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This forum is for sharing photos, videos, reports, and finding people from Anime Boston 2009.
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Eilonnwy
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Post by Eilonnwy » Mon May 25, 2009 11:56 pm

According to my information the line was no more than an hour for pre-registered attendees and 2 hours for at-con attendees at their peak. I would like to know how long it took you to get through the line and what you thought of the new system.

We tried out the express pass this year and for those who used it, please let me know what you think.



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Post by Hinamori_Momo » Tue May 26, 2009 12:00 am

I really liked how fast the system was this year. You only spend a few minutes in line for pre-registration and then an hour or two for registration. You actually got to enjoy your day at the con instead of wasting it in line! It was a great relief from last year!
The only downside was that the badges weren't plastic like last year. A badge is a badge though and I would have preferred that to spending 6 hours in line like last year.

Thanks registration staff!

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Post by Nosut » Tue May 26, 2009 12:03 am

The only way it could have been faster for me would be if they had my badge in their hand poised to hand it to me. I really did walk in the doors right up to a booth then out the door. I hope that happens again next year

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Post by Lokobiznich » Tue May 26, 2009 12:03 am

I went on Thursday and in the pre reg line it only took 45 minutes.. I was very please. My sister got her badge on Friday and it only took her maybe 25 minutes in the Pre Reg line. Overall, no complaints and very happy.

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Post by Eilonnwy » Tue May 26, 2009 12:08 am

[quote=Hinamori_Momo]
The only downside was that the badges weren't plastic like last year. A badge is a badge though and I would have preferred that to spending 6 hours in line like last year.
[/quote]

Indeed, the badge stock needed to be changed in order to make the process faster for many reasons. However I have already begun talking with Expo Logic about ways we can change the badge design to make it nicer and include badge art of the mascots like it has in years past.

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Post by hooyeah » Tue May 26, 2009 12:15 am

'i had the ezz pass thing and it took me 2 min to get in and out.

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Post by Mystic Blossom » Tue May 26, 2009 12:26 am

Went on Thursday evening and spent somewhere between 10-20 minutes in line (wasn't really keeping score). The only issue I had, which I've mentioned before, was our real names being printed so large.

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Post by Cave » Tue May 26, 2009 12:30 am

I got almost all very nice comments (only some people disappointed by the badges).

Some people would get confused by how fast the express pass process was. They'd say, "Huh? That's it?"

A couple times we joked, "No, that's just your badge for the real line." It was funny. xD

I think when people pre-register that there should be some kind of "You need an ID when picking up your badge" message. I don't know if there's already something planned for that... There were kind of a lot of people like "I forgot my ID/wallet in the car" or "I didn't know I needed it." ._.;;
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Post by Eilonnwy » Tue May 26, 2009 12:31 am

[quote=Mystic Blossom]Went on Thursday evening and spent somewhere between 10-20 minutes in line (wasn't really keeping score). The only issue I had, which I've mentioned before, was our real names being printed so large.[/quote]

It will be much smaller next year. My plan is to have the badge number and real name the same size.

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Post by Eilonnwy » Tue May 26, 2009 12:34 am

[quote=Cave]

I think when people pre-register that there should be some kind of "You need an ID when picking up your badge" message. I don't know if there's already something planned for that... There were kind of a lot of people like "I forgot my ID/wallet in the car" or "I didn't know I needed it." ._.;;[/quote]

There were signs as people entered the reg area and on the TV screens by the line. No matter how many signs we put up there's always a problem with people not bring them but I plan to increase the signage as much as possible for next year.

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Post by InvaderFlak » Tue May 26, 2009 12:56 am

I walked up to the registration room at around 11:15 AM Friday, and asked the attending staff member about the situation.

I was prepared for a conversation like this: **LINK REMOVED BY MODERATORS**

Instead, I got something like, "If you pre-reg'd, go around the crowd, they're at-con reg." All right.

Begin timer (in seconds, approx. )
5 - Walk into room, around crowd. Worry slightly.
30 - Clear crowd, notice a small gaggle of people near the other end of the room. I figure the pre-reg line is small. Odd.
60 - I read the instructions, and pull out my license and bar code. A staff member tells me to wait for an open terminal. As she finishes, she waves me over to one.
80 - I scan in, and turn to my squad. They follow my lead at other terminals.
100 - I hear my con name and real name, and show the print guy my ID. He forks over my badge and another guy gives me a holder for said badge.
120 - I get my stuff squared away as I am handed the standard issue bag of info. I am officially attending AB '09.

There you have it. Two minutes. Last year I waited over 5 hours.

You know the best part of it? I was on paid vacation at the time!
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Post by Kitsoru » Tue May 26, 2009 1:36 am

Picked up my badge around 6ish, I wanna say, on Thursday night, was in and out- couldn't have been more than a minute or two- with no line! Really, really grateful with the process this year.

My only problem, that I know a LOT of people have taken issue with (and I see has been mentioned already XD), is people's real names being printed so LARGELY on the badges. It's a serious privacy issue, especially when it comes to photography, that I know many people, myself included, would like to see changed. Isn't that what 'badge names' are for, after all?

(I personally miss and prefer the lanyard badges, but I know printing those would take much longer, so I can deal :P )

Printing the names the same size as the badge number is a great idea :)

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Post by Yukito Kunisaki » Tue May 26, 2009 2:29 am

Good and fast, but when I was told that my badge was messed up and had to go to Customer service...well..... THAT was slow as hell.

Edit: I speak for Thursday. I don't know if anything changed the other days.

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Post by Salith » Tue May 26, 2009 6:27 am

Upside: Quick, fast and the express pass worked out quickly. I had mine and it went fast and efficently. Definitely should have it for next year again :D I didn't wait in line for more than 20 min on thursday

Downside: Real names so big on the badge.
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Post by Kusuguru Usagi » Tue May 26, 2009 6:51 am

[quote=Eilonnwy]According to my information the line was no more than an hour for pre-registered attendees and 2 hours for at-con attendees at their peak. I would like to know how long it took you to get through the line and what you thought of the new system.

We tried out the express pass this year and for those who used it, please let me know what you think.


[/quote]


My boyfriend and I thought this year's registration process was excellent. The wait was not long at all, and everything ran very smoothly. We waited for about 20 minutes, half hour max. We got there when registration first opened on Thursday (we got there right in time, we just got back from the Science Museum at 4:00). With the Express Pass, it was great how fast it went after going up to one of the booths.

Thank you so much for this new system, registration staff, we hope you will use it again for next year. :thumbup:

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Post by BasharOfTheAges » Tue May 26, 2009 7:06 am

The customer service table and the "non-line" option it was supposed to offer artists, panelists, etc was a slow, arduous process on Thursday, taking a whole lot longer than the main line did (it stood completely still for about 40 min at one point). It was not the benefit it was made out to be.

Once it started backing up, others noticed, got into the main line, and went through in 15min or so.
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Post by Eilonnwy » Tue May 26, 2009 8:21 am

There some bugs in the system that needed to be worked out on Thursday. Things ran much more smoothly on Friday and Saturday.

The point of the CS station was to have a place for people with issues to go and for artists, panelists, and press to avoid the longer line and get started with whatever they needed to do. However, to my pleasant surprise the line was so short that it wasn't needed as better means to get the badge, and you could still pick it up normally.


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Post by DriftRoot » Tue May 26, 2009 12:59 pm

One odd little glitch that caused some head scratching was confusion over IDs a friend of mine experienced.

My friend had pre-registered and was also running an RPG game, so had been told to go to the customer service booth/line to get his badge. He did this, but when he arrived there were THREE people registered under the exact same name/nickname as him. The person at the booth randomly selected a badge (and badge number) to give him because they couldn't figure out which was the "right" badge. It just seemed rather odd on a number of levels. I know my friend was never informed whether he even had to worry about pre-registering for a badge (since he was running a game), so it's possible there were two badges in the system set up for him. I have no idea what the third one was, other than someone with his name and his nick also attending the con...which seems quite incredible (his name isn't all THAT common).

The directions he got as to "go to Customer Service" to pick up his badge were also rather vague, since he had no idea where Customer Service was located. Maybe next year C.S. could be called something that more clearly identifies it as a registration area? Or at least people told to go to Customer Service can also be told where that is? :)
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Post by ninja_girl21 » Tue May 26, 2009 1:01 pm

i love the preg line this year it took a litte while they wernt ready but whne they were it went quick even though they said the scanner thingys were down. but as they said in opening ceremoins free pocky or no lines i choose no lines lol
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Post by Eilonnwy » Tue May 26, 2009 1:10 pm

[quote=DriftRoot]
The directions he got as to "go to Customer Service" to pick up his badge were also rather vague, since he had no idea where Customer Service was located. Maybe next year C.S. could be called something that more clearly identifies it as a registration area? Or at least people told to go to Customer Service can also be told where that is? :)[/quote]

The CS booth was clearly labeled, however certain things about badge pickup for specialty badges will be changed, especially since we know now what Expo Logic can do for us and that the lines were extremely short for pickup.

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Post by LordOnisyr » Tue May 26, 2009 3:23 pm

Last year I waited in the pre-reg line for about two and a half hours late Friday afternoon. This year I entered the line late Thursday afternoon, was in the main reg line for 45 minutes but had a minor badge issue and was another 45 minutes in the customer service line. Even with the customer service line, that was still a total of 90 minutes in line, an hour less than the year before. I also have to applaud the line set-up this year since last year it went all the way around several hallways whereas it seemed a lot more organized this year. Kudos to the registration people this year; they were presented a problem last year and solved it excellently this year.

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Post by Effyness » Tue May 26, 2009 4:39 pm

Well, this year, I pre-registered unlike last year, when I waited in line for six hours. Still, I heard from a friend of mine on Sunday that she only waited 15 minutes.

My registration literally took a minute. I walked in, the lady directed me to an ExpressPass terminal, I took out my bar code and scanned it, waited maybe 5 seconds while they printed out my badge, showed them my ID, and got my badge. Probably the longest part of this whole process was sticking my badge into the little pocket thingy. XDDD

I did like the plastic lanyard badges better, but I'd MUCH rather have a paper badge than have to wait six hours in line again. Other than that, everything was fine. The names were printed rather large, but that's been mentioned, and it didn't bug me TOO much.

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Post by satchansays » Tue May 26, 2009 5:08 pm

I was pre-reg both last year and this year, and based on last year's experience my friends and I picked up our passes on Thursday night, just to be safe. we were there for probably 10-15 minutes before we were done.

other friends of mine that picked up passes on Friday or Saturday were in line for no more than an hour either day.

all in all, this year's registration process was awesome.

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Post by Kiarrens » Tue May 26, 2009 5:14 pm

[quote=BasharOfTheAges]The customer service table and the "non-line" option it was supposed to offer artists, panelists, etc was a slow, arduous process on Thursday, taking a whole lot longer than the main line did (it stood completely still for about 40 min at one point). It was not the benefit it was made out to be.

Once it started backing up, others noticed, got into the main line, and went through in 15min or so.[/quote]
I also found it slightly amusing that we (as panelists) were told to go to the customer service line instead of the normal pre-reg line because our badges were "special." I waited for, oh, I don't know, maybe 20 minutes in line (obviously not complaining there) but when I got my badge it seemed to be exactly the same as everyone else's... so my question was, why bother having us go over there when our badges weren't different? Not a complaint so much as a question.

Also, I'd like to be the ONE person to say that I actually prefer this type of badge, because it allows me to stick my key for the hotel right in the badge holder. I love being able to do that. :thumbup:
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Post by Yammark » Tue May 26, 2009 5:18 pm

Call me crazy, but it was a different experience when I had waited in line so long last time, but I am definately glad I didnt have to wait in line.
I talked to a group of 4 people around 9:00 P.M. and I had pre-registered around then, and had a little video game chat with the group.
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Post by LadyHawke » Tue May 26, 2009 5:58 pm

[quote=Kiarrens] so my question was, why bother having us go over there when our badges weren't different? Not a complaint so much as a question.[/quote]

Because we had not expected the lines to move as fast as they did!

The customer service station was initially designed to allow people to skip the main lines and get done what they need to get done. When the actual LINES moved a such a fast pace, it almost seemed as though the CS station was not really necessary for certain situations (ie: Panelists, artists, etc.) We could send them right up to a regular reg station and get the job done.

Next year, we will be narrowing down exactly WHAT the CS station is NEEDED for and what can go through the regular line.

This is a learning curve that comes with using a new company. Now that we know exactly WHAT ExpoLogic can do for us, we can better fine tune our systems. 2009 really was "re-inventing the wheel" for us.

I'm glad you liked the badge holder!
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Post by Synaizen » Tue May 26, 2009 6:06 pm

I arrived around 8 AM on Friday, and got through the Pre-Reg in roughly 40 minutes; it was nearly as bad as I thought it would be, as my friends were fearing about "LineCon 09." I don't understand why none of the registrars bothered to check ID, not that I minded.

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Post by LadyHawke » Tue May 26, 2009 6:31 pm

[quote=Synaizen]I arrived around 8 AM on Friday, and got through the Pre-Reg in roughly 40 minutes; it was nearly as bad as I thought it would be, as my friends were fearing about "LineCon 09." I don't understand why none of the registrars bothered to check ID, not that I minded.[/quote]

ID was only necessary for pre-registration pickup. (ie: to be sure that you were who you say you were.) If you registered at-con, then it was not necessary to check ID. Some of the typists asked for it because it was easier to type your name from an ID than trying to hear it over the crowds.
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Post by Koichi » Tue May 26, 2009 7:23 pm

There was no line for me and my friends, thanks to the express pass we were able to get in and out of the Reg room in a few minutes. I do miss meeting people and checking out costumes in the lines though.
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Post by DriftRoot » Tue May 26, 2009 8:19 pm

[quote=Eilonnwy]

The CS booth was clearly labeled, however certain things about badge pickup for specialty badges will be changed, especially since we know now what Expo Logic can do for us and that the lines were extremely short for pickup. [/quote]

It was clearly labeled, but you had to walk into registration to find it. I guess my point was that "Customer Service" is a pretty broad term that doesn't really scream "registration area." A simple "Go to the customer service booth in registration if you are a panelist etc." would have helped clear things up.

On a more positive note - this year was the fastest time I've ever had in registration. I got a big kick out of the Expo Logic people all waving excitedly at me when I showed up with my Express Pass Friday morning. They seemed just as pleased as I was that it took me approximately 5 seconds to register (including time spent in line...which was about one second). DEFINITELY felt like my pre-registered status paid off big time (in a non-monetary fashion), which hasn't always been the case in previous years. :thumbup:
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Post by SlAyErPaTh » Tue May 26, 2009 9:00 pm

[quote=Kitsoru]Picked up my badge around 6ish, I wanna say, on Thursday night, was in and out- couldn't have been more than a minute or two- with no line! Really, really grateful with the process this year.

My only problem, that I know a LOT of people have taken issue with (and I see has been mentioned already XD), is people's real names being printed so LARGELY on the badges. It's a serious privacy issue, especially when it comes to photography, that I know many people, myself included, would like to see changed. Isn't that what 'badge names' are for, after all?

(I personally miss and prefer the lanyard badges, but I know printing those would take much longer, so I can deal :P )

Printing the names the same size as the badge number is a great idea :)[/quote]
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Post by Synaizen » Tue May 26, 2009 9:02 pm

I was in the Pre-Reg line... :o

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Post by DeathfireD » Tue May 26, 2009 9:03 pm

Nothing really serious but I do have a few gripes about the line system. Not saying it was horrible just saying it could use some work for next year.

Me and a few friends got to AB around 9:30-10ish. The line was only about 5 rows long but in total it took us about an hour and 20 mins to reach the front (by then there was about 10 rows. The whole time my friends and people around us where confused and frustrated that a few of the pre-registrations booths where not being open for the walk ins. There was about 6 pre-reg booths and 5 walk-in booths. 3 or 4 of those pre-reg booths where closed and only one was actually being used. 2 of those booths could have easily been manned and cut the walk-in line wait time by a lot. I hope next year this is considered since the pre-reg wait time for friday was laughable.

My second gripe was that a few women in line would randomly hug staff members in order to cut to the front of the line. The wait wasn't that bad but it felt like a slap in the face every time that happened. If women get to cut because they hug male staff members then I suggest adding more female staff so us men can jump to the front as well :P.

Last gripe....not sure if this was something I missed but most of us in line didn't receive an Anime Boston bag with the booklet of information..etc. The booth people just asked for cash, our ID, and what we wanted to be called. They didn't give us anything other then the AB id. Was the bag of stuff only for pre-reg people or was it also supposed to be for walk-ins as well? Next year it would be nice if they handed us the stuff at the booth or at least told us where we could get it.

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Post by LadyHawke » Tue May 26, 2009 9:15 pm

Bags were being handed out as you exited Hall A. The traffic flow was out of the side door. If you walked out the same way you walked in, you probably missed the bags. But they were definitely there. a few people came back for them because they missed them the first time!

We switched over what we could, but we would need more cash drawers in order to open up more at-con stations (this is why some were not being used. We had no drawers for them.) We can look into purchasing more cash drawers.
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Post by Lawliet » Tue May 26, 2009 9:26 pm

for me and my friends, the line wait was almost 2 hours (1 hr 45 mins around to be more precise), and we were pre reg, and i was confused by the express scan since i had my barcode all ready to go but i didn't see it until after i checked in normally. was there a special express barcode line or something we missed?

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Post by Master of NERV » Tue May 26, 2009 9:36 pm

I'd pre-reged and arrived Thursday night for my badge. There was some confusion about where to get in line, but once that was straightened out, I headed outside. Once the line started moving, it took about 40 minutes to get through Registration. At no time did we actually stall, and movement was pretty much constant. Overall, I was impressed.

Just one thing I’d like to mention: the thin elastics used to hang the badges were problematic. I nearly lost my badge when the metal clip came loose from the plastic sleeve, and I saw several others having the same problem; one lady had her badge actually fall to the floor at the threshold to the Hynes--not a place to have to stop and pick something up. Luckily for me, I always bring my lanyard from AB 2004 (the Geneon one I keep my pins on), and clipped the badge to that. I understand it’s an expense, but you may wish to bring the lanyards back in 2010.
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Post by Eilonnwy » Tue May 26, 2009 9:53 pm

[quote=Lawliet]for me and my friends, the line wait was almost 2 hours (1 hr 45 mins around to be more precise), and we were pre reg, and i was confused by the express scan since i had my barcode all ready to go but i didn't see it until after i checked in normally. was there a special express barcode line or something we missed?[/quote]

If you waited that long then you were in the wrong line. Pre-reg wait was never anywhere near 2 hours.

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Post by LadyHawke » Tue May 26, 2009 10:37 pm

[quote=Master of NERV]I understand it’s an expense, but you may wish to bring the lanyards back in 2010.
[/quote]

We are definitly considering doing something different with lanyards in 2010 since the elastic tended to slip around a lot. (I was telling a few people that tying the ends of the elastic off would help a lot...)


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Post by DeathfireD » Tue May 26, 2009 11:43 pm

[quote=ladyhawke78]Bags were being handed out as you exited Hall A. The traffic flow was out of the side door. If you walked out the same way you walked in, you probably missed the bags. But they were definitely there. a few people came back for them because they missed them the first time!

We switched over what we could, but we would need more cash drawers in order to open up more at-con stations (this is why some were not being used. We had no drawers for them.) We can look into purchasing more cash drawers. [/quote]


I followed the traffic out the right side door. There was no other exit at the time lol...
Next year try having them at multiple exits (if there are multiple exits) or just hand them out at the booths.

It's good to know you guys might buy more cash drawers for next year. That will definitely help reduce the waiting time.

kathy1meme
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Post by kathy1meme » Wed May 27, 2009 12:01 am

My husband and I arrived around 10 on Friday. The lines were pretty long looking, but the security person inside the door had my husband fast tracked to the registration desk (he uses a wheel chair). The only sticky point was I had to argue a bit to be allowed to stay with him. The young man was very polite, and said his instructions were to allow disabled folk to go to the head of the line. I pointed out that it wouldn't do my husband much good to get his badge in 5 minutes if he then had to wait outside registration for however long it took me to go through. He accepted my reasoning and let me go.

I guess my point is that policy should allow one person to go with the disabled person. Just one (or maybe a minor also it it's a family group)- you can't let 10 people attach themselves to everyone with a cane, but splitting up couples is a bit harsh. I realize this is perhaps low on the list of things Anime Boston staff has to solve, and you're far from the worst example I've seen. (The powers that be tried to separate me and my husband at our son's high school graduation! I had to crouch on the floor beside his chair.)

Thanks for a great convention.

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Zigfried
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Post by Zigfried » Wed May 27, 2009 12:02 am

[quote=ladyhawke78]

We are definitly considering doing something different with lanyards in 2010 since the elastic tended to slip around a lot. (I was telling a few people that tying the ends of the elastic off would help a lot...)


[/quote]

The biggest problem with the elastics was attaching anything else to them, namely the Masquerades sheets. Those would periodically slip right off of the ties. I ended up just folding mine in half and sticking it in the plastic.

faygo5000
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Post by faygo5000 » Wed May 27, 2009 12:08 am

i walked in to pre-reg at about 11am friday. there was no line and i got my badge in about 1 min. My badge never printed my name(yay!). instead it had my badge name 3 times.

I did wait in the non-reg line with my friend and we waited about 45 mins. no complaints here.

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Post by Irken Hawk » Wed May 27, 2009 1:15 am

My friend and I got there sometime early Friday evening (like around 4PM) and it took around 15 minutes to register and we didn't pre-reg.

Mutantfish
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Post by Mutantfish » Wed May 27, 2009 1:19 am

We picked up badges Thursday night and were in line for about 45 minutes. I used the Express computers and my real name never ended up on the badge either. Just my badge name three times. I had to get out my ID at the ball ticket pick-up because my name wasn't on my badge. Strange.

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Eilonnwy
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Post by Eilonnwy » Wed May 27, 2009 8:31 am

[quote=kathy1meme]
I guess my point is that policy should allow one person to go with the disabled person. Just one (or maybe a minor also it it's a family group)- you can't let 10 people attach themselves to everyone with a cane, but splitting up couples is a bit harsh. I realize this is perhaps low on the list of things Anime Boston staff has to solve, and you're far from the worst example I've seen. (The powers that be tried to separate me and my husband at our son's high school graduation! I had to crouch on the floor beside his chair.)

Thanks for a great convention.[/quote]

This is our policy. The security person must have been new and didn't quite understand my directions. I apologize for the inconvenience.

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chibisara
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Post by chibisara » Wed May 27, 2009 12:21 pm

I got in around 9 on Thursday and I had no wait whatsoever. I was VERY pleased with the registration this year. Hiring a company was definitely the way to go. I liked how streamlined it looked.

Only problem was with the Hynes security. I was trying to enter the main part of the Hynes from the Pru and they made me walk ALL THE WAY around the OUTSIDE of the Sheraton and Hynes to get to Reg on Thursday instead of walking the mere 50 feet past the door to the Reg room...
'12: Koakuma - the smallest of the devils

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Eilonnwy
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Post by Eilonnwy » Wed May 27, 2009 12:53 pm

I explained to the Hynes that once the doors opened people could enter from the mall to register. I suspect there was a shift change and maybe the information did not get relayed correctly. As soon as I was informed of the problem I talked to the guards and the issue was resolved for the rest of the weekend. I'm sorry for the inconvenience you experienced.

021210
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Post by 021210 » Wed May 27, 2009 12:59 pm

[quote=Eilonnwy]I explained to the Hynes that once the doors opened people could enter from the mall to register. I suspect there was a shift change and maybe the information did not get relayed correctly. As soon as I was informed I talked to the guards and the issued was resolved for the rest of the weekend. I'm sorry for the inconvenience you experienced. [/quote]

Yeah, one of the Hynes security guards stopped me and rudely asked me where my badge was as I was walking in from the mall, and I politely told him I needed to get one and I just walked right on by.

That definitely soured me a bit, but when I got to reg at about 2:00 on Friday, not counting staff, there was only about 3 people there. I literally walked right up to the at-con reg booth and got my badge about 10 minutes after I arrived at the con. It was lovely, and I was so excited about it for the rest of the day.

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Eilonnwy
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Post by Eilonnwy » Wed May 27, 2009 1:17 pm

Please understand that the security needs to make sure everyone has their badge and at certain times in the day badges are required on the first floor, and those times changed each day. We kept the Hynes informed to the best of our ability, and it's to my understanding that there were a few isolated incidents until I cleared things up on Thursday.

Dave Sloan
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Post by Dave Sloan » Wed May 27, 2009 1:24 pm

With regards to the lines, we at registration had an unofficial policy. Oh hell, let's make it official:

Long Wait in 2008
No Line in 2009
See you again in 2010

(I could have resisted, but didn't want to. :P )
Anime Boston Volunteer: 2004
Anime Boston Registration Staff: 2005,6,8,9,10,11,12,13,15,16,18

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