Fan Expo 2013: The Survival Guide

Fan Expo 2013 is here and with all the wicked events, cool celebrities and awesome panels lined up for the massive expo, its pretty good to be prepared for anything and everything. We present the Fan Expo 2013 Survival Guide, our full overview of everything you need to keep in mind and do before adventuring into convention.

Please do read everything as every point is very important.

  1. Bring LOTS of Water: With two buildings housing events this year, the amount of walking you will have to do requires you to be hydrated well. Yes, there are resources on site such as eateries and stuff, but don’t depend on them. 50,000+ people attend the festival every year and last thing you want to do is be stuck in the back of a 50 person line when you are really dehydrated.
  2. Bring Snacks: As I mentioned above, there is a number of catering options at Fan Expo. However, if you are running between events and you need to grab a bite, lining up is not the best option. Bring stuff with you like granola bars, fruit and juices that will keep you going until you have lunch/dinner. Also, you should consider bringing a packed lunch as well, as that is always a good idea.
  3. Print The Schedule and Mark It: Sounds like a baby task but with over 36+ hours of Fan Expo’ing possible and now two different buildings to deal with at the Toronto Convention Centre, you have know where everything is and what time it is. Even a slight miss and you could miss a panel, an autograph session or just miss out on amazing contests and activities that run during the expo. Print the schedule here: fanexpocanada.com/schedule
  4. Plan to Come Early: If a panel event is at 1, don’t show up at 12:50 and think its all going to be good. People line up as early as an hour before a panel, depending who the celebrity at that panel is. Coming early will guarantee you’ll be ahead of the line (after VIP pass holders) and you will get a chance to get a good seat somewhere near the front. It is all first come, first serve basis.
  5. Don’t Pack Your Schedule: If you are planning to attend pretty much the whole day, like our team at The Arts Scene, make sure there are gaps in your schedule to take a break. It’s important you relax at given intervals to avoid having sore feet, among other problems.
  6. Bring Cash: Avoid the idea of using a debit machine or your credit card. All celebrity signings take cash and there are very few debit machines on site. Bring enough cash to ensure you are able to do what you want, including buy merchandise, pay for autograph signings and buy food and drink. Plan ahead on how much you will need to spend as well, so you have a budget to work with. The cost of autographs, food, photo ops, merchandise and all can add up.
  7. Plan Your Parking: Nothing sucks more than coming downtown from out of town and not having a parking spot. Plan your parking in advance. MTCCC has parking underground for 1700 vehicles. More details can be found here: mtccc.com/attendees/parking.aspx – For other parking options, visit the parking map to find the nearest parking facility: en.parkopedia.ca/parking/toronto
  8. Get On The Subway Early: With Union Station undergoing a major overhaul and St. Andrew another busy TTC station catering to both the Entertainment District and Financial District, get on the subway early if you are planning to use the TTC. Unexpected delays happen and if you are playing it close to the schedule, you may miss out on an event.
  9. Charge Your Phone and Bring Extra Camera Batteries: Don’t for one second think that if you run out of battery for your phone, you can simply find a socket and charge it. The convention centre has many outlets available, but with 50K+ people attending, the chance of you finding one maybe difficult. Plus, the last thing you want is your camera dying on you when you are going to get a picture with a celebrity.
  10. Bringing Kids to the Expo: For every Adult Pass, you are allowed to bring up to 2 kids between the ages of 6 and 12 for free (5 and under is free without the coupon). You MUST print the following coupon (link at the end) and bring it when you buy/redeem your adult ticket. For those having paid tickets mailed to you, please print this coupon and go to the Public Relations office when you arrive at the expo. To download Coupon click HERE