We had so much fun making a “Seven deadly sins of SXSW” list, that we thought that the theme might be applicable to other facets of the conference and Festival. So, without further ado, here are the seven deadlier sins of SXSW. These are bits of advice and things to consider that will make your SXSW eXperience the most enjoyable.
1. Losing Power: Follow this simple rule. Always. Be. Charging. It doesn’t matter how long you think your phone’s battery can last. It can’t beat SXSW. It simply cannot. Hours of events and texts and emails and photo opportunities and keeping up on Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and Facebook, while you’re at events HOSTED by Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and Facebook means your battery is going to make a break for empty. If you see an outlet or an open charging station and you have a moment, seize that moment and you won’t miss moments in the future.
2. Losing Steam: SXSW isn’t a spring. It isn’t even a marathon. Have you ever seen those ultra marathons, where the runners go for over 100 miles like Forrest Gump, stopping occasionally to get a nap? It’s one of those. And if you treat it like a sprint, you’re going to lose energy too quickly to dance with P. Diddy at the 3am Kanye/Jay-Z show in an industrial factory (true story). Eat when you can. Get coffee where you can. Rest in lounges and pace yourself where you can. You are the only one who can help yourself out in this race and the goal isn’t to go out in a blaze of glory…it’s to finish the race.
3. Losing Access: Whether it is a SXSW badge or wristband or an activation’s lanyard or even a specifically colored wristband issued at the door, your ability to get into an area is dependent upon it. Lose that or forget it in your room or at home and you are not going to be able to talk your way in. SXSW will not reprint or reissue credentials or access for any reason. Lose your badge/lanyard/wristband and you lose SXSW. Don’t lose SXSW.
4. Breaking The Rules: SXSW has a lot of rules. Bag policies, photo policies, line policies, parking policies, and even a new bike/scooter policy has been introduced to cut down on pedestrian/wheeled conveyance collisions. And attendance to any event, whether official or not, is subject to the regulations of the hosts. You don’t want to miss out on the best set/movie/activation because you were desperate to get that video of yourself in that place with those people at that time; nor do you want to end up with huge tickets and fines as your most significant souvenir from SXSW 2019. Follow the rules and get the most out of the conference.
5. Being Greedy: Tip your bartenders. We cannot stress this enough. Our staff and wait staff both work overtime and extra hours during SXSW. Despite the fact that venues may be bought out, the work is no different, and it’s just as toileting as it is normally. Yes appealing to the goodness of your heart doesn’t work, we have another reason to heed this good advice. The number of people who do not ship during SXSW far outweighs the number of people who do. A good tipper during this week stands out. It may result in extra attention, more quality service, or Little extras that makes the week so much better. Regardless, we are posts of SXSW as the city, state, and the culture. We should be good house and show some love to the people we have invited here.
6. Getting Dehydrated/Overserving Yourself: There will be any number of dehydrating beverages available at every single event during SXSW. Carry a bottle with you, and be prepared to refill it, drinking water wherever you can. Discount so will not only pay dividends with regard to the number of adult beverages you might ingest, but with the amount of walking and I am standing, it will help replenish your body as a whole. Now additionally, it behooves us as a responsible people to conduct ourselves responsibly. Too many stories and too many regrets are created by not monitoring and measuring the amount of alcohol you and just versus the amount of water you ingest. Do you want to remember everything about this experience, so why would you blur it beyond memory?
7. Ruining Others’ Experience: Whether it’s trying to cut the line or talking through a concert (a true Austin sin) or watching a show through a phone screen in front of other concert-goers, there are myriad ways to ruin the experience of others in attendance. Any of these can make this entire endeavor an exercise in rudeness that you just don’t want attached to you. Austin is a laid back city in a laid back state. Everyone is here to have a great time and if you do right by others, they will do right by you. It’s a golden rule amid our collection of SX-sins.