For those of you who didn’t happen to receive the memo, 2016 SDCC Open Registration is happening this Saturday, February 20th. If there’s any interest at all in participating this weekend, one requirement has to have been completed prior to the announcement. All participants will need to have a valid member ID with the Comic-Con International website. If you haven’t made one yet, unfortunately you’re out of luck for this year! Make sure you make one ASAP if you plan to try for 2017. The ID will be yours to use until you decide to deactivate it.
If you do have a current and valid member ID, log into your account to confirm that you are eligible for Open Registration. You’ll see a green check mark with “OK CCI ’16 Attendee Open Reg” next to it. If it’s red, that means you have all days purchased, Preview Night included, and are ineligible.
Get Ready to Rumble!
In the days prior to registration, an email will be sent with the link to access the EPIC registration waiting room. For pre-registration last year, it was sent out on a Thursday, but it may vary upon CCI’s preference. The email will also include information on checking your eligibility via your CCI member account, and also includes a link to check your web browser settings. I suggest not skipping the latter, as it may affect your chances of getting in to purchase badges. I’ve also heard by word of mouth that people have used mobile devices (e.g. iPads, cell phones) to purchase badges. All I can say is do so at your own risk. If you’re new to the SDCC badge game, stick with the basics and use a desktop computer/laptop.
May the SDCC Odds Be Ever In Your Favor
Alas, registration day has arrived! Here is what you should do prior to 9:00am PST (Access to the EPIC waiting room will be closed sharply at that time, so get yourself in before then!):
Have the following information ready:
1. Your personal registration code (either found in the email sent to you by CCI or by accessing the “registration information” tab when logged on to the CCI member page). You only need this to get into the waiting room.
2. Member IDs and last names for yourself and/or those you plan to purchase badges for.
3. Upon entering registration after the waiting room, you’ll have 15 minutes to purchase badges for yourself and 2 other people, or whoever you are helping that still needs them. Badge prices for this year can be found here. Whoever is entering information for the person(s) requesting badges will also be responsible for buying them. Make sure the necessary funds are available! The purchaser will be also be able to reconfirm their mailing address to which all badges ordered will be sent. Word is they will be mailed out at least 4 weeks before Con. This is a new system that CCI is implementing in order to avoid having to pick up badges at the Convention Center, which will be convenient to most attendees. However, on-site pick up will still apply if purchased badges are registered under an international address.
Unsure of what to do once you’re in for registration? Check out this step by step tutorial video.
For any badges purchased on Saturday, an order acknowledgement will be sent via email within 24-48 hours, followed by a confirmation email sent to every individual attendee receiving a badge within 72 hours.
Tips For Registration Success
I’ve heard stories that the registration process, be it pre-registration or open, has been successful in groups. If you are going into it alone, see if you know someone that is also participating. Even better if they aren’t attempting to purchase badges for more than 1 other person. That way, you got each other’s back if one of you happens to get in before the other. If you are participating in registration with friends, this has more often than not been the best option. The San Diego Comic-Con Unofficial Blog, one of my top sources for SDCC event information, has a great article on group buying.
Aside from that, there really is no telling whether or not you will actually get in to register due to EPIC’s random selection system. That spinning blue circle in the waiting room will either make you grateful or want to pull your hair out. Possibly both. But strength in numbers has proved some of us, if not most, otherwise.
I wish you all good luck! If I’ve left out anything, please feel free to add any additional tips/info in the comments that could be of use this weekend.