San Diego Comic-Con 2018 Early Bird Hotel Sale Now Open

We don’t yet have a date for Open Registration – but we do now know when Early Bird Hotel Sales are happening, and the answer is right now.

The Early Bird Hotel Sale is back for 2018, with reservations now open through onPeak.

Just like in previous years, the Early Bird sale is not for downtown hotels, but rather for hotels in further-out areas, like Mission Valley or the airport. These hotels are typically a little cheaper than the downtown offerings (rates run from $170-$215 per night for a single occupancy room), which will be available during the General Hotel Sale at a later date, but attendees have to use transportation in order to get downtown to the convention center.

In recent years, this has become easier than ever, in part thanks to an improved Shuttle Service offered by CCI, which typically offers 24-hour service beginning Thursday AM. And, several of these hotels offer free parking – so you may not have to pay for parking your entire Comic-Con week.

Also, while CCI cautions, “If you do not currently have a badge, please DO NOT purchase prepaid, non-refundable hotel rooms” – we don’t think that’s a sign that a badge is now required for hotel reservations in the General Hotel Sale. Rather, it’s likely just CCI cautioning folks not to count on Open Registration, as these hotels are non-refundable.

The Early Bird hotels sell out much slower than the regular hotel sale (which we dub Hotelpocalypse), but each room requires full prepayment at the time of booking, and there will be no refunds or exchanges on rooms – so for those even hoping for a downtown hotel room, this might not be the hotel sale for you. There’s also a three-to-four-night minimum stay on each room, which for some hotels must include both Friday, July 20, and Saturday, July 21.

The Early Bird rates will be available through April 25, 2018 – which, if that’s anything to judge from previous years, means that the General Hotel Sale will be taking place somewhere near that date. However, it’s worth noting that for 2017, the Early Bird offers were originally announced as being through May 1, and the General Hotel Sale took place on April 26, 2017.

Here’s a closer look at some of the Early Bird rules:

Hotel rates on their own are exorbitant, which is why one of the biggest sticking points for Comic-Con International to stay in San Diego continues to be the hotel block. These are locked-in, negotiated rates that CCI has secured for attendees, so that you aren’t paying $1,000 per night. That’s why we highly recommend booking within their system for the best rate, even if the General Sale is always a mess.

Want to know more about the difference between the Early Bird Hotel Sale and the General Hotel Sale? Check out our simplified comparison. For more information on the sale visit the CCI Early Bird page.

Will you be purchasing a hotel in the Early Bird sale? Let us know in the comments.

About Kerry Dixon

Kerry Dixon is Editor-in-Chief of The San Diego Comic-Con Unofficial Blog and the site's resident panel guru.
  • semigeekgirl

    With everything else being so early this year, it seems really unlikely that CCI will wait until late April again for the General Hotel Sale. Maybe they just assume most of the Early Bird inventory will sell out before then?

  • Matt

    5th(6th?) year in a row, going back to Courtyard San Diego Mission Valley. Last stop on the shuttle route (pros/cons), walking distance to a real restaurant/grocery store, and cookies when you come in at night!

  • We’re pretty confused/surprised by that late April date as well.

  • maxhdrm

    Luckily the place I stayed at last year let me pre-register last year but geez..these are NOT worth the money and definitely NOT worth all the restrictions. Is it really necessary to have such tight cheeked restrictions when the Con pretty much sells out of everything? Some of it I understand but the no refund policy right up front is nonsense. It’s like an automatic gratuity, if it’s a guarantee then where’s the motivation for excellent service? When I read on yelp or hotels or any other service for many of these places they make a lot of mistakes, are rude to guests and often fail to provide key services because they keep your money either way. I suggest sticking to a good place if you’ve already had good experiences and keep in mind, it’s just a place to lay your head.