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Student Affairs Committee--

Affording Philadelphia
during the 2000 SAA Annual Meeting

Caryn M. Berg

For those who attended the SAA Annual Meeting in Chicago, you already know that it was one of the largest meetings ever. This means that the Annual Meeting in Philadelphia (April 5­9, 2000) is sure to be a huge success! For students, this means that there will be more archaeologists to meet, more research presented, and more opportunities for networking! As students, we all know that attending these meetings is important for integrating ourselves into our chosen profession. Unfortunately, however, it often seems financially difficult to attend these meetings and for many, Philadelphia seems so far away. Here are some ideas for making the meetings in Philadelphia a little more affordable!

General Tips

In the November 1998 Bulletin, Chad Gifford provided some general tips that will help you save money while at the meetings:

Planning Ahead for Philadelphia

If you want to attend the meeting in Philadelphia, now is the time to start planning in order to save on costs! You may be saying to yourself, "It is only November; I have plenty of time." You have plenty of time to write your paper (if you plan to present) and to pack, but time flies when you are trying to find a roommate, sign up to volunteer, obtain those low transportation rates, and save the money to afford it all!

The best way to save on costs in terms of getting to and staying in Philadelphia are to reserve your room now! There are two places with great ratesthe Holiday Inn Express Midtown

and Philadelphia Marriott. Both hotels allow up to four people in the rooms, so start looking for roommates now! The Holiday Inn offers a free continental breakfast daily (this helps reduce your dining costs). The deadline for making student rate reservations at the Holiday Inn is March 10, 2000. For reservations at the SAA regular rate at the Philadelphia Marriott, the deadline is March 12, 2000. Don't miss those deadlines!

If you don't live near an Amtrak station or if you are not close to an airport with a USAirways terminal (the official airline for the meeting), you need to look for alternative transportation. You can contact a travel agent for this if you don't want the hasslemany travel agents near campuses are willing to put together great deals. You also can look for discount fares at This site is a great resource for affordable travel if you are unable to use the SAA discounts available to you.

Affording Philadelphia

Philadelphia is like most big cities -- there are dozens of sites to visit and hundreds of places in which to drink and dine. Like any big city, the costs of sightseeing and dining have a broad range in Philadelphia, although they can kill your budget if you are not careful! There is an incredible Web site available at to help in planning your budget for Philadelphia. This Web site contains everything you need to know and more. You will find restaurant lists in every price range and of every variety, ranging from delis that serve Philly cheesesteaks to Thai restaurants. You will find information about nightclubs ranging from jazz to rock, and there also is a calendar of events and information about tours, restaurants, and sports. If you decide to take a trip outside of Philadelphia before or after the meeting, you will find extensive information about hotels and lodging in the vicinity. It is a great site for planning an April trip to Philadelphia! If you want even more information about what to expect on a budget in Philadelphia, check out This is the site for the Philadelphia Convention and Visitor's Bureau and is another great resource for city information (and for maps if you are driving to Philly).

You can afford to attend this Annual Meeting if you start planning for it early. If you start looking for roommates, take the time to browse the Philadelphia Website, create a budget, and start savingthe cost of the meeting will seem less ominous. You are still going to spend some money but it is worth every penny in the long run!

As an aside, the Student Affairs Committee has featured several articles in past issues of the Bulletin relating to having a successful meeting experience. If you decide to go, be sure to sign on to SAAWeb ( and peruse the Bulletin archives.

I hope to see you in Philadelphia! ·

Caryn M. Berg, a doctoral candidate at the University of Colorado at Boulder, is the chair of the Student Paper Awards Committee.

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