San Diego Comic Con is once again upon us, and thousands of fans across the world are scrambling to figure out what to pack for the convention. I am attending SDCC this year with a press badge on behalf of Multiverse of Color. I’ve thrown together a list of everything I keep on me when I am out and about at the convention. Please note that I am a journalist, so the things I keep on me are somewhat press-specific, but I hope that this list can come in handy for those in need.
My Press Essentials
Zoom H1 recorder – I use this guy to record all of my interviews and any panels I am covering. I’m a big fan of Zoom’s field recorders, and the small size of this one makes it great for all my convention needs.
Protective case for recorder
Extra AAA batteries – the H1 runs on AAA batteries, and because I always prepare for the worst, I bring more batteries than I expect I’ll need.
Rollbahn spiral notebook – This one is my designated “Interview Notebook,” where I’ve written down all my notes and questions for each interview. I don’t like traditional lined notebooks, and prefer the faint gridlines on the Rollbahn. I also write down my schedule of events in here.
Appointed spiral office notepad – I use a separate notebook for taking notes during panels. This one by Appointed is great because the binding is at the top, rather than on the side, making it easier to flip to the next page while I’m speed-writing. It’s also sturdy enough to withstand writing for an hour without a flat surface.
Carhartt Large Packbackpack – I carry around a lot of stuff at SDCC, and this backpack has never let me down. I was searching for a tall backpack with a padded hip belt and water bottle holders, and landed on this one. It’s roomy without tempting me to overpack.
Arthritis Tylenol – For my creaky joints.
Nuun hydration tablets – I am pretty much on the go all the time at SDCC, and I can walk upwards of 12 miles a day at the con. I used Nuun tablets to rehydrate when I was training for my last half marathon, and I keep some on me in case I start feeling sluggish.
Hydroflask water bottle
First aid kit – I used to do a lot of camping, which has impacted my convention packing habits. I keep a small first aid kit on me in case I or anyone else needs any help. Safety pins are a cosplayer’s best friend!
Extra socks – I only pack wool or synthetic running socks for conventions to minimize the risk of blisters, but I pack an extra pair just in case. Cushioned running socks are an absolute must.
Sweater – Some panel rooms can be chilly.
Fan – It can get quite muggy in San Diego, and I hate the feeling of sweatiness when I have to run around from place to place. I have a handheld one with Bulbasaur on it that is flat and packs easily into my backpack.
KF94 masks – I like KF94s because they don’t pull on my ears so much.
Some Extras I Keep On Me
Belt bag – In case I want to keep anything on my person, instead of in my backpack.
Plastic folder – To protect any documents or single issue comics I pick up over the weekend.
Nasacort – Allergies are no joke.
Anti-histamines – Allergies are no joke, still.
Find Me Gluten-Free (app) – I have celiac disease, so gluten is my Kryptonite. Unfortunately I can’t eat a lot of convention center food without running the risk of a gluten exposure, so I use this app to help me locate celiac-friendly food near me.
Red Hood action figure – I like to keep an action figure on me for cute photo ops at conventions. Last year I took my Tim Drake Red Robin figure. What’s better than a tiny, angry Jason Todd, anyways?
And that’s that! SDCC is a wonderful experience and there’s really no “wrong” way to attend. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Have fun, and happy trails!