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Con in a Box - Resources for boardgaming convention directors

This blog is dedicated to helping boardgaming convention directors run successful cons.
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Transport and Lodging - Helping gamers attend

Eric Engelmann
United States
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Congress of Gamers conventions
Eric's actual photo!
Transport for local gamers
Not everyone has a car. Let potential attendees know how to walk, bike, taxi, bus, and metro to your convention. See if any attendees are willing to do Metro station or bus station pickups. Note that Uber offers a link to a FREE ride. Put the link on your con web site and you get free ride credits, as well. Visit

Transport and lodging for non-Local attendees
Even local cons benefit in several ways by attracting at least a few distant gamers.
1. If you want to increase attendance, you should note that there are many, many more gamers who are distant from your con than local to it.

2. By virtue of the extra sacrifice needed to attend, distant gamers are likely to be more active gamers, and so they will likely be familiar with and expert at larger numbers of games than the median local attendee.

3. Distant gamers will likely play some different games, expansions, rules, strategies, etc. from the local crowd, which can tend toward incestuous play. Fresh is mostly good.

If having distant gamers attend sounds good, note that when your local con makes it easy and economical for distant gamers to attend, they are much more likely to do so (duh!). There are probably gamers two hours' drive away who would happily attend if they could just get a free ride and sleep on a cot for $40 a night. Since it (probably) will cost you nothing to help gamers share transport and lodging, it makes sense to do so.

In case you haven't thought of it, a shared Google map with markers showing gamers wanting/offering rides is free and easy. Here's an example with dummy data centered around my next convention. Unfortunately, I've not gotten gamers to use this or any similar tool, so far. It may be that gamers just don't like the idea of sharing a ride with someone they don't know.

For helping gamers find rooms to share and gamers to share rooms, a BGG Geeklist is easy. Using Craig's List is riskier, since criminals looking for empty homes are more likely to troll Craig's List than BGG Geeklists.

Providing pre-constructed links to and for your area might be helpful to those who seldom travel, or who are blessed/cursed with corporate travel planners who normally do all their reservations for them. Here are sample links for Congress of Gamers.

Here are some competitors to See if there are good matches for your con. If so, you might share a link to them., CoG link:, CoG link:, CoG link:, CoG link:,%20MD,%2... (, CoG link:, CoG link:, CoG link:

##Hospitality service
##Pasporta Servo
##Servas Open Doors
##Vacation Rentals By Owner
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