6 Things to Help You Get the Most Out of #SXSW 2014

1) Stay downtown.  We tried to save money and commute from a friend’s house 20 min away from downtown Austin, but that really bit into our time – both with sessions and with networking events. (Note to friends – we love you and really appreciate your generosity.)

2) Book a hotel and flight early. Even if you not sure you’ll be attending in 2014, book a room as soon as they will let you. They sell out quickly, and flights can be crazy expensive if you wait too long.

3) Ask friends attending if there are parties not on the official SXSW list. And pre-register for these – if you don’t, you may be sorely disappointed.  Some of these are really cool and we found to be great networking.

4) Make time to walk the trade show floor. There are a lot of amazing companies and networking opportunities that you don’t want to miss. It’s not just about the sessions and the parties.

5) Fly into Austin. To save money, we flew into Killeen, TX, and flew out of San Antonio, but because of rental car costs going one-way, we ended up spending almost as much money if we’d just flown into Austin (flight prices are high during SXSW). And it was really time consuming.  But we did see The Alamo and the River Walk!

6) Make the most of your time. Some sessions and parties will consume your time and you won’t be able to make the “next event.” Don’t worry about it; SXSW is huge and you can’t do everything.  If you find a good event or session, get all you can from it because the next one may be a dud.

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