Life as we know it is going back to normal next year as the dates for SDCC ’16 have been revealed and it’s back to the normal third week dates of July 21-14. Thank god. None of this post Fourth of July hell.
In even better news that will shock everyone, it looks like Con will be staying in San Diego, at least through 2018. It seems SD mayor Kevin Faulconer has been meeting with CCI peeps and hotel owners to personally make sure they can stay. The biggest issue was getting hotels to agree to setting aside large room blocks at discounted rates.
Comic-Con International and the San Diego Tourism Authority, which oversees convention center bookings, declined to comment this week on when a new two-year contract would be inked. Hoteliers, however, confirmed that they have been responding to a recent request from Comic-Con organizers that they write up addendums to their 2016 room block contracts committing to not raise their rates for 2017 and 2018 and to maintain the same number of discounted hotel rooms for the convention.
“We support the mayor’s efforts to keep Comic-Con in San Diego and have worked cooperatively with our hotel members to come to a reasonable agreement between the city and Comic-Con,” said Namara Mercer, executive director of the San Diego County Hotel-Motel Association. “By and large, the majority of the hotels are on board, and the only delays were with a few hotels that were evaluating the proposal.
According to Hilton sales and marketing dude Donovan Henson, “We feel like we’re in a very good place with Comic-Con on the hotel side for ‘17 and ‘18. And we know that in their hearts they want to stay so we have to work together to extend out as long as we can.”
Ya hear that Las Vegas? In their hearts, they want to stay!
I should note here that these “discounted rates” are sort of discounts. For instance, at the Hilton Bayfront, the con rate is is $299 a night. I did a random check of Hilton rates and found this on their own website for dates later in the summer:
However, to be fair, when I checked other rates at other hotels, they were all around $300 a night for summer weekends, which is a high demand time for what is, after all, a popular travel destination even without Trigun cosplayers and Travis Fimmel. When you add in supply and demand, $300 a night isn’t cheap but it is well within the market price. Keeping these rates for the next few years is definitely a good deal for the CCI folks and hotels, and by 2019 I’ll be too old to go so I won’t care.
As for other convention data, the Unofficial SDCC blog has news that last year’s wristband system will most likely be in place this year. This new policy was instituted to cut down on “line jumpers” who send a pal to camp out and fight off zombies during the long, hard night, and waltzed in as a gang of 12 or so to get in line for The Walking Dead panel as dawn breaks. Once again, I an by nature unable to understand this line waiting impulse, but the comments on the USDCCB post are full of complaints that the system made lines longer…why, yes. That was their intent. Some people also complain that the new system is dangerous because now children have to sleep outside in line instead of having dad wait for them, and the children are hungry and oh, papa why? My question is, WHY ARE YOU MAKING YOUR CHILDREN CAMP OUT TO SEE SOME DUMB PANEL ANYWAY?
Once again, I’m sure the kids are excited to see the cast of Kiss Meets Scooby Doo, so I’m not accusing anyone of bad parenting. The comments indicate that there was actually quite a bit of confusion over last year’s wristband system, so I’m not sure if these are just comment complainers or a general sentiment. Peanut gallery what say you?
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.