BlogHer is right around the corner. I was so excited to see that it was coming back to California! I’ve attended two BlogHer cons in the past – once attending, once speaking. It can be an overwhelming experience, and I thought I’d list the essentials on what to pack!
Sharpie pens – You’ll be shaking hands and exchanging business cards with fellow bloggers and brand reps. Sometimes those business cards are glossy and ballpoint pens are not going to write on them. Do yourself a favor and bring Sharpies! They write on everything, including bathroom stalls, arms, faces, and so on. I like different colored pens so my notes pop from the usual black ink.
Business cards – This is a no brainer! Haven’t ordered your cards? Well, either hurry up or print your own now! I love MOO Cards. These are my cards and they always get a reaction. #boom
(And if you’re ordering glossy… bring those Sharpie pens and lend them to your fellow attendees!)
Business Card Holder – If you ordered from Moo, your cards will come in a handy cardboard box that you can bring with you. But you might want to transfer your cards in a cute case and put your traded cards into the Moo box.
Small Notebook – I am old school and still take notes on paper, especially when I meet brand reps. I also like to jot down blog post ideas, resources from the brands or bloggers, random thoughts.
Scarf – Hotel conference rooms are usually freezing. It’s like a test to see whose nipples are going to shoot out first. AMIRITE? Take a lightweight scarf with you – for the plane, and then for those freezing conference rooms. Scarves also serve as a cover-up for swimsuits or to camouflage a blouse stain. I dug around and found this Marimekko scarf on clearance at Target!!
Packing cubes – I keep touting these because they’re my number one go-to for any travel. eBags Packing Cubes come in a set of three assorted sizes and you can organize your clothes in all kinds of combos. I stuff all my underwear and bras in the smallest cube. Then outfits are rolled into the medium cube. All else – sweaters, jeans, scarves, jewelry (in a Ziploc), workout clothes – they all go into the large cube. If you’re checking luggage, it just makes things easier to find and zip back up if TSA digs around your suitcase. Before you order them, be sure to sign up for eBates with my referral link, click on the shopping portal to eBags, and instantly get 10% cash back on your purchase! Dudes. Save some money.
Comfortable Shoes – Think you’re going to wear heels on the con floor? Aww that’s precious. Bring comfortable shoes – I vote for at least two pairs to alternate. Booties are in fashion – good thing we’re in the middle of Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale! Modcloth and Target are also my go-tos for trendy, comfy shoes.
I have a pair of red Saltwater Sandals, but you can play it “safe” with the tan ones.
These are on my wishlist – leopard! Leopard is a great neutral.
Reusable Water Bottle – I’m cheap and don’t want to buy water at the airport. Bring a water bottle so you can fill up at the airport water fountains. Use an insulated bottle and keep your liquids colder or warmer.
You will probably get tons of water bottles or tumblers as swag. It’s up to you if you want to pack these in your luggage on your way home, or give them away to a local shelter or donate them to hotel staff. Or better yet, don’t take so many of them. I mean, do you really need five tumblers with <insert brand you don’t care about> logo?
Snacks – for the plane, for the car ride, when you’re hungry in your hotel room and don’t want to spend money on room service. Assorted nuts, candies, granola bars, you name it – bring it. Your plane ride might suck. Or it may be super amazing. I bring Justin’s nut butter in pouches as well as snack bars for emergencies.
You’ll probably also get snacks from brand reps, so you just pack enough for the plane/car ride to BlogHer.
The Rest of It
This is what I would pack this year (and every year) for any conference… here we go!
- Ziploc bags – different sizes for different things. You can storeÂ business cards, dirty socks, food, ice, etc in these suckers. Versatile like MacGyver!
- Small purse or cross-body bag – You won’t really need your giant purse unless you’re using it as a tote too. Take a small purse with you when you head out to parties or with fellow bloggers for a night on the town!
- Noise-canceling earbuds/headphones – these BOHM headphones have gotten thousands of good reviews.
- Flip flops – see below
- Swimsuit – just pack one
- Laptop or tablet – you choose. Note you may be lugging this piece of tech wherever you go on the con floor, so it’s up to you how much weight you want to take with you. Some people do just fine with their smartphone and charger. (I dunno how they do it!)
- Backpack or laptop bag – this has to do be a MacGyver bag – it will house your tech of choice plus your wallet and perhaps swag too. Make it work for you. I don’t take time off my day job so I have my laptop with me at all times.
- Camera – this is up to you.
- Small bills – or make sure you can find an ATM. Yes, you should tip your housekeeping staff. Karma, y’all.
- Mobile apps – Uber, Lyft, the number to a cab.
- Reusable bag or zippered bag that you can take as a carry-on – this is dependent on how much room you have left in your carry-on/luggage. You will be bringing how a ton of swag (which will include reusable bags), so you may not need another from home.
- Your makeup – but pare it down
- Clothes that work well with each other – jeans, blouses, dress. You may be interchanging items to create different looks with just 6 pieces.
- Cardigan or sweater – Beware the nipple test. (It is currently a million degrees in LA, but the conference is indoors.)
- Pajamas – you don’t know how many times I’ll forget to pack PJs because they’re on the bed and I think, “Oh I’ll remember when I wake up!”
- Sneakers and workout clothes – Dependent on what you have packed and if you’re participating in any of the sponsored fitness events. Or you know, maybe you just want to keep fit while at BlogHer. Do it. But be sure you workout or you’ve just wasted some good packing space.
- Advil or Tylenol – your feet will be sore and tired. Might as well take an Advil before heading to bed.
- …and last but not least – positive attitude. It’s going to be tiring to walk so much but think of all the relationships you’ll be cultivating – both with bloggers and with brands!
You are the face of your brand. Make it good!
Have fun, bloggers! I hope you enjoy BlogHer as much as I have in the past! I’m excited to attend this year!