Con-goers, we all know that conventions for our respective fandoms are definitely not inexpensive. We touched on this a while ago, when we brought you the question about autographs vs. photos when meeting celebrities. With all of the VIP and photo op packages out there, it feels like it’s getting harder and harder to manage our finances for con season. Every time we look at our convention calendar, our wallets weep a bit more.
That being said, it’s interesting when a new convention – in this case HasCon – debuts their event with ticket prices that would shock even the most seasoned convention attendee. That’s right, dear readers, Hasbro, the long-running toy company, is hosting their first ever convention in Providence, RI from September 8th – 10th, and adult general admission tickets are currently set at $60 USD for a single day ticket, and a whopping $165 USD for a 3-day pass. Topping that, the convention is also offering three versions of VIP passes (a general one, a ‘Magic: The Gathering’ one, and a ‘Dungeons & Dragons’ one), all being called “Super Fan” tickets, for which they are currently asking $600 USD each, plus RI sales tax, which is at 7%. Rhode Island is tied with Indiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee for the second-highest sales tax in the country at 7% (California’s is the highest at 7.25%)! Don’t believe us? Check the convention’s tickets page for details.
The convention, announced last year by Hasbro, is set to have several celebrity meet & greets. Stan Lee, Peter Cullen (the original voice of Optimus Prime), Frank Welker (the original voice of Megatron), Andrea Libman (the voice of Pinkie Pie & Fluttershy from My Little Pony), as well as several other voice actors and creators will be in attendance. HasCon will also feature both ‘Magic: The Gathering’ and ‘Dungeons & Dragons’ play events, as well as multiple panels on all three days.
That’s all well and good, and we applaud Hasbro for putting together such a cool lineup. However, they may want to take into consideration that a lot of their fanbase is made up of families with younger children. Parents work incredibly hard to provide for their kids, and it’s a bit of a stretch to assume that these families will be willing to shell out such large amounts of their hard-earned money, just to ensure that they and their kids can attend the first year of this convention. Those of us who’ve been con-goers for a while, know that the first iteration of any convention is usually a test run, and ends up having several issues which need to be worked out in subsequent years. So, I ask you: is it really worth that much money in order to attend something like this, when it’s almost guaranteed to have some bugs that need fixing?
I don’t know about you, dear readers, but I think that Hasbro (for being such a wealthy company) should re-think their price points for this one. Maybe if they’re able to pull this event off without a hitch, then they can work on raising prices for next year. What do you all think? Let us know your thoughts on these ticket prices in the comments below!