How to Survive SXSW: What to Bring and How to Party

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Continuing my blog on how to survive SXSW (read part one on how to prepare), here’s my list of “must haves” to pack for Austin. And, if you’re keen on parties, I’ve added some points to remember when planning your nightly party hopping activities.

Stay hydrated, my friends.

What to bring:

  • Comfortable walking shoes are an absolute necessity. Don’t leave home without a pair! The SXSW crowds are easy-going and certainly not formal, so be relaxed and most important…be comfortable.
  • Charging your many devices (cell phones, tablets, etc.) isn’t as easy as it seems. Of course, don’t forget to bring your chargers! In addition, you might want to consider investing in a mobile charging device, in case all the power outlets in a three-mile radius are unavailable. I recommend the following products: anything from Mophie (best for Apple devices), Goal Zero’s solar kits, and the PowerMonkey and PowerGorilla products from PowerTraveller.
  • A person with a power strip is a god!
  • Energy for your core. And lots of it. The lines at the Austin coffee houses and eateries are dauntingly long and inconvenient. So, bring your own form of caffeine and nourishment. Daily, I packed a couple CLIF bars, a bottle of “5-Hour Energy,” a water bottle, and a couple packages of GU Energy Chomps. Om nom nom…
  • It’s imperative that you keep hydrated and prepared for early mornings and long evenings.
  • Business cards. Lots of ‘em.
  • A comfortable daypack, satchel, or something similar.  Pack it in and pack it out. You’re at the most unique event in the world, so get ready to be connected and be constantly on the go.

Be a party goer:

  • RSVP for everything. Don’t let anyone tell you different.
  • Register for all your forums, panels, and parties through Eventbrite.com, which is used and endorsed by SXSW.
  • Always, always RSVP with a +1. You never know who will want to go with you—colleagues and otherwise.
  • For additional useful SXSW party planning tools, visit www.do512.com and www.rsvpster.com (you can register for the advance alerts on 2014 SXSW parties).
  • Pace yourself. Hydrate. There’s always a party to attend the next day.

Let’s compare notes! Follow me on Twitter: @InterprosePR and @PRAlford. I’ll be in Austin for the 2014, SXSWi, March 6-9. Hope to see you there!

Enjoy this Interprose video production from the 2013 SXSWi: