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South by Southwest started in 1987 with a crowd of just 700


[ When ]March, Annually

[ City ]Austin, Texas

[ Good For ]Alternative music, film and digital lovers

[ Weather ]Springtime, a bit of everything

[ Crowd ]30,000 registered plus many more

[ Cost ]$$$

[ Sex Work ]

Illegal except for a few states

[ Sexy Score ]   

South by South West, commonly known as SXSW is three concurrent conferences held annually in Austin Texas. The conferences showcase music, film and digital technologies over 9 days. Thousands of people from around the world attend the conference, while many others head for Austin for the shows, parties and atmosphere.

Getting There

Book early. Book early. Book. Early. This goes for your hotel, flights and conference pass, in that order. There are plenty of options for each, as long as you get in early.

You can purchase a pass for each individual conference or a combined one for all three. Did we mention book early?

Where to Stay

Hotels get very busy during this time but there is a large variety for all budgets. Try to get one close to the convention centre though or you will feel like you’re missing out. There are shuttle services to and from hotels but SXSW is all about discovery and spontaneity so it will be far more rewarding to walk and let yourself be directed by your senses.

You can book a room directly from the SXSW website once you’ve registered. There are waiting lists to join if you need to as well. 

Sexy Score

SXSW is loaded with the coolest hipsters from the sexiest industries, partying for days on end and filling an entire city’s worth of hotel rooms...add the rush of live music and discovering new things and you’ve got a hell of sexy cocktail.

At the Festival

South by Southwest is huge. Really, really big. Prepare yourself for some disappointment as it’s simply not possible to see everything. However, also prepare yourself to have your mind blown, your senses ignited, and that warm superiority feeling that comes with discovering a band before anyone else!

Sex in other Cities Tipsheet
  • Decide what you want from the conference early. Are you are there to network and be discovered or just to rock out and party? Decide before you get there and forget trying to do both.
  • Pack comfortable shoes. You’ll be walking, dancing and moshing for hours on end, so leave the Manolo’s behind.
  • We’ve already mentioned the need to book early, but this can’t be understated. The conference gets more popular (and commercial) every year so plan ahead.
  • Download the festival app and try to plan your days as much as possible. Make a list of must-sees, might-sees but leave some time to explore and stumble across some hidden gems.
  • Pack for rain and burning sun – you’ll probably get both.
  • Monitor social media (Twitter) for news of impromptu or secret gigs.
  • Hang onto your registration pass – you’ll need it to get in just about anywhere. Keep it safe.
  • Drink lots of water and find as much free food as you can – to compensate for all the free booze you will also find!
  • Remember, you must be 21 to drink in the US, so if you’re not there yet, it’s probably best to go in a year or two when you are.
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What could go wrong

Heat, alcohol, dancing and large crowds can equal disaster pretty quickly if you don’t pace yourself. It’s a long crazy week, so be sure to grab a moments rest as often as you can. A queue to see a hot new band can be either annoying and stressful, or a great way to chill out and meet people, depending on your mindset.

Where to get help

With many people and police around, getting help is not difficult. If you are able to make your own way and need medical assistance, visit:

North Austin Medical Center 12221 Mopac Expressway North Austin, Tx 78758 Telephone: (512) 901-1850

For an STI test, visit:
Wellness Testing Services 4207 James Casey St #101 Austin, TX 78745 +1 512-814-7836


Header Image: Ablegamers

Thumbnail: Photoblog Statesman

Want to know more?

Sex on holiday happens.

Whether planned or not, away from home we lose at least some of our inhibitions
and may take more risks than we would at home. 

This is ok, it’s what makes travelling so exciting.
Accepting this before we go is the first step to planning.

To help you get home with no more than a bruised bank account
and awesome memories, here are some useful tips:

  • Carry condoms. Pack condoms before you leave home. Condoms aren’t always readily available or good quality so grab some before you leave and carry a supply in your handbag or wallet. Holidays and a sense of freedom doesn’t make you less susceptible to STIs so take care every time you have sex.
  • Have an STI test before you go and after you get back. Click here for testing locations.
  • Sex workers in other countries are not always in a safe environment or hold the same standards of safer sex and STI testing as they do in Australia. Use condoms and insist on using them.
  • Holidays can encourage us to try drugs and drink more alcohol than we might at home. Your body is still your body, regardless of where you are – know your limits and keep to them. Drugs and alcohol can impair our ability to keep our wits about us and recognise dangers – in a foreign place this becomes even more important. 

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