Thank you for your interest in attending the 2010 *FIRST *Championship (CMP) event! We understand there are some questions with regard to how the waitlist works, and we are writing with the following information we hope you find helpful.
We will not start moving teams off the waitlist until after the start of the Regional Events; we estimate this to be around the 2nd or 3rd week;
CMP spot availability will be based on how many qualifying teams choose to attend or decline attending the event (in some cases qualifying teams will have already registered during the open registration period thus making the spot available to waitlisted teams) Important: Teams that decline a qualifying spot may not offer the spot to another team – *FIRST *makes all offers directly;
Teams are normally moved in on a first come first served basis (i.e., by date on waitlist);
We do not publish the waitlist. As with the regionals, FIRST does not want teams making travel arrangements based on their position on the list. There are no guarantees even the first team on the list will get a spot. We understand teams have concerns about making travel/hotel arrangements, however, waitlisted teams should plan on making their arrangements only at the time they are offered a spot by FIRST. Qualifying teams face like time-frame conditions for making arrangements;
If you send or have sent a payment for us to hold for you, we will do so. Important: Please note this does not guarantee your team a spot, nor give your team any preference for being moved off the waitlist. In the event your team is offered a spot and you accept, we will then apply the monies to your account for the event.
Championship waitlist decisions are made at headquarters. Questions should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org, Subject Line: Championship waitlist question.
I agree with you that we’d probably all much prefer that FIRST immediately pull from the waitlist to fill open slots as they come available, not do it in bulk a couple of weeks before Atlanta.
7 teams that signed up for one of the open berths at Championships have already dropped out.
Our place on the waitlist in the long run probably won’t matter to us.
Team and family money is tight, so we can’t make travel reservations without a guaranteed spot in any case.
A last minute travel scramble a couple of weeks before the Championship is expensive at premium rates and puts a lot of stress on the folks behind the scenes that I’ll avoid. I’d rather have the teachers/mentors/parents than the Championship trip.
[strike]I think you are to the first point, which only applies, as with much of this email, to the championship waitlist. If not than I do not see why you think a team will not be moved up innediately.[/strike]
FIRST does not want teams making travel arrangements based on their position on the list.
Also they are not even posting the teams on the waitlist.
This isnt about whether Id book the team’s trip early or not with payment.
As a lead coordinator for years, I am able to reserve airline seats 30+ at a time without actually putting a down payment, until very late.
This helps me lock in cheaper rates and guarantees me flights that all of us can get on. We dont allow student travel by themselves at various times, just so that we can get better rates/available seats.
If I’m #100 on the waitlist, I wouldnt sweat it. But if I was #5, I’d certainly think that I have a good chance on getting in via at-large and can spend time early enough planning.
Try booking 30+ people 2 weeks before you have to go from Hawaii to the East Coast. My airfare costs alone for the team to Atlanta has never been under $20,000+ ever/year. Driving is one thing, but flying is a whole different animal 4-5000 miles away.
987 is on the waitlist and somewhat anxious about the later notification from FIRST. It has been many years since we were faced with late season reservations, etc. Does anyone know if Steel Meetings holds back rooms in decent hotels like the Marriott Marquis for waitlisters and later season qualifiers? Or are some of us looking at smaller chain, distant hotels if we don’t know our status until the second or third week of March?
With Steel Meetings it’s first-come/first-served.
They’ll probably have capacity remaining in March, just at more distant hotels.
Our airline costs are much less than yours Glenn, maybe on the order of $9,000 if we went in 2010. We can’t hold airline seats indefinitely though and at the last minute it’s very hard to get flights that can accommodate all the students and chaperones in one large group. We can’t break up into smaller groups either.
The good news is that, if the rules don’t change again, we can register for Championships earlier next year. Our seniors are bummed, though I’m sure they aren’t the only team feeling that way…
That works for my family, but doesn’t fly with the school board when we have students to supervise.
We’ve taken hotels further away just to reassure the school board everyone will be adequately supervised. We typically travel with four chaperones, two female & two male. We can break into two groups, male/female, but not smaller.
Atlanta is nice in that they do have a lot of hotel space within walking distance of the Dome.
First off, I do appreciate FIRST sharing this information and hope they continue to become more transparent.
However, I noticed the same thing that Mark did and think it’s ridiculous. During initial registration FIRST allowed 175 teams to sign up for the Championship. Now 7 teams have dropped out, and that number is now 168. According to the email, they are going to wait until the middle of March to fill these spots with the waitlisted teams. Why are they waiting this long? If FIRST wants to save teams money they should tell the next team on the waitlist that they are into an event as soon as possible. Assuming these 7 teams have 30 people each and booking travel mid December vs. mid March saves each person $50 in travel, which equates to over $10,000 in unnecessary expense.
I have a feeling that more teams will drop especially as the payment deadline nears and passes. Even if they waited until the end of January to replace the drop outs it would leave those teams over 2 months to book travel.
Cool, because sometimes Steel will do that even if you tell them otherwise :rolleyes:
I personally think it would be better to release waitlist spots as they open, but perhaps they have reasons to wait (i.e. waitlist being sorted by placement at regional events rather than sign up order? some function of the new game? I dunno). Perhaps the new transparency is making their needed-to-be-hidden secrets more cloaked.
The Championship payment is due Jan 15. On Jan 18 they should start waitlisting teams that have not paid, and start inviting teams from the current waitlist. The question becomes, what rank in the waitlist do the previously-registered-but-unpaid teams get? I.e. when do they get another chance?
I think Gary has found the balance between giving everyone a fair shot at registering (and paying later without being bumped) and not making the waitlisted teams wait until mid-March to finally be notified they can attend champs.
To be honest I’m not at all happy about waiting until the last minute to make airline/hotel reservations and I have the same concerns that many other mentors have: how do I make sure I can effectively manage all the students at the event? We, too, need to have our students grouped together in the hotel and do not have the ability to fly on more than just a couple flights due to school district policy.
I don’t mean to cast stones but is FIRST aware of the many school district policies and procedures that are in place regarding travel? I know they can’t satisfy everyone but I’m fairly confident there are some common themes among all of them that should be considered.
The suspicious side of me suspects they may do this because they don’t intend for the waitlist to operate in a linear fashion. If that’s the case, they get to wait and pick the teams they want to move off the waitlist instead of taking whoever has been waiting the longest, the minute a spot opens up.
I can’t think of any other reason not to immediately bump teams to the confirmed list.