One last thing that people seem to ignore or forget about attending a con overseas is a packing plan. Some people just throw everything in a bag with a wing and a prayer. Meanwhile, other people want to pack everything including the kitchen sink. Both plans — not so hot.
If you’re attending a con as a cosplayer, a serious packing plan is a must! You should be able to bring not just your travel essentials but your costume and props as well. Select and design your costume to be able to withstand being stuffed into a suitcase. Try to bring clothes that can double as street clothes and as part of your costume.
Make sure your props adhere to flight safety standards so they are not confiscated at the airport. Decant liquid supplies such as skin care and cosmetics into smaller travel-sized containers for the same reason — you don’t want to leave them behind at the security check! Last but not least, try to organize all your things in clear ziplock bags to keep them tidy and prevent spills.
If you’re attending as a regular participant or to cover the event for media, your main concern becomes weight and portability. I went a little overboard in the first two cons and overpacked my gear — which is not a good idea when you have to lug it around all day at a crowded convention.
These days I just bring a quality P&S camera, a mobile device like an iPad, and a phone with 3G connectivity, and leave the DSLR and full-sized laptop for local conventions. If you plan well and have a good idea of what you’re doing you can do a great report with pared down tools as you do with the whole shebang.
One last tip: bring calling cards or coscards! Overseas cons are a great place to network and to meet new friends and colleagues, so don’t let the opportunity pass you by!
See you guys at Anime Festival Asia! 😀