Saturday, 4 January 2014

Mobile World Congress 2014 - Planning to Eat...

Happy New Year everyone! That must mean that the entire mobile industry has to start going into overdrive for Mobile World Congress in February in Barcelona. Over at linkedin, there is a pretty useful thread for discussing what kind of tips and suggestions you'd give first time attendees to MWC.

Parties aside, my best personal advice for Mobile World Congress is actually about eating. Having been to Barcelona for every MWC since it moved there, I've worked out what is best for me and really what is not good at all for me. I've described it to some people as doing a year's worth of meetings in one week. It is pretty intense - you definitely work hard and play hard. In my experience, you walk about a million miles (maybe just slightly less), drink far too much alcohol and go to bed way too late for a couple of hours sleep before doing it all again the next day, all without eating much more than a couple of bites of tapas and maybe a Jamon baguette. The biggest thing that has at least helped me sleep better and feel better is to address the food problem head-on.

Not sure how healthy this sandwich is Mr. Messi...

Here's my addition to to the thread:

One thing that I'd add, make sure you eat properly and heathily. It is a crazy week of early mornings, late nights and lots of walking. Also, if you're like most of the attendees and therefore not 'entirely' tee-total, you may need to soak up some of that booze ;-) 

It can be difficult to get food during a really hectic week and what food is on-site is usually limited. Mostly jamon / spanish tortilla baguettes, crisps and maybe some fairly rank salads (unless you can eat in the Gold pass areas). The queues at lunchtimes are mental, so if you are going to grab something, try and get it early on and stick it in your bag for later if you can. 

Don't expect to be eating well at any of the parties unless you can get by on a couple of cocktail snacks and a bit of Paella. 

As someone who needs food to keep me going, I generally try to eat as follows each day: 

* a healthy, large breakfast with some fruit 
* get some early coffee on-site 
* make time for lunch - I now resist the temptation to skip it and fill it with a meeting 
* eat something substantial if I can early on in the evening that isn't just tapas at a party 

Hope this helps!

 I'd be interested in any other thoughts people have on how to eat properly at MWC. Anyway, with that slight detour I have to get back to judging entries for the GMAs and preparing our own Copper Horse trip out there!

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