A week has passed since the San Diego Comic-Con International hotel lottery aka the Hotelpocalypse (Hotel Apocalypse) happened on Wednesday 26th April, 2017. Two days ago on Monday 1st May 2017, some of those that took part in the hotel lottery learned of their fate, some succeeded in obtaining one of their top 6 choices, some managed a downtown hotel that wasn’t part of their top 6 while the rest like many others, rests in the hands of onPeak as they wait for the second round of hotel notifications on Monday 8th May 2017.
While the hotel lottery itself went smoothly and without technical hitches as seen in previous years, the process of how they handled the requests either remained vague or contradicted itself last year. In this year’s hotel lottery however they did clearly state how hotel requests will be handled which meant that everyone wasn’t in a state of panic trying to fill in and submit their request forms as fast as they can possibly type.
Forms will be processed based on the time at which a user was granted access to the form — NOT the time at which the form was submitted
Last year everyone waited up to three hours in a waiting room before the lottery even began, this year however everyone only needed to wait up to an hour in the waiting room before being randomly assigned to access the hotel request form.
Some suggested the hotel lottery should be open only to badge holders, while this may increase the success rate of a hotel room for badge holders it simply may not be that easy for onPeak. Many people who failed to get a badge attend San Diego Comic-Con International to be able to experience all the outside events and they too bring money to the San Diego economy. At the end of the day it’s money that matters, San Diego itself fights to keep Comic-Con International in San Diego because it brings millions of dollars into its economy. In fact the hotels in San Diego have even admitted that the profit they make from Comic-Con International alone helps keep them afloat for the rest of the year. It’s why they don’t currently have a hotel lottery for badge holders only, they know that if badge holders and non badge holders want to attend San Diego Comic-Con International badly enough then they will pay anything to stay downtown. The San Diego downtown hotels know this all too well which is why they charge extortionate rates for their rooms that weren’t part of the hotel lottery. It’s why onPeak has a limited amount of rooms they can offer during the hotel lottery as the hotel themselves reserve their own block to charge at a higher rate. Unfortunately not all of us have that kind of money to burn.
Some suggested priority of the hotel lottery should be given to press, professionals and those that work in the industry. As a member of the accredited press for San Diego Comic-Con International 2017 I can understand the convenience having a downtown hotel would provide, after all who wants to carry their photography and video equipment for long distances. However we’ve already been provided complimentary badges to an event which is notoriously hard to obtain badges for in the first place. It would be greedy to ask them to provide you a downtown hotel as well and it wouldn’t be fair to other regular badge holders.
However it’s not all doom and gloom, for even if you didn’t manage to get a hotel from the lottery or through the waitlist, the early bird hotel sale or even managed to bag yourself a room well in advance before any of the sales happened there is still hope. There is a community out there of great people willing to trade or exchange their hotels to others who may need them. One such community is the Friends of Comic-Con forum which you can check out by clicking here.
Good luck to all those still waiting to hear back about their hotel requests on Monday 8th May 2017. You should hear back by Monday 15th May 2017 if you have successfully managed to get a hotel.
What did you think of the Hotelpocalypse experience? Let us know in the comments below.
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