Monday, 30 September 2013

Getting to GenCon Part 1

So as I said in my post on GenCon 2014, my intention is to experience the "best 4 days in gaming" next year.

So what do you need to consider when planning such a trip?

How long do you go for?

Well to experience it properly surely you need to go for 4 days, right?  So that means Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Registration / Collection of your welcome pack etc is on the Wednesday (or early Thursday) so you really need to be there on the Wednesday.
You don’t want to be arriving on the Wednesday and rushing about checking in to your accommodation etc etc so arrival really has to be on the Tuesday.  Plus this is my first time at GenCon Indy so I want to be there for all it and experiencing it to the full.
So that means not only arriving on the Tuesday but leaving on the Monday.

How do you get there?

Well I live in Scotland so there are not a lot of options around mode of transport.  It’s basically flights from Edinburgh or Glasgow to Indianapolis.
For me it’s Edinburgh and right now flights aren’t really that well listed for August 2014.  Prices are also a bit all over the place this far in advance but right now the best price I can see for a 1-stop journey is roughly £900.
Not sure if that’s going to be the actual cost as flights are only just becoming available.  Plus at other times of the year they are nearer the £600 mark and that includes direct flights.
But for sake of a budget we’ll go with the £900 price.

Where do you stay?

The conference centre is in the Downtown area of Indianapolis and somewhat unsurprisingly there are a lot of hotels in that area too.   I’ve looked at a number of these but everything seems to be pointing me at another option.  Renting an apartment/condo.
Having checked a number of websites out I can see there are a number of options.  Some options are better with a larger group with others only working if the group I go with is small.
There is however something that’s makes me hesitate about going for an apartment.  I fully expect to be at convention from morning to night and so unless it makes more financial sense I suspect that an apartment might be overkill.
I mean I could eat at the apartment but likely won’t so having a kitchen is probably unnecessary except perhaps for the Tuesday on arrival and the Monday on departure…

So that's most of the logistics of physically getting to GenCon and where to stay but what about booking for the con itself?  That'll be in the next post.