In the ultimate trick or treat, CCI is springing Returning Registration on us on Saturday, 28 October. Happy Halloween!
Why is it so early? Because CCI wants us to celebrate the season of loss and death and the beyond in a very visceral way, I guess. No haunted house will scare the crap out of you quite like those critical minutes of an SDCC badge sale, when everyone else is getting a Preview Night badge and you're not. But really, I view this as good news - those attendees who get badges will have more time to settle their airfare and hotel details, where last year's late sale was a bit of a nail-biter in that regard.
And if you don't get lucky in Ret Reg, you have all winter (probably) to come to terms with the possibility of missing San Diego Comic-Con. The 2017 sales were so close together that losing out in both was like a kick in the teeth. You'll also have a more realistic sense of whether or not you should invest in a back-up Con next year. (The answer to that is YES if you don't score in Ret Reg, because Open Reg gets worse every year.)
So get your buying group together and your finances in order. If you just blew all your cash at NYCC, if you just blew even more on the ECCC badge sale, your wallet may feel the pinch - but that's only if you get lucky, so the additional spending shouldn't be that painful. Nothing feels as good as locking down a Preview Night or 4-day badge before the holidays.
The only downside is letting any bad badge sale luck ruin your Halloween parties that night - so try to remember this is just round 1. Also remember that there are other Cons, remember all the grumpy hours you spent in line this summer, and any other mind-tricks you need to convince yourself that Oct. 28 isn't really that important. Though of course it is.
Personally I'm happy about this, as I'm going to be out of the country in early November and was dreading the lack of control. Hopefully you can see the upside in an early Returning Registration too. (Though this isn't the earliest by any means, as you old-timers know.)
I'll post more about buying groups and Ret Reg rules later - though by now, you know the deal. Good luck, stay confident and don't lose your Samhain / Dia De Los Muertos / Hallow's Eve spirit. No matter what happens a week from Saturday, you'll find a way to have a beautiful Comic-Con next year.