Tip of the Day #7: Homeless at Comic-Con, What Now?!


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Wow, Hotelpocalypse 2015 was a rough- leaving many battered and bruised once the  Thursday notification e-mails went out. Intense pressure for the annual Hotel Sale has grown the past few years and I think we may have broke something this time. I won’t re-live all the issues with Travel Planners, but needless to say, their work is cut out for them the next few days and for next year. So for those that are left without homes during Comic-Con, let’s move on to some options:

1. Pray/Sacrifice/Chant 
May sound silly but sometimes you need all the help you can get. Besides, sometimes it’s good to pause and reflect on the fact that being homeless at Comic-Con is nothing like actually being homeless. So take a breath, don’t freak out, and start working your options.

Jonathan Corpina2. Twitter
Seriously, our fandom on Twitter is amazing. Even in the midst of all the calamity, fellow attendees rallied together and helped each other get rooms for the past 24 hours. Like the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, rooms were passed and traded in 140 characters or less. If you scour the hashtag #SDCC, you will most likely come across someone willing to give up an extra reservation. Then you have to contact each other through e-mail to pass the reservation. Two warnings; the current reservations are only good till Sunday so you have to lock something down ASAP. Second, you shouldn’t have to pay anyone for a room reservation. It’s comic-courtesy to pass it on. I’ve been saved in the past and I was again this year. I made it into the Bayfront because of the generosity of others. You also may ask those with high influence to give you an RT boost.

Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 10.08.52 PM3. Friends of CCI Forum
The title of this forum says it all. For years now the Friends Forum has been coordinating the tribe and helping them resolve any number of issues related to Comic-Con. On the link proved above, many are listing extra rooms, wanting to be a roommate, or wanting to add a roommate. It’s really awesome and the organizers are even awesomer. Check it out.

4. Adjustments
After the 72 hour deadline and once the dust settles, some might be able to expand their 1-2 person rooms into full 3-4 person rooms. In the past, Travel Planners has been very good with making adjustments to the reservations where possible. However, this has been a weird year and with all the issues, they might be less flexible. Nevertheless, if you know someone that is willing to try, you might be able to get into their upgraded room. It’s worth a shot.

5. Next Sale is April 8th
Comic-Con says there will be another sale next month, however it is very unlikely that Gaslamp hotels will open up. It’s worth a try but make sure you are ready to register on April 8. Check the CCI site for more details.

inline-airbnb-eviction-trailer6. Search
With some patience and Google, you can still find rooms on your own. Whether it’s an AirBnB or a random Motel 6, if you are willing to go farther out, you can find some options if you are patient. Now that people have gotten their hotel of choice, many are now canceling their ‘back up’ hotel in other locations. Just make sure to find one near the tram or SDMTS route and you’ll be ok. I had a hotel off the grid in Chula Vista years ago and it was fine.

9344810627_1c91d03314_c7. Camp
Desperate times lead to desperate measures. If you don’t have a room, you might as well have a good seat in Hall H by camping out over night under the tents. You will end your week pretty frazzled but hey, your making memories. So if your young at heart and have a good back you might want to consider this option. With the right gear and the right group of friends, this can be the best thing you ever done!

I know this was a stressful experience for some of you but it will be worth it in the end. CCI has done their best to handle the situation and I’m sure it will be better for next year. Rarely to the exact same problems repeat themselves- but we sure find ways to create new ones! Happy hunting this weekend and let me know if you have any questions and please leave a comment with your story of hotel generosity.

**Update May 5**
I just learned of a company called Hotel Room Alerts that helps people get rooms at completely sold out hotels. Because of the Comic-Con dilemma, they created a specific event page for SDCC:
http://www.hotelroomalerts.com/events/comic-con-san-diego-2015/order
I’ve not tried them before but if you have a positive experience, let me know!

8 thoughts on “Tip of the Day #7: Homeless at Comic-Con, What Now?!

  1. You left out an option…. bring your own hotel with you!!
    We’ve driven an (borrowed/rented/stolen) RV to Comic-Con a couple of times now and it works amazingly well and is pretty dang cheap too. There is an RV park in Mission Valley right by a rail station so getting to the convention center and back is pretty easy. I really do recommend it as a series option if you’re coming from anywhere west of the Mississippi River.

    • Your certainly right and thinking outside the hotel box! That’s an option that more might explore if this continues to be a problem. Thanks for commenting!

    • The first time my podcasting buddy and I went to SDCC we took his RV. We’ll be doing it again this year, and I can’t wait! Even if a RV park isn’t available, there are grocery stores in Mission Valley within walking distance to shuttle stops that allow overnight RV parking. I agree, it is a very cheap, and very fun alternative to the madness of finding a hotel in the Gaslamp and beyond.
      As a side note: Tony, we love the blog! We mentioned your post about Marvel not being at SDCC on episode 7 of The Usual Podcast. We talk SWTOR, Star Wars, and geek/pop culture. I love this list, and will be talking about it when we record tonight. This will be my 4th year attending the convention, and I look to your site for tips and tricks each year. Keep up the good work sir!

      • What an awesome adventure. I did a RV trip with guys before and it was one of the most memorable experiences. Great job thinking outside the hotel box and turning something negative into a positive.

        Wow, thanks for the shout out on your podcast! That is super generous of you and I’m honored. Hope to meet you guys in July! And thanks for commenting!

  2. Another snafu being handed to us is that Ace Parking is not allowing any overnight parking, anywhere. All cars have to be out of the garage by 2am (or be towed at owner’s expense), reclaiming your spot no sooner than 6am, which makes trucking all your Hall H Line camping gear back to your car in a timely manner extremely difficult. We don’t even get to pick our own lot. Grumble.

    • Yea I get that with this current hotel madness that it is escalating the other con stressors as well. However, as inconvenient as the Ace Parking overnight policy is, it’s no different than any other city across America. If the lots don’t turn over each night, then they will perpetually be filled. I know it sucks but I guess I don’t have expectation that city lots would change- even for CC. Hope you get a system worked out though and thanks for commenting!

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