What to Expect When You Attend Your First Planner Conference
We’re a month out from the beginning of our tour de PlannerCon Parties. Oh, Hello’s going to be hitting the road to go to every single one of the five different conferences from Salt Lake City to Honolulu. My charismatic husband Alex has been asked to be the MC at all of the events so we’re packing up our bags, pouring a ton of extra cat food, and getting seriously excited.
I often get asked what it’s like to attend a planner conference. Now they’re all different in so many wonderful ways, but here’s what you can usually expect.
There won’t be that much time to plan, unless there’s a designated planning time. More often than not, conferences are jam packed with speakers, workshops, and shopping time. Plus you’ll likely make some new friends and choose to go out for drinks rather than plan. So definitely pack light in the planning department.
You’ll leave with a ton of goodies generously donated by sponsors and small shops. Swag amounts will vary from conference to conference, but it’s likely fellow attendees will bring things to give out as well.
Everyone is nervous, but open to making friends. Tons of people go to these events alone. Trust that everyone is there because they share the same passion as you, so it’s super easy to strike up a conversation. Ask what planner they use!
The workshops are amazing and always taught by experienced, yet relate-able people. Sometimes you’ll get to choose which workshops to attend, other times there’s a set schedule for everyone.
People like to have others sign their planners. I still am shocked and flattered when someone asks me to sign their planner. It can happen to anyone! So feel free to ask a new friend to sign your planner or a special page in your traveler’s notebook. It’ll be like a yearbook page from the event!
Planner conferences are never the same. They can be small, intimate things or massive party things. Definitely do your research before selecting one to attend to make sure it’s your style and speed. 
If you’ve been to planner conferences before, leave your advice and tips in the comments!