IETF meeting attendees' Frequently Asked (travel) Questions
The information below is for an old version of the document.
This is an older version of an Internet-Draft that was ultimately published as RFC 6640.
|Last updated||2012-03-06 (Latest revision 2012-02-23)|
|RFC stream||Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)|
|IESG||IESG state||Waiting for AD Go-Ahead|
|Responsible AD||Russ Housley|
|Send notices email@example.com|
Internet Engineering Task Force W. George Internet-Draft Time Warner Cable Intended status: Informational February 23, 2012 Expires: August 26, 2012 IETF meeting attendees' Frequently Asked (travel) Questions draft-george-travel-faq-04 Abstract This document attempts to provide a list of the common Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) that IETF meeting attendees often ask regarding travel logistics and local information. It is intended to assist those who are willing to provide local information, so that if they wish to pre-populate answers to some or all of these questions either in the IETF Wiki or a meeting-specific site, they have a reasonably complete list of ideas to draw from. It is not meant as a list of required information that the host or secretariat needs to provide, merely as a guideline. Status of this Memo This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79. Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). Note that other groups may also distribute working documents as Internet-Drafts. The list of current Internet- Drafts is at http://datatracker.ietf.org/drafts/current/. Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any time. It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference material or to cite them other than as "work in progress." This Internet-Draft will expire on August 26, 2012. Copyright Notice Copyright (c) 2012 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the document authors. All rights reserved. This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal Provisions Relating to IETF Documents (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of publication of this document. Please review these documents carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 1] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 to this document. Code Components extracted from this document must include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as described in the Simplified BSD License. Table of Contents 1. Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 2. Why is this document necessary? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 3. Helpful information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 3.1. Travel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 3.1.1. Transit between the airport and primary hotels . . . . 5 126.96.36.199. Taxi information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 188.8.131.52. Mass Transit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 3.1.2. Getting around near the conference venue . . . . . . . 7 3.2. Food . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 3.2.1. Restaurants . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 3.2.2. Other Food items . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 3.3. Regional/International considerations . . . . . . . . . . 8 3.3.1. Health and Safety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 184.108.40.206. Water availability . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 3.3.2. Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 3.4. Communications and electronics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 3.5. Weather . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 3.6. Fitness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 3.7. Tourism and Souvenirs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 4. Acknowledgements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 5. IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 6. Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 7. Informative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Author's Address . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 2] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 1. Introduction IETF attendees come from all over the world. The typical IETF meeting has representatives from in excess of 50 countries. It is quite likely that a large portion of the participants in any given IETF are newcomers to the specific location where it is being held, or even the country or region itself. As a result, they are going to have questions regarding their own personal travel needs and logistics that may only be answerable by someone who has either been to the area before, someone who lives there, and/or someone who speaks the local language. The IETF, its secretariat, and any local host organizations responsible for the logistics of making IETF meetings happen are not travel agencies, but they often can and do assist with identifying and hosting the common information that most attendees wish to have while they are planning their trip. This document attempts to cover the most commonly asked questions and categories for information. This document is not intended to provide answers to these questions for every possible location in which IETF meetings may be held. Rather, it is intended to provide a set of FAQs for use by the hosts and others who have experience with the area where the event is being held, so that the questions and answers can be handled more efficiently than waiting until someone sends an email to the meeting attendees email list in the days leading up to the meeting. 2. Why is this document necessary? In reading this document, one may ask, "Isn't that why search engines and travel sites exist?" And the answer is that yes, we can sometimes find what we're looking for with search engines, but that results in hundreds of people spending their time searching, which is not very efficient. In addition, despite the widely held belief that if it is published on the Internet, it must be true, sometimes the information that is available is either inaccurate, incomplete, or out of date, so it may be less reliable than firsthand info from someone who has been there. Also, no matter how much online translation has improved, some of the most useful local travel information sites may be difficult for non-native speakers to navigate and find information, because navigation buttons, graphics, and other active content are typically not machine-translatable, and non-native speakers may not realize when machine translation is inaccurate in a critical way. Lastly, while the companies which serve as hosts for IETF meetings often have participants attending IETF, the folks who are responsible for handling the details of hosting an IETF may not be regular attendees. Therefore, this document, especially section 3, is intended to be something that can George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 3] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 be provided to host event organizers that may not have much familiarity with the IETF, so that they have a better sense of the information that attendees will find helpful. The format of this document was chosen so that it captures the Frequently Asked Questions, but usually not their answers. This is because IETF RFCs are typically static and infrequently updated, which does not make them a particularly suitable format to contain location-specific information. The questions found in this document are a result of informal review of multiple past meeting attendees mailing lists and the feedback of many individuals, and are believed to be reasonably static from one meeting to the next. This document is not necessarily all-inclusive, but should serve as a reasonable baseline such that a static format like an RFC is appropriate. It is likely that the RFC will need to be revised periodically - a clue that this is necessary will be when, over the course of multiple meetings, multiple additional questions that are not covered by this document surface on the attendees list and start becoming frequently asked questions. The answers to this document's questions are expected to be stored in a location which is more easily updated by multiple parties, so that site-specific information can be refined and updated as often as necessary, thereby creating a living document. There are several options as to where to store the location-specific living document. For some past IETF meetings, the hosting organization or an individual has set up a special website, e.g. ietf75.se [STOCKHOLM], ietf71.comcast.net [PHILLY], or hiroshima-info.info [HIROSHIMA], etc. This has been a source of much additional information about the location, and is always quite helpful. If the host decides to set up a site like this, the hope is that this document will provide guidance as to the sorts of information with which to populate such a site. However, it is by no means a requirement that the host set up an external website. Further, not every IETF meeting has a local host, or even a host at all. In these cases, the need for the same set of information is not lessened, but the IETF will be more reliant on the willingness of those with experience in the area where the meeting will be held to share the benefit of that experience with others. The IETF has provided a hosted Wiki [WIKI] which can simply be populated with the same sorts of information. This has the added benefit of having a single location where additional information can be provided by experienced travelers, locals, and host representatives alike, and is therefore not completely reliant on the host. In the case where the IETF-hosted Wiki is to be used, this document may serve as a framework of categories that could be pre- built when the site-specific page is set up, so that others can begin populating the information. George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 4] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 3. Helpful information There are a number of general categories of information listed below. Some of it, such as sections 3.1 and 3.3, is necessary for travel, the rest can be considered nice-to-have. All of it has come from actual frequently asked questions from the attendees mailing lists. Much of the needed information may already be available in another form online. There is no need to reproduce information that can be found on external websites, so simply providing pointers to information already available in other locations is quite appropriate. However, it is very helpful if some validation and vetting of the provided information is performed in order to avoid outdated or inaccurate information. Additionally, because this is a static and location-agnostic document, it's quite likely that some questions are either irrelevant or confusing for some locations. Therefore, "not really relevant here" and "we don't know" may be valid answers to some of these questions. In those cases, it's better to say this explicitly than to simply omit the section, as this will confirm that the information was not simply omitted. The main thing to remember when providing information in these categories is that those traveling to the event have not been there before, and so one should not assume a high level of background knowledge about the area, its customs, etc. 3.1. Travel o Recommended airport(s) for domestic and international connections - include the appropriate IATA Airport code(s) whenever possible to avoid confusion. o Non-flight options to get to the city where the meeting is being held (e.g. if there are convenient rail travel options) 3.1.1. Transit between the airport and primary hotels Information in this section is especially critical if the airport is significantly distant from the venue or use of a taxi is otherwise impractical or not recommended (e.g. if attendees must use a train or long-distance bus to get to the venue locale from the airport) o Estimated travel time - this is also important for return travel from the venue to the airport. It is worth noting any recommendations about leaving extra time if airport security and check-in is always busy or there will be significant differences in travel time due to rush hour traffic George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 5] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 o Shuttles (if applicable) o Arranging transit directly with the hotel (if applicable) - hotels sometimes provide car service or are willing to pay taxi bills upon your arrival so that the charges can be added to the hotel bill instead of requiring local currency. It is helpful to know in advance if this is common or uncommon in the local area. 220.127.116.11. Taxi information o Credit cards accepted (yes/no and which ones, if yes) o Foreign currency accepted? o Estimated costs for Taxis, as well as any rules/recommendations about metered fares vs. fixed-rate or prenegotiated fares o Description of "official" taxis if appropriate o Links to websites or phone numbers for remote/pre-booking Taxis o How to find the taxi stand at the airport/train station o Printable local-language address card to show taxi driver in case of language barrier o Ride sharing - the IETF Wiki usually has a section where attendees can post arrival times and work out Taxi sharing 18.104.22.168. Mass Transit Navigating an unfamiliar mass transit system can be challenging. Things that seem obvious to the locals may not be as obvious to out- of-town travelers. o English map o How and where to purchase farecards/tokens o How to use tickets/tokens (where to insert them, get them stamped, how to transfer, etc) o How trains/buses are labeled and how to identify the destination of a particular train/bus o The general frequency of service, and in particular whether one should just go to the station or should consult a schedule first George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 6] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 o Which transit system to use for which destination (when there are multiple transit systems in the area) o Nearby stations and how to identify a station entrance (common logo, color, etc) 3.1.2. Getting around near the conference venue The same info relevant for airport transit will likely be relevant here, including taxi and mass transit information. If possible, walking directions between the conference venue and the hotel(s) should be provided if the venue is not co-located with the hotel. Additionally, It is helpful to note if having a vehicle available (rental or personal car) is a help or a hindrance in getting around in the local area. For example, it may not be recommended to try to drive in the area near the conference venue due to: o Parking availability and costs o Congestion charges and other restrictions on when and where one can drive o Traffic 3.2. Food The nature of IETF's schedule means that food and drink provide both a welcome break as well as a venue to continue discussions with colleagues, either related to IETF work, other shop talk, or anything *but* shop talk. During IETF's lunch break, approximately 1000 people are simultaneously looking for reasonably priced lunch options, with timeframes ranging from "grab and go" for a working lunch to 75 minutes for a sit-down meal. When meetings have concluded for the day, the wide variety of attendees means that people are looking for all types of food, all price ranges, and atmosphere ranging from someplace suitable for an in-depth conversation to a table at the bar. The more information that is available about the food and drink options nearby, the better. This information is especially helpful during the first few days of the conference, because the amount of folks looking for assistance from the hotel concierge or other information desk staff at one time tends to overwhelm the personnel available. 3.2.1. Restaurants It's generally helpful to note whether restaurants require/recommend reservations, if they have busy/rush times that should be avoided or George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 7] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 planned for, etc. It's helpful for Restaurants to be categorized by: o Price o Proximity to venue - It's useful to highlight quick options for lunch breaks. o Type of cuisine - This is a great place to highlight local specialties and favorites. o Special dietary needs * Vegan/Vegetarian * Halal/Kosheroi * It's also extremely helpful to discuss methods for communicating these needs to restaurant staff when ordering * A more in-depth discussion of dietary concerns can be found in [I-D.barnes-healthy-food] 3.2.2. Other Food items o Local grocery/convenience stores - for attendees who cannot find restaurant options which meet their dietary needs o Coffee shops and Tea Houses nearby - specifically, where can we find the best espresso/cup of tea? o Bars/pubs nearby o Restaurants/pubs with private rooms or large seating areas for big groups 3.3. Regional/International considerations o Plug type/voltage - this can simply be a reference to electricaloutlet.org [PLUGS] unless there are specific exceptions or details that need to be highlighted o Visa requirements, pointers regarding travel documents - IETF typically provides information about visas via a pointer to an embassy or similar page that has general information about common types of visas, when they are required, waived, etc. It also includes information about how to obtain a letter of invitation George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 8] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 should one be required. It is helpful to provide information that goes beyond that, especially if there are known issues where it may be difficult for entrants from certain countries to get a visa processed in the time between when the meeting is announced and when travel must commence. If there are expedite processes, this is a good place to discuss them. o Languages commonly spoken o National/regional holidays, work stoppages/strikes, or other issues which may impact travel or business hours during the week of IETF 3.3.1. Health and Safety o Phone numbers to access local emergency services (e.g. 911, 999, etc) o Closest health clinic/hospital facilities o Areas of high crime to avoid o Common local scams o Hostile flora and fauna and how to identify/avoid o Local air quality considerations - everyone has different thresholds for "unhealthy" air quality, and especially those with health or respiratory problems may need to be able to locate local air quality monitoring information to determine how best to prepare themselves. o Smoking rules * Are most bars/restaurants smoking or non-smoking? Separate smoking section? * Rules on smoking in public places? * Availability of dedicated smoking/non-smoking rooms in hotels? * Rules on smoking outdoors? 22.214.171.124. Water availability o Is local tap water potable/drinkable (if not, is it truly unsafe because of impurities or contamination or does it simply taste bad by local standards?) George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 9] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 o How does one differentiate between tap water and bottled in a restaurant when ordering? o Are water fountains/bubblers or watter bottle refill taps commonly available in public places? 3.3.2. Money o General credit card acceptance in common locations, including any restrictions (requires a PIN or chip, no AMEX, etc) o ATM locations near the venue, at the airport - note whether these accept foreign cards, which systems they participate in, whether they have an English language option o Tipping customs, particularly for Taxis, restaurants, and hotel staff o Currency conversion rate - a reference to a currency converter site, e.g. Yahoo! [CURRENCY] will suffice unless there are specific conversion details that one believes to be relevant o In establishments where foreign currency is accepted either for purchase or for exchange, note whether this is recommended or not due to favorable or unfavorable exchange rates, etc. o For what types of purchases (if any) bargaining/haggling on the price is expected or customary, and if so, customary methods for successful bargaining 3.4. Communications and electronics o Places to purchase local SIMs, and types of mobile voice/data service supported, (e.g. GSM, LTE, UMTS, CDMA, etc) o Places to get replacement electronics and accessories (e.g. power cords, adaptors, batteries, etc) o Public Wi-Fi access (outside of hotel and venue) including Wi-Fi availability in the recommended airports, mass transit, etc. 3.5. Weather o Link to a site or brief info on temperature and humidity norms for the time of year when the meeting will be held, e.g Weather Underground [WEATHER] George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 10] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 o If this is an area known for extreme weather, note any amenities to make travel easier, such as enclosed walkways or indoor passages between buildings o This also refers to indoor weather: what is the common indoor temperature? 3.6. Fitness o Soccer: If the weather cooperates, it is common for some IETFers to try to hold a "soccer BoF" - a pick-up soccer game sometime during the week of IETF. If you know of a field appropriate for soccer in proximity to the venue, this is useful information to have. o Running/walking paths or routes - some folks prefer this method for exercise over using a treadmill 3.7. Tourism and Souvenirs While this is certainly not necessary information for the primary goal of an IETF attendee, many attendees earmark a day or two on either side of the conference for sightseeing, and this is an opportunity to highlight local attractions. Links to sites containing information about walking tours, local tourist attractions and the like are certainly appreciated. Additionally, many attendees choose to purchase souvenirs as gifts or for personal use. In addition to the standard "tourist-trap" items such as t-shirts and knick-knacks, many attendees are looking for items that are locally crafted, local specialties, or otherwise significant to the local area and culture. This is another area where the local area can be highlighted in the information provided to attendees. 4. Acknowledgements Thanks to the following folks (and probably others the author has unintentionally forgotten) for their valuable feedback. Dave Crocker, Simon Perreault, Joe Touch, Lee Howard, Jonathan Lennox, Tony Hansen, Vishnu Ram, Paul Kyzivat, Karen Seo, Randy Bush, Mary Barnes, John Klensin, Brian Carpenter, Adrian Farrel, Stephen Farrell, Yaacov Weingarten, L. David Baron, Samuel Weiler, SM, Ole Jacobsen. George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 11] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 5. IANA Considerations This memo includes no request to IANA. 6. Security Considerations This document is not a protocol specification and therefore contains no protocol security considerations. However, some of the above items refer to the physical security of IETF participants and their property. This document is not intended to be a comprehensive discussion of physical security matters for IETF attendees. 7. Informative References [CURRENCY] Yahoo!, "Yahoo! Currency Converter", 2011, <http://finance.yahoo.com/currency-converter/>. [HIROSHIMA] Jacobsen, "Ole Jacobsen's Hiroshima info site", 2009, <http://hiroshima-info.info>. [I-D.barnes-healthy-food] Barnes, M., "Healthy Food and Special Dietary Requirements for IETF meetings", draft-barnes-healthy-food-04 (work in progress), October 2011. [PHILLY] Comcast, "IETF 71 Philadelphia microsite", 2008, <http://ietf71.comcast.net>. [PLUGS] electricaloutlet.org, "Reference site for plug types by location", 2011, <http://electricaloutlet.org/>. [STOCKHOLM] .se, "Internet Wayback Machine version of ietf75.se", 2009, <http://web.archive.org/web/20100812231105/http:// www.ietf75.se/>. [WEATHER] Weather Underground, "Weather Underground", 2011, <http://http://www.wunderground.com/>. [WIKI] IETF, "IETF hosted meeting-specific Wiki pages", 2011, <ht tp://www.ietf.org/registration/MeetingWiki/wiki/doku.php>. George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 12] Internet-Draft george-travel-faq February 2012 Author's Address Wesley George Time Warner Cable 13820 Sunrise Valley Drive Herndon, VA 20171 US Phone: +1 703-561-2540 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org George Expires August 26, 2012 [Page 13]