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While Lindsey at ShareASale covered “10 To-Do’s Before Affiliate Summit West,” and Shawn Collins wrote the book on “How to Get the Most Out of Attending a Conference,” I wanted to cover some of the more non-conventional conference tips.
You’re about to enter a sealed chamber with dozens of others (the airplane), then combine back-to-back-to-back days of hand-shaking, public restrooms and a shortened sleep schedule. Your immune system is going to need all the help it can get to fight off the dreaded “Conference Crud.”
Personally, 1 Emergen-C each day starting a week before the conference, then every day during the conference and finally for a week afterwards is enough for me. But Shannon takes it a step further,
I start taking Emergen-C, Elderberry Syrup, and Oil of Oregano a week before the conference and then continue through, and for about a week after. It has helped me beat conference crud two times now.
Remember to bring one with you to breakfast while at Affiliate Summit. They’re not bad in cranberry juice.
At the Hotel
After you get to the hotel and put your bags in your room (or check them at the front desk, if your room isn’t ready) the first thing you want to do is text your room number to yourself and your roommate or other trusted friend. Depending on how much you trust this person, it may not hurt to let them hold a spare key to your room.
Then, head to Walgreens
Trip to Walgreens
There, you will pick up:
The combination of dry air and over-21 drinks means you’re going to be dehydrated. When you get back to your room late at night (or early in the morning) and there’s a jackhammer working on your head while the room is spinning, drink 1/2 of one of these. Drink the other 1/2 when you wake up 2 hours later, then drink the other full one the next morning. Finally, laugh at everyone else who’s walking into breakfast holding their head and whispering. You’re welcome.
Downy Wrinkle Reducer
I used to retire back to my room early Saturday night to iron all my clothes, but Kim Rowley tells me to use Downy Wrinkle Reducer instead (we’re grown-ups now – putting your clothes on hangers & taking them into the shower doesn’t cut it anymore). I’m buying mine when I get there, although you can pick it up ahead of time & pack it (I’m afraid of it bursting open, and soaking my clothes).
When I come home from a show, the first thing my kids ask is, “What’d you bring me?” You can handle souvenirs three ways:
- Don’t buy them. They’re junk anyway.
- Buy something that’ll keep them entertained via Amazon.com ahead of time, and have it delivered to your kids the first day of the show (or sooner). One year, I bought Mario Cart for the Wii with an extra controller and 3 steering wheels – that kept them entertained. Entertained kids = happy wife; happy wife = happy life.
- Buy them in Vegas. If you go this route, check out Walgreens. They have all sorts of souvenirs, and are much cheaper than the airport. Also, if your kid (like my daughter) collects post cards, bring a stamp with you. It’s near impossible to find one AT the airport.
Do Not Disturb
Now that you’re back to your hotel room, chilling your Gatorade (yellow) and spraying the wrinkles out of your clothes, slap the Do Not Disturb hanger on your door. Why? Because I’m cheap.
See, with the hanger on your door, housekeeping will skip your room, then you don’t have to tip them daily. Wait, you don’t tip them when they clean your room? I thought I was cheap. Tip the housekeeping staff (how much?).
This tip may not work too well in Vegas (where even at night, it’s light out) but most hotels have 2 sets of curtains on the windows – a thin one that lets light in (but doesn’t let people across the way see you walking around buck-naked) and a heavy one that blocks all light. When you go to sleep at night, keep the heavy one open, but the thin one closed. This way, when the sun comes up in the morning, it unleashes some chemical reaction in your head and makes it easier to wake up.
Again, as an East-coaster heading to Vegas, I’m lucky if I wake up after 3am. Stupid timezones.
So those are some of my tips, which I’ve picked up after numerous trips to Affiliate Summit and other conferences. What have you found, to make your trip easier, safer, cheaper, and more enjoyable?