A list of things to do, to pack and tips on attending a congress, especially Chaos Communication Congress.



List of things to do, to pack and tips on attending a congress, especially Chaos Communication Congress.

This list is irregularly updated (and pushed). You may want to refresh regularly. :-) Pull requests are welcome!


General considerations to make the congress a worthwhile experience for everyone, humans, robots and aliens alike. You’ll also find a list of all the nice humans who have contributed to this list at the bottom.


  • Be excellent to each other.
  • If you spot somebody not being excellent to someone else, remind them to be excellent and have them apologi(s|z)e to the insulted part(y|ies), but only if the insulted wish to be apologi(s|z)ed to. Sometimes the insulted party will just want to move on and not have any further contact with someone who was coarse to them.
  • If you don’t want to be called $swearword, don’t behave like one.
  • Help each other out.
  • Read the “Anti Harrassment Policy” and live by it. :-)
  • Ask if it is ok to take a picture BEFORE taking the picture.

Things to do before traveling

  • Charge ALL the batteries!
  • Make backups.
  • Bonus points for even testing restore
  • Update all the software on your devices.
  • You might want to empty your drives to make room for some COMPLETELY LEGAL media files that might be shared
  • Put your name on your stuff, especially on things you’ll likely lend to someone (power strips, cables etc). Twitter handles make excellent name tags because people know how to contact you right away. Prefer permanent markers over stickers, for theft reasons.
  • You DID make backups of all your devices, didn’t you? That includes portable computers, servers, mobile phones, tablets, navigation devices, wrist watches and all your other $gadgets.
  • Store the backups not only on the device your backing up or another device you’re taking with you. A swiss bank locker is good, if you have one.
  • Send a pull request to this list for all the things I did not think of.
  • Feed the guinea pigs.
  • Water your plants.
  • (optional) Create account in the congress wiki, add your projects and find your assembly.

Things to send

Stuff that you’re not allowed to bring on a plane or otherwise need to send via package courier or freight train. (Depending on its size.)

Items that are explicitly forbidden to bring on a plane

  • Ammunition
  • Fireworks
  • Explosives
  • Lighter benzine
  • Lighter gas (Butane)
  • Matches
  • Lighters (only allowed in hand luggage)
  • Butane cartridges
  • Propane cartridges
  • Radioactive medication
  • Toxics
  • Lead acid batteries
  • Mercury (Quecksilber)
  • Acids
  • Bleach
  • Peroxides
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 7

Not allowed or often problematic on flights, or at least not in hand-lagguage

  • Knives, even some pocket knives
  • Lockpicking equipment
  • Handcuffs

Items only allowed in hand luggage, but not checked in luggage

  • Small lighters

Things to pack


  • Bring ridiculous amounts of LED strips and other photon emitting devices so we can illuminate ALL the things.

This applies to the Congress Center as well as your hotel windows.


  • Train/plane tickets (including verification documents for self-printed DB tickets, like your credit card or Personalausweis)
  • Congress tickets (printed or digital. iOS passbook/wallet, PDF)
  • Passport or other kind of photo ID (Personalausweis)
  • Driver’s license (even an international one)
  • Hotel booking
  • Ham radio license (CEPT license)
  • Hackerspace passport
  • An organ donor card (We really hope you won’t need them, but just in the case: you might save a life!)
  • Your health insurance card
  • Your vaccination documents or history (Impfpass)

Payment stuff

  • Some cash (€uros, or other local currency)
  • Credit card
  • Maestro card (Bankomatkarte)
  • Coins (€uros, for automated vending machines, like public transport tickets)
  • Bitcoin wallet (the encrypted fashion with a good passphrase)
  • Emergency numbers for your bank so you can lock your credit card/debit card/Bankomatkarte in case it gets lost/stolen/left behind.
    • German cards can be locked via the lockinghotline 116 116 (or +49 - 30 4050 4050)
    • For your Bankomat Karte (EC debit card) check if the “Geo Control” of your bank allows withdrawing in your destination country.


  • Cards and PINs for Car-Sharing
  • An app to show local public transport times. Not all cities are available in Google/Apple/You-name-it Maps applications.

Emergency Information for Events:

If you’re in an emergency shout HELP!

If you need help, just call for help, there are many, many friendly people around to help you.

Event and location related emergency information is in a seperate document for the corresponding event in this repository! You may want to copy that info to a notes application on your smartphone or have a printed card in your wallet.

Upcoming events:

33 Chaos Communication Congress (2016-12-27 .. 2016-12-30), Hamburg, Germany, EU

Personal hygiene

  • Tooth brush (plus charger if it is an electrical one)
  • Toothpaste
  • Shower gel
  • Shampoo (to avoid bad hair days)
  • Conditioner
  • Tampons
  • Sanitary towels
  • Condoms, dental dams and other protective gear (Make sure the condoms are not beyond their usage date! (Yes, it really happens…))
  • Lubricant (water based to be compatible with condoms)
  • Disinfectants
  • Soap
  • Deodorant, antiperspirant
  • Hairbrush/comb (to avoid bad hair days)
  • Hair-band (Zopfringerl) to tame your mane
  • Handkerchiefs
  • Towel. Never hitchhike the Galaxy without one.
  • Contact lenses
    • cleaning fluid
    • contact lens container
    • replacement contact lenses
    • replacement glasses
    • eye drops
  • Glasses
  • Spectacle case
  • Cleaning cloth
  • Oropax or other things to plug into your ears for a good “night”’s sleep.
  • Hair dryer (in case your place/hotel doesn’t supply one)


  • Make up
  • Nail polish, also handy to secure screws on your laptop and have a tamper indicator, especially when using one with glitter.
  • Nail polish remover
  • Nail scissors
  • Nail file
  • Razor (with spare blades / plus cable/charger if it is an electrical one)
  • Shaving soap
  • Shaving brush
  • Lipstick/lipgloss
  • Lipbalm
  • Tweezers
  • Cotton swabs (Wattestäbchen)
  • Make up remover pads
  • Skin care


Personal Hygiene

  • Hand desinfectant, yet always wash your hands

Generic medication

  • Patches (Pflaster, for your webcam or if a MacBook AirFrisbee hit you)
  • Aspirin (If you partied too long…)
  • Thomapyrin (analgetic)
  • Parkemed (DE/AT), Ponstel (USA/UK) (analgetic)
  • Clarityn (or other histamine blocker if you’re allergic to something)
  • Neocitran/Theraflu/Paracetamol (just in case hacker pest strikes)
  • Contraceptives, prophylactic (contraceptive pill, condoms, etc.)
  • Caffeine pills (In case you don’t like Mate and nobody knows if you can actually drink the “coffee” served at the venue.)
  • Something for your stomach (if you’ve got a nervous digestive system when under stress, while flying or generally traveling)
  • Camomile tea relives hyperacidity very well
  • Bepanthen

Personal medication

Your personal medication does not belong on the public interwebs for your privacy. This is just a reminder to pack it. Please do not include your personal medications in pull requests. :-) If you need refrigeration for your personal medication, that is possible at the C3 CERT on site. Also remember to pack some reserves of your medication. Better to have too much than not enough with you ;-)


  • At least ONE clean shirt for each day you stay, plus two for traveling to and from congress (nerdy print is always welcome)
  • At least ONE set of clean underwear for each day you stay, plus two for traveling to and from congress (Doesn’t necessarily need to be in matching pairs, but that is up to you.)
  • At least ONE pair of clean socks/stockings/tights/overknees for each day you stay, plus two for traveling to and from congress (again, matching pairs optional)
  • Enough pants/skirts/trousers/dresses/etc. so you can wear clean clothes every day you attend congress (even if somebody accidentally (or intentionally) spills a beverage all over you!)
  • Sewing set (needle, thread, spare button for your trousers/skirts/shirts/blouses/etc.)
  • Long sleeve shirts
  • Hoodies, pullovers, zippers, vests (it’s cold outside!)
  • Jacket, coat (wind proof, at least somewhat water resistant)
  • Cap, wool cap
  • Umbrella
  • Comfortable shoes (You’ll make a lot of distance-units during your stay)
  • Bag to separate laundry from clean clothes in your luggage
  • Gloves
  • Your favorite chainmail body armor
  • Scarf
  • Swim suit, bikini, trunks (in case your hotel has a pool)


Laptop and Devices

  • Laptop (with a working battery) - Maybe clean display and keyboard while you’re at it ;-)
  • USB flash drives
    • Put an OWNER.txt file on them with information on how to contact you in case one gets lost accidentally. (Twitter, phone (for example DECT, 33C3 GSM extensions), email, name of the assembly you’re well known at, owl, raven)
    • For devices with private information be sure to encrypt them! (VeraCrypt, GPG, FileVault, EncFS, Bitlocker, gbde, geli, dm-crypt, LUKS, eCryptFS)
    • make note of the filesystem used so you know if they will work on the system of the person you want to exchange data with. (FAT32 is a safe bet to work everywhere, for larger files ExFAT should also work on most platforms.)
    • Mac: NTFS can be read, but not written to without 3rd party software. FAT, ExFAT, HFS+(J), HFSX are fine for current OS X versions, ZFS and NTFS r/w support need 3rd party software. APFS support is experimental in macOS 10.12 Sierra
  • Ethernet cords (Cat5e) of multiple lengths (Maybe have a spare to tether a friend)
    • USB/Thunderbolt/USB-C to Ethernet RJ45 adapter, if your device needs one (for example thin notebooks)
  • Mass storage drives (take some empty ones with you to fill with data and/or bring your own data and share it!)
  • Tablet computer, iPad, Android tablet, Microsoft surface
  • Kindle
  • An actual book (for those offline blackout moments), see B.O.O.K.

Power and Chargers

  • Charger for laptop
    • Mac: small Duck-head and long (Schuko Plug) cord
    • Mac: MagSafe to MagSafe 2 Adapter
    • Mac: There are also cords that you can plug directly into the MagSafe charger (when removing the duck head) that end in a Euro Plug. These cables are also often used on electric shavers
    • Mac: USB-C type connector/charger
  • Plug adaptor from your country of origin to Schuko Plug
  • 3x to 10x multi-plug power extension (230V AC @50Hz) with Schuko Plug (and optional switch, hotel rooms usually suffer from severe lack of outlets)
  • Simple extension cord (230V AC @50Hz, Schuko Plug, the power outlet in your hotel room may be far away from your bedside)
  • Chargers for all those phones, or at least matching cables if you can charge over USB.
    • iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPad, iPad 2, iPad 3 (The new iPad)
      • USB-A to 30 Pin dock connector (one each)
    • iPhone 5, iPhone 5S, iPhone 6, iPhone 6+, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S+, iPhone SE, iPhone 7, iPhone 7+, iPad 4, iPad mini, iPad mini 2 with retina display, iPad mini 3, iPad mini 2, iPad Air, iPad Air 2, iPad mini 4
      • USB-A to Lightning (one each)
    • most Android phones (and other exotic stuff like WP, Firefox OS, etc)
      • micro USB cable, or
      • USB-C cable
    • DECT phones
      • Charging cradle (with power brick if required)
  • SIM cards (your usual one, local german SIM, CCC SIM)
  • Apple certified SIM eject tool™ (aka bent paperclip) to swap SIM cards
  • Smart Watches
    • Charging cable or docking station required to charge
  • A portable battery pack (aka powerbank) so you can charge on the go. (And the necessary cable to recharge that battery pack overnight. A USB-A to micro USB cable in most cases.)

Wireless and HF

  • SDR Equipment: HackRF, RTL-SDR, Ettus, Rad1o badge
  • DVB-T dongle, there might be local DVB-T transmitter for the streams,
  • Ham radio equipment, portable, the callsign prefix in Germany is DE (Delta Echo)
  • WiFi router/firewall (to connect to the hotel Wifi/network)

Cables and Adapters

  • USB <-> RS232 adapter (preferably FTDI)
  • RS232 cable
  • USB A-B cable
  • Mini USB cable
  • Micro USB cable
  • USB-C cable
  • USB-A to Micro USB 3.0 cable
  • Firewire (400, 800) cable
  • RJ45 Ethernet adapter (from USB-A, USB-C or Thunderbolt) to access the wired network. Thanks for not leeching on the WiFi!
  • Yes, there are way too many different types of USB cables, double check you have them all. Bring a spare to help out a friend!
  • Antenna wire for WiFi or ham radio equipment
  • 3.5mm jack splitter (so you can watch a movie or talk recording together on the train)

Mobil and Communications

  • Phones
    • Mobile phone (GSM) one each
      • for your day-to-day SIM card
      • for an optional SIM card of the country you travel to
      • for a local GSM network at the venue,
    • DECT phone (for the local wireless phone network avilable at many CCC events)
  • SIM cards (your usual one, local german SIM, CCC SIM)
  • Apple certified SIM eject tool™ (aka bent paperclip) to swap SIM cards
  • Smart Watches
    • Charging cable or docking station required to charge
  • Optional 1-10Gigabit Ethernet Switch

Camera (but please remember to ask if it is ok to take a picture BEFORE taking the picture)

  • Photo camera / Actioncam / DSLR
    • Batteries
    • Charger
    • Memory cards (CF, SD, SDHC, xD, memory stick, etc.)
      • freshly formatted
      • with an OWNER.txt file, so people know how to contact you in case of lost+found.
    • Card reader to import pictures (if your laptop doesn’t have a matching built-in card reader)
      • the necessary cable/adapter to connect that Card reader.
    • Camera bag
    • Camera strap
    • Lenses with lens caps
    • Lens cleaning cloth
    • External Flash
      • Batteries, Battery Pack
      • Charger for those as well
  • Tripod or Monopod

Talk gear

  • Monitor adapters (VGA, DVI, HDMI, mini Displayport/Displayport, USB-C; especially for the Mac users and those with other fancy slim laptops. ;-) ), you may need them for your presentation or lightning talk.
  • Remote control for your presentation / lightning talk (also check the batteries in the remote), dont’ forget the USB dongle if your remote requires one
  • Infrared, Bluetooth or radio remote (for presentations) and also check their batteries


  • r0cket, fully charged (needs a micro USB cable for charging/programming)
  • Rad1o badge


  • Cat5 o’nine tails
  • Throwing star LAN Tap
  • Pineappleboard
  • Torch (Have spare batteries or rechargeables and a matching charger that works with 230V≈ @50Hz)
  • Headlamp
  • LED throwies
  • Tesla coils
  • Headphones (Closed type) (so you don’t have to talk to other carbon units while traveling)
  • Neck cushion (for long journeys)
  • All your devices!!1 ((Raspberry|Orange|Banana) Pi, Arduino, FreedomBox, DreamPlug, …)
    • + cables + SD-cards (+ GPIO equipment)
    • + extra WiFi antenna (USB) and/or extra Ethernet cord
    • + WiFi Dongle (USB)
    • + USB Keyboard
    • + USB Rodent
    • + HDMI cable to connect a display
  • Pocket knife (Conforming to the German Weapons Act: Blade must not exceed 12cm; Folding knifes with locking blades must not be designed to be opened with one hand. Also, “thrusting weapons” such as daggers, stilettos, swords etc. are restricted items.)
    • Swiss knife
    • Victorinox cybertool
    • Leatherman (check for one-handed opening mechanisms, such as thumb holes or studs)
  • Screw drivers, pit set
  • Soldering iron
    • solder
    • solder pump
    • flux
  • Any other tools you may need (even if unlikely)
  • Analog notebook (dead tree style)
  • Pen, pencil, quill
  • Winkekatze, there are Operators on site
  • Rubber ducks
  • NERF guns and ammuntion
  • Musical instruments (guitar, trumpet, grand piano, theremin, laser harp, cajón, gameboy, ukulele, tesla coils)
  • Electronic Tuner (with fresh batteries)
  • Cable ties
  • A Slinky for the escalators
  • Duct tape or gaffer tape (vital)
  • Knitting/sewing needles and yarn (for guerrilla knitting/yarn bombing)
  • A blanket
  • A pillow (and sleeping bag/camping mat if you intend to sleep at the gym or in heaven)
  • Your favourite tea/coffee

If you travel with your dog

Please check in advance if dogs are allowed at the event you want to attend. Guide dogs are usually exempt, even if dogs are not allowed. - Blanket - Food (wet & dry, Snacks) - Containers for water and food - Brush - Tick forceps / tick tweezers - Backup leash - Medication


  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag & pillow
  • Air-matress
  • Water proof clothing
  • 230V/16A(blue)-to-your-country adaptor & extension
  • Cat5e extension cable (10-30m)
  • Food
  • Bin bags (for rubbish and dirty clothes)


  • Have a look at the Fahrplan and maybe make a preselection of talks you really “have to”, “want to” or “would be nice to“ see
  • Install one of the Fahrplan apps for Android (PlayStore, Source) or iOS (iTunes)
  • Be sure to schedule a period of time to get your T-Shirt or pullover/hoodie/zipper (when preordered in the first two days)!
  • Have a sense of how the trains are going from the station near by, enter Dammtor here: direct connections to the airport, enter Dammtor at start and Airport

Securing your devices

All security measures for devices on public Internet networks also apply here – threats might come from untrusted devices within, as well as from maleficent third parties outside the Congress network. Of course you should have these measures in place everywhere and all the time since event networks are no more or no less dangerous than the internet in general.

Read the How to survive guide in the Congress Wiki. There are many excellent tips in there or consult you local CryptoParty meetup, CCC ERFA or hackspace friends.


Make fresh backups of ALL the devices you bring to CCCongress. Test that you can actually restore data from those backups! Have something to backup your laptop on site as well.

BIOS/EFI Password

Make sure you do have set a BIOS or EFI Password to prevent booting from a live CD to attack your system.

Full disk encryption

Activate full disk encryption with pre-boot authentication. (Mac: Activate FileVault, FreeBSD: GELI, Linux: Cryptsetup, Windows: Windows? S’SLY?)


You did make fresh backups of all your devices, did you?


Check that all your server services are using proper TLS. See or other sources you trust for help on how to properly configure your servers. (Mail, Web, VPN, SSH, etc.)

VPN tunnel

Have at least one trusted, working and tested VPN endpoint available for tunneling out of the congress network. If you don’t have your own VPN server at your disposal ask friends you trust to help you out. If you do, ask your friends if they need a VPN endpoint and share!

Don’t use PPTP, IKEv1, PSK VPNs anymore. Make sure your VPN works with IP and Legacy IP without leaking DNS and other traffic.

Also have those tunnels configured on ALL the devices you intend to use on the local network of the venue, and have it tested. That includes your laptops, phones, tablets, servers, fridge, etc.


It is not recommended to connect your smartphone to the congress wifi, if you still can’t resist, here are a few things to consider:

  • Make sure that it’s not a 802.11b device, as it would slow down the complete wifi network.
  • Disable all synchronization services, as they might be using plaintext.
  • Disable all auto-discovery services (network music players, remote control apps, etc …).
  • Make sure there are no known exploits for your device (not that unknown-to-you exploits wouldn’t be a possible risk as well…).
  • Turn off push notifications.
  • Update your apps, especially your browser.
  • Use a VPN tunnel if possible.
  • Use a Firewall and only allow the (few) services you trust.
  • If you don’t have a VPN tunnel available, you can use OnionBrowser (iOS) or Orbot (Android) to surf via tor (which may be it’s own kind of risk).
  • Set your GSM network selection to manual or you might end up connected to a rogue GSM network by somebody.

If you are unsure that there might still be some services running and transmitting plaintext data, do not connect.

PrePaid SIM Cards

Make sure you get a right sized SIM card for your GSM mobile phone! If you need help with buying a SIM card, ask a local for assistance. They’re friendly!

For when you return home

  • store chocolate/chips/crisps at home as an post-event depression antidote
  • Make notes during CCCongress to watch all the lectures you missed on site because you were attending an awesome workshop or were having interesting conversations with people.

Thanks for being awesome

These people have contributed to improve this list for everyone (in no particular order):


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A list of things to do, to pack and tips on attending a congress, especially Chaos Communication Congress. ...



A list of things to do, to pack and tips on attending a congress, especially Chaos Communication Congress. ...

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