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Keycon 2015 - We Need a Chicago Hotel Plan

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Attention Geekhackers:

We can organize to buy keycaps around the world, but we can't come together to make some hotel reservations?  I do not believe that.

I joke around sometimes, but this is serious beans.  We should try to negotiate a block of rooms at a hotel in Chicago.

It would help if we knew the venue of Keycon 2015, so we can try to be within walking distance.

However, even without knowing where exactly we are going, we can plan a hotel. 

Step the First:  Does anybody have a friend, relative, sister, cousin, uncle, brother, ex-wife, current lover, anybody you know that works for a hotel or hotel company?  If yes, then you should be named the honorary king and/or queen (or both) of Keycon 2015, because you can get a us a discount rate, if you pick up the phone and call your contact person.  Don't be shy.  Maybe you haven't spoken to that person in 20 years.  So what.  Call and pretend like you didn't realize it's been so long.  Be like, "hey bud/bro/sis/uncle/ex-wife, wussup?  So can you get a deal on some hotel rooms for some nerds I know on the internets?  kewl beans, thx."  It will work.  Trust me.

Step the Second:  If Step the First doesn't work, then I will have to call hotels and try to negotiate a block rate.  This sounds great, but all hotels will want to know how many rooms we want to rent, and for how long, of course, so this is where the planning part comes in.  You need to work on your planning skillz.  Read a book.  Take a seminar at the Adult Learning Annex.  Read a self-help pamphlet.  Watch an infomercial.  I dunno.  Make a Plan.  Stick to the Plan.  Remember, failing to plan is planning to fail.  I just learned that at the Learning Annex.  So, let's get the dates you want to be in Chicago.  And how many rooms.  I want my own room, b/c I shy, and I don't want you guys to see me in my sexy sleepwear, but some of you might want to share a room to save money.  Which is a good idea.

Step the Third:  Group-buy.  This is the worst option, because it involves collecting money up-front.  However, it is also the easiest way to negotiate a group rate, when offer to pay up front for a block of rooms.  If we had enough rooms, they would let us use a conference room for free.  But that would take a lot of rooms.  Plus, it involves collecting money up-front.

Anyway, can we try to plan this?  Please?

we need a venue as well. i'm all ears here. also, if you are a student of university of illinois at chicago, please shoot me a PM

Joey Quinn:

--- Quote from: mkawa on Wed, 21 January 2015, 14:57:52 ---we need a venue as well. i'm all ears here. also, if you are a student of university of illinois at chicago, please shoot me a PM

--- End quote ---

PM'd I think I can help.

I would wait until we get a venue nailed down.  It's easy to get a venue, but getting one for free is the tricky part. 

My suggestion is rent a Keycon House on AirBNB, pile everyone into that, party through the night, cook a giant brunch in the morning, take a party bus to the airport, send off new friends with hugs and gourmet chocolates, and never forget.

The biggest difficulty I see is actually getting enough commitments from out-of-towners far enough in advance to reserve an exact number of rooms.  I think simply picking a hotel close to the venue, without regards for a reservation of a block of rooms, would be an achievement.

My roommate used to work in the Hilton family, he used to travel with rock bottom rates, maybe he could help us out if we need it, I'm not sure.

Another suggestion.  For the venue, get a hotel conference space.  Have the hotel cater a meal, probably lunch, then we can go out to dinner.  Because we will pay for other services, they probably will give a discount on rooms.  Everybody has to chip in a few bucks for the total event, but it could provide security and convenience for the venue, along with helping with long-term planning for attendees.  How much would a conference room for a day and catered meal cost for the expected amount of attendees, really?

Plus, I think this community has enough generosity that we will not have trouble funding such a setup and providing donations for those that are short on funds.


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