Every year, when San Diego Comic-Con ends, there’s only one question on most attendee’s minds: When can we do this again?
Soon, thousands will be able to answer that question definitively, as Comic-Con International has revealed that Preregistration for San Diego Comic-Con 2016 — the online badge sale in which general attendees who attended in 2015 get a first shot at scoring a golden ticket — will take place on Saturday, November 14 at 9AM PT.
In order to be eligible for Preregistration, as previously mentioned, you must have attended San Diego Comic-Con 2015 as a general attendee (press, professionals, volunteers, and other special groups will have their registration at a later date) and to have validated your unique Badge ID printed on your 2015 badge by September 15.
On the day of the sale, beginning at 8AM, you’ll be able to log into the EPIC Registration Waiting Room, where you’ll need your Registration Code (which you can find in the “Registration Info” tab once you’ve logged into your Member ID), your Member ID, last name, and credit card information. Beginning shortly after 9AM, the waiting room will randomly sort you into an order to purchase budges – in a system basically identical to last year’s system.
During the sale, attendees will be able to purchase up to three badges – including one for themselves (though you’ll need the last name and Member ID of anyone you’re purchasing for, and each person must also be eligible for Preregistration on their own). Start buddying up now.
New this year, Comic-Con International will be utilizing both RFID technology in badges, as well as physically mailing them to U.S. residents. According to the Toucan Blog, RFID badges “are extemely hard to duplicate, which addresses the problems… with counterfeit badging”. Attendees will still need stop by at some point during the convention to pick up your bag, Sourvenir Book, Events Guide, and lanyard – and international attendees and child registration (for those under 12) will also still have to pick up their badges onsite. Domestic attendees will be able to enter/confirm their shipping address during checkout in Preregistration – but note that all badges will be shipped to the buyer. So for those working in groups, you may need to plan ahead to ship badges individually from there.
[UPDATE] Comic-Con International has revealed that although “the exact badge shipping time frame is still in development”, they “hope to ship badges about 4 weeks prior to Comic-Con 2016”.
As always, this sale does not guarantee that those who are eligible to participate walk away with a badge. For years now, the demand by those wanting to attend the pop culture behemoth has far outweighed the actual number of badges available. CCI is always hesitant to relay actual numbers, but we roughly estimate that there are around 55,000 badges up for grabs in Preregistration — which would put your odds of scoring one somewhere around 50%.
Compare that to the roughly 6% chance of getting a badge in Open Registration — the online badge sale that “should launch in early 2016” and is open to anyone and everyone provided they have signed up for a Member ID — and you begin to understand why this sale can sometimes feel like a life-or-death situation. In the world of Comic-Con badge sales, any advantage helps.
Prices to attend this year are up slightly, five years across the board just like last year. That means a four day badge will run you $245, compared to last year’s $220.
Here’s a look at 2016 prices:
You can read more about the exact process of purchasing a badge in Comic-Con International’s new Preregistration Walkthrough. And as always, you can also join us on our Live SDConCast during the sale, as we discuss any common error messages, thoughts about the new policies this year, why Kerry’s pugs keep running through the frame, and much more.
Open Registration – the badge sale open to everyone – will take place in early 2016. Sign up for a Member ID and make sure you’re opted in to receive e-mails if you haven’t already.
Welcome, folks, to San Diego Comic-Con 2016.