San Diego Comic-Con International: No more four-day badges for 2014

Jan. 10, 2014 | 1:56 p.m.

Derek Bond as the Joker and Melanie Watson as Catwoman in front of the San Diego Convention Center on the second full day of Comic-Con. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Angie Rodriguez (dressed as Two Face from Batman) leads Jonathon Antone (dressed as Scarecrow from Batman) by a rope necklace in front of the San Diego Convention Center on the second full day of Comic-Con. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Holly and Will Blagg of Apple Valley, Calif., in front of the San Diego Convention Center on the second full day of Comic-Con. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Zombie Dino attacks Christina Peredia (dressed as Rogue) in front of the San Diego Convention Center on the second full day of Comic-Con. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Briana Roecks of Los Angeles is one of the many people who attended Comic-Con in costume. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Father and son Dave and Jeff Teal of San Diego. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Stephan and Heather Reese of South Pasadena. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Kiesi Campbell, from left, Agnela Darbellay of San Francisco, Karli Campbell, April Campbell and Karol Campbell. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Two of the many people who attended Comic-Con in costume. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Christopher Meehan, 13, left, Patrick Meehan, Ryan Meehan, 12, and Charlott Meehan, 8.(Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Garrett Henry of Semi Valley and John Plocharczyle. (Kirk McKoy/ Los Angeles Times)

Brittany Fonseca, right, and Mae Twiggs of Matika, Calif. (Kirk McKoy/ Los Angeles Times)

Grant Thompson and Suki Berry from San Diego. (Kirk McKoy/ Los Angeles Times)

Julia Welden, left, and Alison Chalker of Mountain View, Calif. (Kirk McKoy/ Los Angeles Times)

Arnette Garcia and Alex Lechuga of El Paso, Texas . (Kirk McKoy/ Los Angeles Times)

Stephanie Flynn of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. (Kirk McKoy/ Los Angeles Times)

Comic-Con International is making some changes in its registration and ticketing process for its 2014 San Diego expo, including eliminating the extremely popular four-day badges.

Only single-day badges will be sold for this year’s convention, which runs July 24-27 at San Diego’s waterfront convention center.

People who want to attend Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday will have to purchase a badge for each day, Comic-Con explained on its website. Only those who purchase badges for all four days will be eligible to buy a badge for Wednesday’s Preview Night, which is not a stand-alone badge option. Attendees who purchase badges for all four days will be able to consolidate them into one four-day badge onsite.

Comic-Con International is implementing additional changes to its much-maligned registration system, which is notorious for glitches and system crashes, including a new pre-registration option for those who attended in 2013 and have a valid member ID. (In 2015, Comic-Con will also require attendees to retain their physical badges and badge codes from 2014 in order to pre-register.)

Other changes include a shopping cart feature, single-session purchasing for multiple guests, landing page validation to keep ineligible registrants out of the queue and improved site performance due to load-testing, according to Comic-Con’s official blog.

Dates for preregistration have yet to be announced but are expected to occur this month. Those who are eligible to preregister will be notified via email at least 48 hours prior to the sale. Open online registration for the general public, as well as for professionals, exhibitors, volunteers, staff and press, will occur at a later date.

Ticket prices have increased for 2014, with single-day badges for adults costing $35 for Preview Night, $45 for Thursday-Saturday badges (up from $42 in 2013) and $30 for Sunday (up from $24). People who attend all four days and Preview Night this year will pay $200; last year’s four-day badge with Preview Night cost $175. Minors age 13-17, seniors and U.S. military pay discounted prices. Children 12 and under are free with a paying adult.

The annual pop culture expo typically draws some 130,000 people to San Diego’s Gaslamp District each year, a massive convergence of sci-fi, fantasy, horror, video game, comics and other genre entertainment enthusiasts and professionals. The behemoth event includes panels, screenings, portfolio reviews and a masquerade, and has become the site of many major Hollywood announcements and first glimpses of film footage as well as a retail mecca.

Click through the images in the gallery above for a look at some of the costumed attendees who turned up for the event last year.

– Noelene Clark | @NoeleneClark | Google+

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