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How Fandom Can Drive You To the Poor House

It’s not only the time invested in watching the shows/movies, but also the costs associated with buying T-shirts, pins, autographs or other memorabilia.

However, fans can run into some unexpectedly price tags when it comes to conventions like Comic-Con. It demonstrates the word “fan” is just shorthand for fanatic. Only a fanatic would put up with some of the price gouging that goes on.

Fandom … for a Price

Let’s start with the hotel costs. Hotels in San Diego are already pricey, even in the best of times. But when Comic-Con comes to town, prices don’t just skyrocket. They warp into outer space.

Hotels 25 to 30 minutes away from the convention will double or even triple their regular rates. A convention goer could easily spend $2,000 for a 5-night stay. And good luck even finding hotel rooms, even with blocks of rooms set aside for Comic-Con.

Next comes the cost of food. With a captive audience in the San Diego Convention Center, a bottle of water that sells for a dollar outside goes for $3.50 inside.

RELATED: Comic-Con Exclusives: Deals or Duds?

A one-dollar bottle of soda? That will set you back $4 at the Convention Center concessions. Small, pre-made sandwiches with minimal meat fillings are $8.75. Nachos or hot dogs are relative bargains at $5 each, but as is the case with sandwiches, you have to spend an extra $2 to get chips.

So, the classic sandwich, chips and soda lunch runs $14.75. That doesn’t seem so bad until you bite into your sandwich and discover there’s only one slice of meat.

Open Your Wallets

Then there’s the real meat of true fandom: buying things that remind you of your favorite show, movie or star. You can buy a ticket so you’ll have a place in line to get an autograph, which will also cost you. You can buy stuffed animals, T-shirts or action figures. There’s comic books, paintings, or prints of your star/movie/show.

Wandering the Exhibit Hall is dangerous to your wallet or purse. They’re selling things you didn’t even know you wanted but now can’t live without.

Want a hand like the Hulk? Someone is selling an expensive latex reproduction of it. How about a Millenium Falcon that floats and maneuvers because it’s a quad-copter? Yes, you can get that, too.

An original oil painting by artist Frank Franzetta? It’ll run you $900,000.00.

If you can imagine it or desire it, someone is selling it to Fandom Nation. All for an outrageous price of course. Because that’s what the market will bear.

comic-con-fandom-poor-house-

Finally, there’s the wasted time standing in line. And at Comic-Con, stand in line you will (which sounds vaguely like a Yoda quote).

You’ll stand in line to get in, ride an escalator and use a bathroom. You’ll stand in long lines to see panels, sometimes having to arrive a panel or two ahead of the panel you really want to see.

You’ll stand in line in the Exhibit Hall, just to get into a booth or to get an autograph. You’ll even stand in line just to pick up a free promotional comic book that’ll get thrown away a day or so later.
Even with the sky high cost of fandom, the craziest thing is that people will do it all over again

Willingly.


Bones is a special HiT correspondent at the 2016 Comic-Con in San Diego.

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