crazy as the Sheraton or Marriott, but usually you can find something less in the Common/Theater area or Seaport with easy access to the T.
I stayed at the Midtown Hotel right down the street, and it ended up being $193 after taxes. (for some reason it showed up as $250 on my banking site but then changed back to the proper $193)

Ideally I'd want something $100 or less, maybe 10-15 minutes drive from Boston. Just something to save me from having to drive back and forth ~75 minutes Friday night and Saturday morning. Don't want to mess around with having to take trains/subways around Boston, just wanna do what I did this year: drive into the parking garage across the bridge from the Prudential and then walk through the mall and into the Prudential and into the con.

But really I might just skip hotels altogether, because there's really nothing that I'm interested in past 9pm, and being able to sleep at home in my own bed will be that much easier than trying to sleep in a foreign hotel room with people making noise outside it all night. It's all just a question of spending $180 on a hotel room VS two additional 75 minute drives back and forth to Boston.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Mon Nov 18, 2019 1:58 pm
by Danielvincent24
Hello friendly staffers!

firstly, thank you all who made this past AB a wonderful experience! both new and veteran staffers!

Make sure if you are security staff to bring a water bottle of some kind with you as well as a small bag to lug around with you! convenient, smart, and you wont lose everything Like i almost did! I forgot to do this last year and i regretted it because my wallet kept falling out of my pants, and I almost lost my badge a couple of times along with my hotel key. ^^;

Lastly, its best to stay in pairs of two or more when traveling around AB as staff. It's easy to get lost, and not find your way back! from my first year I got hecking anxious a lot, so by all means, HAVE A BUDDY WITH YOU!

Thank you!
ありがとうございます! 

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:48 am
by 1david123
AB2019 was my year 3 for Team Security.

Flight getting out of DCA got delay on delta into detroit but after that was smooth flying into boston.
Train was full ride to convention center. Got in and found out that i was in the hilton and not sheraton... So fun fun. fyi i work nights at home depot so was tired. and i kept passing out doing the meeting sadly.
Cosplay deadpool with some cool stuff to go with deadpool. Megaman helmet/megaman blaster/lightsaber legend of zelda shield. aka dark link.

Fun fact store for food/drinks/beer was like on other side and felt like a couple mile walk.
we all know that store ....

Convention went easy and not like last year fire alarm con like 2018.

Food for party sunday night wasn't that bad but had to get little sleep since i selected an early flight out boston. Also fun fact that bus from convention center goes all way to airport was sweet and i got free ride being a service member of us army reserves was a bonus.

flight out boston was only delay little but didnt have change planes and was same plane back dca with side stop in JFK.
3 years of flying delta to AB i havnt had many issue but flying out late with delta i have had flights get delay heading to ether atlanta or new york.
Delta seem to have direct flights now to dca it seems for 2020 AB. Cant wait to go again.

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:45 pm
by Shiggitay
I'm lucky enough to live within 20 minutes away on the Green Line, so I never NEED to book or join in on a hotel room, but sometimes I do. And if I do it's the Hilton Back Bay with friends (the one right across from the Sheraton). I save a LOT of money if I decide to just commute on the Green Line back and forth for whatever reason ( to change out of cosplay, to drop off swag I accumulate in the DR/AA etc.).

When it comes to packing for AB since I'm a local I usually get my cosplay on and then pack a shoulder bag or tote bag with deodorant, a handheld gaming console like my PS Vita or starting this year my Nintendo Switch, maybe a water bottle and a snack, and other small things like that.

When it comes to stuff on the schedule, back from like 2009-2011 I was super schedule heavy... I'd do like 4 panels a day at times. Nowadays, I focus on the Masquerade, the AMV Contest, and if I can fit it in a concert. This year I aint missin' m-Flo for anything! Otherwise I spend my day going through the Dealer's Room and playing some games in the Game Room.

Finally, I've learned over the years that I don't need figures I see in the DR... but sometimes I really want them lol. I have to tell myself I really shouldn't buy a new fig because I have no space for it, but sometimes the devil on my shoulder overpowers the angel on the other shoulder and I end up getting something I'll regret later.... lol

Re: Lessons Learned at AB 2019

Posted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 8:50 pm
by rhurlock
This isn't travel related, but always double check you packed a phone charger. Even if you're not bringing a bag slip one in your pocket. Con's have a funny way of sucking the life out of all electronic devices and it always feels good to help someone out if they're caught short.