Can you believe it? It's almost time for the TPT seller's conference in Vegas? I will be heading out in just 4 short days! A few of my friends are going for the first time and in conversations with them, I have been telling them what I know from my experience going last year! Then I was thinking that other sellers might want to know the same things. Of course I have way more than 10 tips but to keep it manageable, I stuck to that many!
Keep in mind a lot of this is my opinion and others may disagree! Go with what works for you!
Now I know you have your hotel lined up but do you know about Resort Fees? If you ask me it's kind of BS but hotels in Vegas charge $20-40 per night extra that gets added to your room charges for their "Resort Fee" (supposedly to cover stuff like "free wi-fi", their pools, etc., things I think should be included in the cost of the room and usually are - in all cities but Vegas). For example, last year I think I paid $27 per day for a resort fee. This year the hotel I am at (not the Venetian) charges $32 extra per night. Yuck. I will be there 5 nights and that is $160 extra. Boo. People have petitioned to change this, but for now, be forewarned. Remember, though, some of your expenses are tax deductible when you go to the TPT Seller Conference, so save your receipts and make sure to discuss what you can deduct with your accountant at tax time!
Blogger Meet Ups! There are tons of different meet ups. Here are just a few I have heard of. Try and hit at least one to meet some new people, make connections, and have fun and win prizes and giveaway!
Teacher Blogger Meet Up - Wednesday night (Facebook Page)
Go Noodle Meet Up at the Venetian Pool - Thursday (sold out :( )
Sellebrate Secondary - Thursday night (Facebook Page)
Kick Back with the Primary Pack -Friday Night (Facebook Page)
I know there are a few more too, like the Cool Kids Meet Up but I don't know the info on those.
Bring an extra bag to take all your swag (and hopefully prizes) home! And keep an eye on it! Hot tip from me - I learned the hard way. I left my swag bag in one of the conference rooms last year, went back and it was gone :( . At least it wasn't my purse though, but it was never seen again. And I had thrown some business cards in there too so whoever got it had to know who it belonged to.
Speaking of that, bring some business cards! It might be too late to get them through Vistaprint but you can probably do something at your local Staples in time. Also bring a small bag for all the cards from your new friends!
Another tip from personal experience, if there is a bloggy buddy you really want to meet in real life at the conference, do not assume you will just "see them around". Last year there were about 800 people there and try as I might, I never ran into my friend Sally from Elementary Matters or some of my Adventures in Literacy Land blog coauthors. :( This year, I smartened up and I already have their cell numbers and will track them down if need be - and a couple gals and I already made plans to grab a bite to eat so we definitely will get to sit and catch up then.
(Of course these candy phones won't work for this purpose but aren't they fun and creative?)
Wear comfortable shoes, especially the first day or two! TRUST ME! Even if you are staying in the Venetian and think, gee I am just walking down to the conference, The Venetian is HUGE! Check out this map! And note, where the conference sessions are is not even part of the map! It just says "To The Sands Expo".
And here is the Sands Expo Center where things will be happening. Just that one purple part of it is 40,000 square feet! I have bad feet so I always need to wear comfy shoes but on my one visit to Vegas, I wore my Clarks sandals the first day to walk around the strip and I got such bad blisters and boy my feet hurt. The next day, sneakers all the way. Also throw a couple band-aids in your purse just in case.
So these shoes may be cute, but they are not coming with me! :( By all means if your feet can take it, wear your fancy shoes. Or a solution might be wear comfortable shoes down there, with your fancier shoes in your tote and swap them out when you get to the Sands!
Leave a little early - even if you think you're on time, and especially if you know you always are late to things, leave 10 or even 15 minutes early. Everything is further away in Vegas, even as I said, if you are just walking around the hotel. It takes longer to get places because the hotels are so huge , but the bonus? You get a lot of exercise! Burning lot of calories and building those leg muscles!
Speaking of time, you may need to be patient at the McCarran Airport in Vegas. Last year my wait for luggage at the carousel was LONG. And a friend on another flight said the same, as did my cousin (whose in-laws live near Vegas so she has been there a bunch). Maybe we just all had bad luck but try not to get stressed and find something to talk about while you wait or read a book or go on your phone and do some pinning or go on IG. I waited 50 minutes last year. Upside? AMAZING people watching and the carousel itself was entertaining While I was watching every other bag go around, I noticed some random items also going around and around. A hairbrush and a woman's pair of cotton panties were on different parts of the carousel. Haha!
Most important tip! Relax and make time for fun, friends, good food, sightseeing, and people watching! I don't gamble much but I always have a blast in Vegas! Cheers and see you there!
What's your favorite Vegas trip for newbies? Comment below and let us know!