I haven’t seen the numbers floated around much, but this year’s NYCC was clearly the biggest ever as show runner Lance Fensterman told me for PW:
The 2015 edition of the New York Comic Con was the biggest yet, with 169,000 tickets sold–up from 151,000 in 2014. Along with even more people, the event—held October 8-11 at the Javits Center–saw more venues used, and the increased presence of branded sponsorships for products far beyond those associated with the world of comics and cosplay.
I’ve seen the official number elsewhere as 167,000 and Torsten has a full piece on the attendance.
As opposed to last year, which was declared the biggest con in North America, but only had more ticket sales than San Diego’s 135,000, I think this year did have more people than SDCC, just based on my observations and the numbers.
Now, SDCC has about 60,000 people show up without badges, and I doubt that many look-e-loos showed up to NYCC. So in terms of total crowd for the event, I’d still give SDCC the edge. In terms of ticket buyers, NYCC is now larger, however.
And god help us if they decide to sell any more tickets. Seriously the place is FULL. No mas.
Update: In a piece by Rob Salkowitz, SDCC’s David Glanzer explains that if they used the 1 ticket = 1 person count, SDCC attendance wold be over 300,000:
“The reality is we have well over 130,000 attendees to our show (our badges have names on them) so a four day badge holder is counted as one unique attendee,” says David Glanzer, Director of Marketing and PR for San Diego Comic-Con. “This was considered a benefit to exhibitors because it would let them know how many people they could encounter over the course of the event. If we counted unique attendees per day, our number would be way in excess of 300,000 attendees.”