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Conference Travel Tips From the Springy Crew

Library conferences bring folks together for a few days packed with books, ideas, resources, and some of the best people in the world - librarians! The Springy team collectively has quite a few years of travel experience under our belts, so we’ve compiled this list of conference and travel tips for you. Whether you're a seasoned conference-goer or a relative travel newbie, we hope some of these tips will help you have the best conference experience ever.

If you're heading to the Public Library Association Conference in Columbus, OH next week, be sure to swing by Springshare's Booth #501 to share your favorite travel tips - and grab some swag to take home!

1. Stay Hydrated and Sated, Reminds Springy Jen

There's always a lot going on during a conference, so it's extra important to carve out time to eat. If you have a busy day without many breaks, be sure to pack your favorite granola bars and refill your reusable water bottle every chance you get. When you've got a bit more downtime, that's the perfect opportunity to meet up with a library buddy for lunch!

2. Springy April Says Update Your Availability in LibCal!

Be sure to check, double check, and triple check your Appointments availability in LibCal so folks don't try to book an appointment with you while you're hunting down the best booths for freebies. We've been told our stickers and buttons are some of the best at several conferences, just sayin'.

What's the easiest way to set yourself as unbookable during your conference travel dates? Set up two-way syncing with your calendaring tool, then add those dates as 'Out of Office' to your personal calendar. The two-way sync with LibCal will pick up those 'Out of Office' calendar dates and block off your availability so you can't be booked for a LibCal appointment.


3. Use Your Camera, Shares Springy Corinne

Your phone camera is one of your handiest tools... Not just to document your fantastic conference adventures, but also as a portable memory. Some suggestions:

  • Keep track of coming-soon books when you can't fit even one more ARC into your suitcase.
  • Take photos of any vendors you want to follow up with after the conference.
  • Snap a pic of your parking space at the airport so you can easily find your car after your flight home.

Your post-conference self with thank you!

4. Track Your Expenses Using LibWizard, Advises Springy Lilly

Set up a LibWizard form to track conference expenses.

  • Tailor the fields, order, and layout to your reimbursement process.
  • Add Date Input fields to easily select the conference start and end dates.
  • Use the File Upload field to attach a single file - a great way to submit a receipt.

5. Venture Beyond the Convention Center, Recommends Springy Talia

Heading to Columbus, Ohio for PLA next week? Fuel up for a day of conference hubbub by hitting up a local coffee shop in the morning, or carve out some time after the day's activities to visit a bookstore, try out a new restaurant, and more. Here are some ideas from Experience Columbus!

6. Network, Network, Network! Reminds Springy Zin

Update your profiles in LibGuides and LibCal, 'cause your new friends will want to take a look.


Set your profile image, add contact information and social media links, and more. Follow these steps to set up your LibGuides profile page from within LibApps: Customize your public profile.


Showcase what events you have coming up at your library. Here's how: Customize your LibCal account profile.

7. Stay Warm and Librarian Stylish, Says Springy KJ

Always bring a cardigan for those hotel ballrooms, and for your library street cred. You don't want to be shivering during a session!

Bonus tip: Fun, bookish accessories are a surefire way to strike up a conversation with fellow attendees.

8. Springy Kirsten Says Keep Your Colleagues in the Loop

Live blog the event on a LibGuides Blog for your colleagues who can’t make it.

  • With LibGuides CMS - Add a Blog page to a guide in your staff intranet Group. Any blog posts will be staff-only, visible to those who are signed into your LibGuides system and have access to your intranet. You can jot down notes and embed photos and links, and your colleagues can add comments.
  • Coming Soon: LibGuides Blogs Refresh - In April, we're debuting a refreshed Blogs UI with new standalone blogs! With this new functionality, you can set up an internal blog with its own friendly URL. Stay tuned for this update and attend our live training session on April 30 to get to know all the new Blogs features!

9. Not All Good Sessions Are on the Conference Calendar, Says Springy Cate

Be sure to check in with your favorite vendors and see if they’re offering any type of training session or programs at their booth. Oftentimes they partner with other libraries to deliver amazing guest presentations right in the exhibit hall.

In fact, Springshare has FOUR fabulous librarian guest flash presentations lined up, live in person at Booth #501 and streaming on our Facebook page, as well as Springy experts showcasing some of the latest features for your Springy Tools.

We hope to see you in Columbus! Springshare's Booth #501 will be your spot for sweet swag, flash presentations, and Springy fun. Can't join us in person? Follow along on Facebook and keep an eye on our Conference calendar to see where we'll be next.

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