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What are the Incidental Expenses at Conference?

pamperedchef.carol

Novice Member
Jan 17, 2006
32
0
I've figured out how much registration, hotel, airfare cost. Can anyone give me an estimate of what the other costs will be? Like food, transportation from airport, product samples, etc?

Thanks a bunch from a first-time attendee!!:)
 

soonerchef

Veteran Member
Feb 17, 2006
1,526
0
Transportation via shuttle to and from airport is about $12 per one-way trip, there are mystery boxes that are anywhere from $20-$50 (I think) per box...food really depends on you, you can eat cheaply or not...I think I spent about $125 last year on food. There are our vendors there that will have the usual stuff with them that you can purchase, VIP will have some cash 'n carry items ranging anywhere from $2-$35 a piece. How much you spend is really up to you, as a first time attendee I was really excited and spent way more than I should have, I think it was like $500 for everything I bought!
 

samcmills

Member
Mar 7, 2006
70
0
My recruiter and I just decided to attend conference so I will be signing up today. I have a question about the shuttle, with the two of us would it be cheaper to hire a taxi to the hotel from the airport or do the shuttle?

Just wondered if anyone knew. I have never flown before so this will be an exciting trip from that aspect and getting to go to conference too. Any tips for a newbie would be appreciated.

Susan
 

soonerchef

Veteran Member
Feb 17, 2006
1,526
0
I think it would still be cheaper to get on the shuttle, you could probably do a yellow pages search, call and ask one of the cab companies what the cost is from the airport to the hotel and that will give you a better idea.
 

Shawnna

Senior Member
Gold Member
Feb 2, 2005
2,394
6
I stayed about 4 blocks from the conference hotel last year. I took a taxi to the airport from my hotel...I had to be there extremely early and there was no shuttle for my hotel....The taxi cost me 30.00...so, if you share it, it would be 15.00. I called the taxi service the night before and asked how much it was going to be. I am thinking last year the shuttle was 20.00 one way to the conference hotel....and then I had to walk the 4 blocks to my hotel. So, carrying luggage those few blocks was a pain and I felt the extra 10.00 was worth it for a taxi.
 

Chef Kearns

Legacy Member
Gold Member
Feb 8, 2005
3,345
6
The shuttle is $20 per person and they will load about 10 people on one shuttle. It is a real rip off!! If you can find a few others at the airport to share a cab with (the minivan type) you can get by with a low fare. If you are comfortable with this (and this being your first time you may not be) the El-Train is a very inexpensive way to get from the airport to the hotel. The cost of the train is about $3.00. There is a bit of walking involved to get from the train station to your hotel, but it is the cheapest by far.
 

soulsing

Member
Silver Member
Dec 20, 2005
65
0
question

I'm going to need transportation to my hotel as well, and my husband was concerned about me taking a taxi by myself. Unfortunately, as of right now, no one else in my cluster area has committed to going. I thought about asking a friend of mine if she'd like to come as my guest, but would I still have to pay registration for her? Is she allowed in the conference or would she just have to roam around while I was in the conference? Anyone know?
 

Chef Kearns

Legacy Member
Gold Member
Feb 8, 2005
3,345
6
She would just have to roam around while you were at conference unless you paid a full registration for her. I asked about my husband and that is what HO said. I wanted to see if he could come with me to the general sessions and meals.
 

soulsing

Member
Silver Member
Dec 20, 2005
65
0
Thanks

Thanks for the info! That's good to know. I'll see if maybe I can find someone from another cluster to travel with me. Paying another registration fee would be more than I could afford right now.
 

Chef Kearns

Legacy Member
Gold Member
Feb 8, 2005
3,345
6
Jen--you are sure to spot people in the airport once you get to Chicago. That is how I got a cab the first year. I had made plans to take the shuttle the first year, but spotted some of us (PCers) at the baggage claim and they invited me to ride with them. Then at conference I met several people who were heading back to the airport at the same I was and we planned on sharing a cab back to the airport on the last day. Don't freak out!! It will all work out. Just look for people with PC shirts on, PC luggage, PC purses or hats. They will be all over the place!! Just shimmy up to someone and make a new friend.
 

Sooner PC

Member
Sep 30, 2005
247
0
On vacation a couple of years ago, I took the train to the city from O'Hair - it was a scarry ride. This time I am flying into Midway and I will be taking the train. It goes through a different part of town.
 

Chef Kearns

Legacy Member
Gold Member
Feb 8, 2005
3,345
6
Well, it is the city and if you are not used to the city it can scare you the first time. Rest assured you are safe on the train. Don't flash your money. Don't make a big show of having luggage. Just mind your business and you'll be okay.
 

Sooner PC

Member
Sep 30, 2005
247
0
It was just me and my girlfriend on the train and we went through neighborhoods that I had only seen on TV. Nothing really happened, we just looked like tourist and being from Texas/OK - we sounded out of place too. If you could go in a group of 3 or more - you might feel more comfortable. We took a car back to the airport after our trip. BTW - we went in January and did get to see Oprah - THAT was worth the trip.
 

jwpamp

Veteran Member
Jan 13, 2006
1,646
1
To all those from out of the Chicagoland area, Chicago is an incredibly safe city. If you have questions about where things are, just ask someone. Visitors are a regular site, so no one will be picking you out of a crowd.

Downtown is an amazing place to shop, eat, etc. I love to just sit and watch while people walk by! Gino's East in Downtown (on North Wells) is a cavern like pizza joint, with the BEST Chicago pizza anywhere! Rock and Roll McDonalds (on Ontario between Clark and LaSalle) and Ed Debevic's (on North Wells) are close to there also. Great atmosphere and FUN! The waiters and waitresses at Ed's actually get really rude with you (on purpose), so show some attitude back and they will love you....it's all part of the show! Oh, and the Rainforest Cafe....cool!

I would suggest getting to Navy Pier if you have extra time in the city. It is huge, and soooo much fun! Also, check out the River....it's FREE. There are lots of places you can grab lunch and watch the boats.

Enjoy!
 

mrssyvo

Veteran Member
Sep 23, 2005
1,934
0
I agree with all of above, and also, you must see Buckingham Fountain in Grant Park, at night, it is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!!!!! It is where my (now) husband I and I first realized we were in love, although neither of us expressed it at that time. It will always be my favorite place in Chicago !!
 

DebbieJ

Legend Member
Oct 6, 2005
10,901
2
Taking the train from the airport is not all that bad. It's the cheapest way for sure! The Orange line from Midway is even easier than the Blue Line from O'Hare.
 

its_me_susan

Senior Member
Jul 31, 2005
2,053
10
soulsing said:
I'm going to need transportation to my hotel as well, and my husband was concerned about me taking a taxi by myself. Unfortunately, as of right now, no one else in my cluster area has committed to going. I thought about asking a friend of mine if she'd like to come as my guest, but would I still have to pay registration for her? Is she allowed in the conference or would she just have to roam around while I was in the conference? Anyone know?

Jen, Wear something with the PC logo - you will see soooooo many PC-ers in the airport, etc. I'm betting you will find someone to ride with.

I'm mostly concerned about being ripped off - at leadership the taxi's all charged more than they were supposed to. We didn't find out until coming home. A bunch of us shared the expense of a limo (it was just a large car).
 

AJPratt

Legend Member
Silver Member
Oct 11, 2005
6,702
4
Do the vendors at conference take credit cards? I don't like to carry a lot of cash.
 

ange13

Member
Nov 2, 2005
430
0
yes they do accept cc#. I don't carry much cash either. And you can do commission adjustments for some PC items too, but not everything.
 

Chef susan

Member
Sep 11, 2005
233
0
Chef Kearns said:
The shuttle is $20 per person and they will load about 10 people on one shuttle. It is a real rip off!! If you can find a few others at the airport to share a cab with (the minivan type) you can get by with a low fare. If you are comfortable with this (and this being your first time you may not be) the El-Train is a very inexpensive way to get from the airport to the hotel. The cost of the train is about $3.00. There is a bit of walking involved to get from the train station to your hotel, but it is the cheapest by far.

As I remember there is alot of walking involved and steps with the EL train:D --with luggage --OUCH---worth extra $$$
 

Harrle

Member
Jul 18, 2005
297
0
ange13 said:
yes they do accept cc#. I don't carry much cash either. And you can do commission adjustments for some PC items too, but not everything.

For a few years I would drive (from MN) to Lombard (just south of HO) where my cousin lives, I would spend the night at her place and then take the Metra in first thing AM the first day of conference. I would stay in a hotel with my 'clustermates' and then return via the Metra to Lombard when conference ended. I would recommend this to anyone who doesn't overpack like I do!! I found that returning after conference was the worst because at that time you could purchase conference materials (ex: mini-catalogs) to take home with you, well between those and the purchases made at the American Girl Place for my niece, boarding and locating a seat on the train was a major pain! The one thing I can say about last year and probably again this year...IF you do purchase a 'PC prize box' you can open it up - keep - trade - sell and then tape it back up and have HO ship it to your home via UPS for a fee (I think they will adjust your commission for that too?), if I remember correctly you can pack other items in the box too (paperwork, etc.) you would just pay by weight - but it's definately worth it not to have to travel home with a box and luggage and purse and your 'new conference bag!!'

Last year we drove and parked at HO and took the shuttle bus in Sunday night before conference, visited the Pier for site seeing, shopping, and a bite to eat and then called it a night so we were fresh and ready to start conference the next AM. I would recommend the HO shuttle to anyone who can arrange transportation around the time of the bus schedule - it beats finding parking and traveling with luggage by train or taxi! The nice thing about this too was that we brought a grocery bag full of snacks for the hotel room and to pack with you to take with for in between sessions - that helped cut back on costs as well.

Hope this was helpful - Enjoy Conference!
Leea:cool:
 

mrssyvo

Veteran Member
Sep 23, 2005
1,934
0
I live in Lombard- do they have shuttle buses every day from HO? My entire cluster is staying with me (They are from Indy) and we will be commuting every morning. It woudl be great if we could shuttle from HO- how do I find the schedule?
 

dannyzmom

Legend Member
Gold Member
Apr 11, 2005
9,373
17
soulsing said:
I'm going to need transportation to my hotel as well, and my husband was concerned about me taking a taxi by myself. Unfortunately, as of right now, no one else in my cluster area has committed to going. I thought about asking a friend of mine if she'd like to come as my guest, but would I still have to pay registration for her? Is she allowed in the conference or would she just have to roam around while I was in the conference? Anyone know?

Which conference wave are you attending and when are you arriving? And which airport?
Try to link up with some other Cheffers from this board who are landing when you are and heading to the same hotel. If you're coming in when I am I'd be happy to share a cab with you. I am in wave 3and will eb travelling with my husband (I am a chicken about travelling alone)
 

dannyzmom

Legend Member
Gold Member
Apr 11, 2005
9,373
17
And for those of you travelling alone - wear PC clothing, carry PC Bags, etc - make yourself noticeable to other PC consultants...it'll make it easier in the airport to find safe friendly people to share a cab with.
 

Harrle

Member
Jul 18, 2005
297
0
mrssyvo said:
I live in Lombard- do they have shuttle buses every day from HO? My entire cluster is staying with me (They are from Indy) and we will be commuting every morning. It woudl be great if we could shuttle from HO- how do I find the schedule?

Sorry - I meant I had taken the Metra in Monday AM and then I took a taxi to my hotel (Hyatt that year). This year I am still not sure what my transportation will be but tentatively I 'think' I am going to take the Metra in and either walk or take a Taxi to the hotel I will be staying at (Travelodge). I think I figured out that the Travelodge is about 11 blocks from Union Station and then from the Travelodge to one of the Hilton (conference) hotels is about a block and a half. You can catch the bus to the McCormick Center at any of the conference hotels even if you are not staying in one of the hotels - as long as you have your name badge that is provided in you check-in packet. So if you live or are staying DT Chicago this is great! All of the HO tours leave from cCormick Center.

It would be nice if they had a shuttle from HO, but this year it sounds like there will be major construction and the bus ride will be double the time - that was why opted not to take a HO tour, I can find something better to do with 2-3 extra hours of my time! I have gone on the HO tour every year (4) that I have been there.

Leea:cool:
 
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Harrle

Member
Jul 18, 2005
297
0
Surprise Packs

I just came across my receipt from last years 'surprise packs', they were...

$15, $20, or $40 and you could pay by cash, check, PC CC & PC Debit Card.

"All sales Final. Sold "as is." No resale, refunds, warranties, exchanges and/or replacements"


Once everyone opened their boxes there was A LOT of trading going on! I know I got some really cool pizza cookbooks (kind of like the classics and S/B size), an old crock with no glazing, a battery operated sifter and a few other items. They were fun to open - it was like Christmas!!
 

dannyzmom

Legend Member
Gold Member
Apr 11, 2005
9,373
17
I am determined NOT to spend $$ on Sprprise Boxes this year but I KNOW I will - LOL -- It's just too much fun not to.
I got a lot of the things Anne mentioned above...but I also met some great people and made some nice friends on the "trading floor." One gal i was hanging around with at the trading tables...I ran into her on the incentive cruise in paril - it was so cool to see her again!
 
Feb 22, 2005
207
0
Did someone say that the orange line does go downtown? I am traveling alone this year and have never taken the train before so I have no idea where to get off or if I will need to switch trains. I am staying at the Sheraton. Thanks for any info you can give.
 
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