Frequently Asked Questions
What should I expect from Offline Camp?
Offline Camp is a relaxed-yet-productive weekend with others passionate about Offline First, engaged in deep discussion and lighthearted fun. We aim to provide a welcoming, inclusive, and respectful environment for a diverse group of participants (see our Code of Conduct and Diversity Statement). We also limit the group to 30 people so we can truly have the chance to get to know each other.
Our content is driven by campers, with attendees nominating and voting on Offline First topics to be discussed in unconference sessions. There are multiple discussions on wide-ranging topics happening simultaneously, with group recaps to catch you up on sessions you’ve missed. (Many of our past discussion topics are chronicled in our Medium publication.) Please bring ideas on specific topics you’d like to discuss with the group.
We also offer campers the opportunity to present 5-minute passion talks on their diverse interests. These informal talks don’t need to be related to Offline First, nor be technical. If you have a hobby or other pursuit you’re excited about, we look forward to hearing about it! (Videos of many of our past passion talks have been shared with campers’ permission in our Medium publication.)
Conversation and relaxation
We believe that the casual conversations we have around the campfire can be as important as our more structured discussions. With that in mind, we leave some free time in the schedule for engaging with your fellow campers in a relaxing setting. Our baroque mansion is surrounded by woods, meadows, and gardens, perfect for a scenic stroll while you connect with a new friend.
The Offline Camp experience is pretty awesome. Seriously, just incredible. Like kittens and Nutella all wrapped in one (unless you're allergic to cats or hazelnuts or chocolate, in which case we are sad for you). In can be tough to explain in words what makes the camp format so great, so we made these videos to show you what camp is all about. Whenever we feel blue, we watch them to cheer ourselves up. Enjoy.
Location, lodging, and food
Where does Offline Camp Berlin take place? How far away is the nearest airport or train station?
Offline Camp Berlin will be hosted at Schloss Blankensee in Trebbin, Germany, outside of Berlin. When booking your travel, please be careful to allow sufficient travel time. Visit the Schloss Blankensee website for directions and estimated travel times from transport hubs around Berlin, including:
- 🚆 Trebbin Bahnhof - 9.7 km (approx 15 minutes by car)
- ✈️ Berlin Schönefeld Airport - 44.6 km (approx 35 minutes by car)
- ✈️ Berlin Tegel Airport - 45.6 km (approx 55 minutes by car)
- 🚆 Berlin Hauptbahnhof - 46.6 km (approx 65 minutes by car)
How can I reach Schloss Blankensee from the Trebbin train station? Is there bus or taxi service?
Unfortunately there will be no bus service on the Monday holiday, and the bus runs so infrequently that it won't be useful on Friday either. But thanks to our generous sponsors, we will be offering free taxi service between the Trebbin Bahnhof (train station) and Schloss Blankensee during our peak arrival and departure periods. You must make a reservation by Tuesday, 24 April in order to use this free service! Please submit this form now to request your ride. (If you will be arriving late or departing early, this service won't be available. In that case, we encourage you to either request your own taxi from Trebbin Bahnhof or join the Offline First Slack team and connect with your fellow campers in the #camp channel to discuss carpooling.)
When should I arrive/depart?
Please plan to arrive between 15:00 and 17:00 on Friday, April 28 so you can get settled in before dinner. We hope that everyone will be able to stay through breakfast on Monday, May 1, departing around 11:00. Formal discussions will wrap up just before dinner on Sunday, so if you do need to leave Sunday night or early Monday morning, you can, but we’ll miss you. (You can visit our schedule page for a more complete view of the weekend.)
Will we really be camping?
Not in the traditional pitching-a-tent sense, no. We have a bed reserved for you in our mansion. But it’s like summer camp in the sense that we will enjoy each other, enjoy nature, and enjoy lots of s’mores. (You are more than welcome to bring your own tent if you actually prefer it to a bed!)
Will we really be offline?
Although we’ll be discussing Offline First, we will indeed have internet access available in the mansion. Yes, yes, it’s ironic. We know. Frankly, we think you’ll be so engaged in discussion and s’more-making with your fellow campers that you won’t be tempted to go online other than to post about how jealous everyone else should be.
What are the sleeping accommodations like?
You will have a bed of your own, but it will most likely be in a bedroom or bunkroom shared with others. (The first campers to register get the biggest beds!) We will do our best to accommodate preferences for sharing bedrooms with others of specific genders, as shared on our Camper Info Form. Co-ed, private bathrooms will be shared with your fellow campers. Bedding and towels are provided.
What meals are provided? Can you accommodate dietary restrictions?
We will provide breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and non-alcoholic beverages from Friday dinner through Monday breakfast. (You are welcome to bring your own favorite beverages to enjoy with moderation, per our Code of Conduct.) When you complete your Camper Info Form, please share any allergies or dietary restrictions. We will have vegetarian options available at every meal, and the chefs at Schloss Blankensee will strive to accommodate other needs as shared on your form at least two weeks prior to the event.
What should I pack?
We’ll share a recommended packing list about a week before the event. Note that bedding and towels will be provided for you, just like at a hotel.
Odds & Ends
Do you have a Code of Conduct or Diversity Statement?
Yes, both! We are dedicated to creating a safe and welcoming environment for all campers. All guests are asked to review the Code of Conduct before registering for camp, and our organizing team is available to address any concerns on site. You can read our Diversity Statement to learn more about our efforts to create a diverse community, and how you can help!
Who else is coming to camp? How can we connect?
We don’t share campers’ email addresses, even with our sponsors. Instead, we encourage you to follow your fellow campers on Twitter, as well as to join the Offline First Slack team and connect with other campers in the #camp channel before, during, and after camp.
How can I support Offline Camp?
Generous sponsors enable us to make Offline Camp possible. Please encourage your company to sponsor, or make a personal donation to our scholarship fund so we can bring more awesome folks to camp.
Where can I learn more about Offline First before camp?
We've worked hard to curate all kinds of Offline First content for you, from articles and case studies to videos and podcasts. Past campers have even written up summaries of the awesome discussions they had when they were at camp! Visit our resources page to get started.
How can I reach you with additional questions?
We believe that innovation is enhanced by a variety of perspectives, and that the future of the Offline First movement depends on embracing diversity. Our goal is to create an inclusive and respectful camp environment that encourages participation from all people regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, religion (or lack thereof), technology choices, or depth of technical proficiency. (See our Code of Conduct.)
We're working to increase the diversity of Offline First and Offline Camp communities through our recruitment process and through dialogue with the broader tech and business communities.
You can help us build a diverse camp experience by:
* Recommending attendees from groups underrepresented in tech.
* Forwarding information about Offline Camp to relevant affinity groups with the message that we are looking for a diverse mix of attendees.
* Making a personal donation to our scholarship fund to subsidize ticket costs (full or partial) for a potential camper who needs financial assistance.
* Becoming a corporate Diversity Sponsor to fund a camper’s full camp experience, including travel expenses. (Email our sponsorship team .)
* Sharing your ideas on how we can make the on-site camp experience (or our web presence) more welcoming and supportive, free from intimidation and marginalization (email us).
We value diversity in the communities we serve, and we welcome your contributions to bringing balanced representation of the richness of our collective human experience.
The above diversity statement is adapted from the Conference Diversity Statement of O'Reilly Media, Inc., which is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.