How To Save Money At Tech Conferences

travel coupon codes for tech conferences

Savvy Savings Strategies for Tech Conference Conventions:

It’s that time of year once again when all of your geek-gamer friends and co-workers want to attend the latest tech conferences. Perhaps, you are a little apprehensive due to your somewhat limited budget, and the rather pricey costs involved to secure transportation and lodging.

You really want to go but do not want to pay a small fortune to join in the fun. Relax, you are in luck because there are many ways to save money when booking your trip. Come explore some unique ways to save some bucks!

1. Use Coupon Websites For Hotels, Flights and Rental Cars.

CouponJournal.org is one of the biggest coupon websites.

When it comes to travel costs, always use coupons when you can. While flights tend to not have significant coupons available, they will have seat sales once in a while that can save you a huge amount.

Hotels and Rental Cars are a different story. It’s not unheard of to get 30-40% off the total costs if you use promo codes, or booking with ‘unpublished rates’ on sites like Hotwire or Priceline.

2. Look For Early Sign-Up Deals.

early sign up deals


Let’s first consider purchasing your ticket to the conference. Lots of times, the tech company host provides incentives for early sign-up. This discount could be anywhere from five percent on up to as much as twenty-five percentage off the original purchase price.

Even if the website doesn’t show a discounted price for early sign-up, then don’t hesitate to contact the company and ask for one. Most companies are pretty accommodating and want to attract smart and savvy people like you.

3. Use Group Rates.

use group rates

Another great way to save on the entrance fee is to get a group rate. Surely, you have a few or maybe a dozen of friends that would be interested in attending that conference hosted in sunny San Diego, California or dazzling Las Vegas, Nevada.

4. Search For Student Discounts

student discounts - tech conference tips

Another sought after discount is a student one. You will need to provide your student identification card to be eligible for the discount.

5. Offer to Volunteer At The Event.

volunteer at a tech conference

Furthermore, you might even be able to score a completely free ticket by volunteering at one of the tech conferences. Contact the host from the information listed on the website and see if you can work either as registrant on the day of the conference or be a guest speaker. Moreover, there might be a competition such as a hackathon or codefest that could gain you free access.

Finally, have you considered offering to blog about the event in exchange for a free ticket? This might take some negotiation, but it is definitely worth the effort. Now that’s the ticket! Let’s move onto finding you a place to stay.

6. AAA Discounts At The Hotel

Spoiler alert, hotels that are hosting conventions typically tend to be more expensive. Therefore, you might want to inquire about specific discounts such as the American Automobile Association (AAA) membership or apply earned points from customer loyalty rewards program. With the rewards program, you might be able to obtain a free room or at the very least a discounted price.

7. Stay in a Surrounding Hotel.

surrounding hotels at a convention

Another great option is to find a different hotel, not the conference site, that is within walking distance to the convention. If it is a chain hotel like Best Western or Holiday Inn, then their room rates will be much cheaper.

8. Have a Roommate For Your Hotel Room.

Additionally, standard hotel rooms usually offer two queen size beds or two double beds which means that at least two people could share a room. This could be an exciting throw back to your college dorm days where you enjoyed late-night chats and maybe a couple of shots too.

9. AirBnB

airbnb

Staying at Airbnb is yet another possibility, especially if you are traveling with a group. Renting a home through Airbnb would allow you to buy and cook your own meals which translates to saving you a ton of dining dollars. Now that your accommodations are covered, let’s move onto transportation.

10. Transportation Tips


Like lodging, transportation fares can increase or decrease depending upon how early you make your reservations. Plan out your route and consider the cost benefit of each option. For example, if you were to drive, then you would incur gas, tolls and parking costs. If you are traveling in a group, then you could split those expenses.

However, if you drive then you might require lodging for an additional day or two which will increase your costs. Sometimes driving is not possible, so then you opt for a bus, train or plane. Again by making your plane or train reservations in advance you will save money. Once you arrive at the airport, bus station or train station, you need to navigate to your final destination.

11. Renting a Car Has Risks.

You might be tempted to rent a car but remember city parking can be difficult to find and expensive. City hotels typically charge on the average $20 a day. You could always use Uber or Lyft for the last leg of your journey. Transportation has been resolved; let’s move onto breakfast, lunch and dinner.

12. Food Tricks For Meals:


Everyone must eat; there is no getting around that fact. However, you can significantly cut down on your food costs by doing a few things. A lot of chain hotels like Holiday Inn offer a free continental breakfast. Seize it and maybe even take a few apples or coffee for the road.

That brings us to lunch and dinner. Often lunch is included with the price of the conference ticket. In that case you are set, but if not then find a nearby deli and get a sandwich and a bottle of water. Another frugal option is to buy some easy snack foods like yogurt, soft pretzels or go to McDonald’s or Burger King and eat like a king for under $7.

By now you can probably feel that your pockets are getting heavier with all the extra coinage you have saved. Dinner is the meal that can make or break your budget. Yikes! The biggest way to save is don’t buy drinks with dinner. Does this mean you have to forego alcohol your entire trip? Absolutely not, just be smart about it. You and your friends could go buy some wine or beer at the local market. Take it back to the hotel room and host your own extended happy hour. Why not make a party out of it? Just order some pizzas and salads for dinner, and life will be grand.

Planning ahead will enable you to obtain the cheapest entry fee and the best rates for travel and lodging. So go ahead and book your tech conference stay. Take the time and do a little research on lodging and transportation costs to ensure that you are getting the best possible price. Happy gaming!