Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Fanfest 2014 - 12 Steps to Happiness

On Monday Fanfest tickets went on sale. Go get yours now!

If you've never been and want to know what to expect, here are my reports/photos from Fanfest 2013.

Wednesday - Golden Circle
Thursday - First day and Charity Dinner
Friday - Fanfest and Pub Crawl
Fanfest Saturday
Party on Top of the World + Blue Lagoon

I'm going to do the Wednesday to the Monday this year. I did the Golden Circle earlier this year and I don't really want to do it again so soon. So will be in Iceland just in time for any potential Tweetfleet Meet. I know from experience that flying is not a good idea on the Sunday after the party so will stay that extra day and probably go Blue Lagoon to recover. I'm no veteran, but this will be my 3rd Fanfest and here is what I have learnt so far.....

1. Buy booze as you arrive.
Buying drink in Iceland is a tad difficult as it is only sold in special shops to take away. A mate had particular issues last year. As you arrive there is a massive booze shop in the airport, you cannot miss it. Get yourself a bottle/crate there!

2. Take the Bus
The main international airport is a fair distance from Reyjavik so a taxi is expensive. The FlyBus is a great option and has deals with most hotels in the city. You take the main bus to the bus terminal and then minibuses to the various hotels. The main bus does have WiFi for the 45 minute journey but, like the Harpa, when its full of Eve Geeks who all have smartphones and tablets it gets a bit strained.

3. Pack the right clothing.
It's Iceland. You'll need everything from Arctic survival gear to beachwear! Well, may be that is a bit of an exaggeration. But last year I saw everything from heavy blizzards to rain to hail to high wind to a lovely calm day with warm sunshine.... and that was in the same day! We're a bit later in the year for 2014, but still it is worth being prepared.

4. Card is King
I always take some ISK in cash, no not the in game currency, the currancy in Iceland is ISK (you see what they did there). However, there are few places on earth that are more 'card friendly' than Iceland. Even if you are just buying one drink, you can use your plastic. Same for taxi's even. Makes for intersting (and long!) bank statements after the party! ATM's are plentiful.

5. Prepare for the Prices
Iceland is not cheap. Being an island where most things are imported and the lasting effects of the global ecconomic crash means that Iceland is not a cheap place. It's not hidousely expensive, I occasionaly visit Dubai and London, they're hidousely expensive. Whilst Iceland is not as bad as those, it is not cheap.

6. Try the local Vodka
They make a local vodka in Iceland and it is rather nice. Its called.... erm.... what's it called? I cannot remember. The only time I've heard its name is when I've been, well, drinking vodka! OI Google! What's the name of that nice local Icelandic vodka?

7. Pace Yourself at the Party On Top Of The World
You'll miss out if you get there early, power-drink and then go off looking for munchies.... I know! In fact you might wake up next morning, fully clothed with a camera full of pictures you don't remember taking and no memory of the events of the previous night. Thankfully I did make it to the Blue Lagoon! Don't go too early, don't get boozed up before and you'll not miss as much.

8. Try Everything Once....
The Golden Circle is worth doing to see the amazing Icelandic scenery. You can bored your friends by saying "I was there!" when you see the opening scene of Prometheus (the waterfall with the engineer). The Charity Dinner wasn't as good in 2013 as it was in 2012 (not as much ceremony) but it is worth doing. This year I got to sit next to CCP Guard plus the food was excellent! The Pub Crawl with a Dev is an experience, its much more difficult working out if CCP Fozzie is trolling you about T3 Orca's when you've had a lot to drink! Do the Blue Lagoon. Try the puffin. Go for a hotdog at that famous hotdog stand near the Harpa. Have breakfast at the Laundromat Cafe. Go to the Penis Museum (yes there is one). Go exploring!

9. .....Except the Horrible Rotted Shark Drink.
Its rank!

10. Get to Round Tables Early
If you are going to one of the round-tables and its one you REALLY need to go to, get there early. The popular ones tend to be standing room only very quickly and many find they cannot get in.

11. Enjoy Yourself!
Everyone there is mad about important internet spaceships and I've met some amazing people there. So grab a drink, get talking about spaceships and have a great time!

12. Give it an Extra Day
Sunday might sound the day to go home, but think about it. If your doing it right you had a very good time on Saturday night and into Sunday morning and you don't want to be travelling the same day as that! Book onto the Blue Lagoon trip, have a chilled Sunday and relax. Get the early flight out on the Monday morning!


  1. I would second the bit about not flying out on the Sunday. This past Fanfest I took the Sunday flight home and regretted it badly. I basically went from the Party to the hotel, had a shower then got on a bus to the airport at 4am. Not good.

  2. I think the booze is called Black Death and it's a Brennevin. Can't wait until fanfest 2014. It's gonna be awesome!