Panel Submissions for 2021 are closed. They will open by MARCH 31st, 2021.

Confirmation e-mails notifying that we received your panel submissions are immediately sent upon sending in your submission. If you do not receive an e-mail there’s a very chance high chance we did not receive your entry. We will not accept panel/event submissions for any reason whatsoever past June 15th so don’t be late. All fields with a * are required but we recommend to fill out every question.

The Fandom Meeting (Meetups) form is located here. Do Not use the event submission form for fandom meetings. The fan meeting form, opening in March open until July 25th. Please read over the Event Panel FAQ if you have any questions about submitting your panel/event.


To answer the questions we get in about 18+ panels here will be the policies on it.

  • Everyone entering an 18+ panel must have a government-issued ID with their photo on it. This includes Drivers License, Miltary ID, Passport or Texas State ID. An expired ID is okay as long as it as your current birthday and your photo is on it.
  • We do not accept: Social Security Cards, School IDs or temporary Drivers License papers. No exceptions.
  • Everyone enter must be at least 18 years old. No children allowed in at all even if under 1 year old.
  • We do not allow Guardians or Parents over 18 to bring in their child/sibling under 18 years old at all for any reason whatsoever. No Exceptions.
  • You must be at least 18 years old at the start of the day in order to enter a panel.
  • If you can’t or will not show ID then you’re not allowed in at all even if you look 60.

Event Panel FAQ

Question Answer
If I receive a %50 / 75% discount code can I use it for a 1-day pass?No. Panelist discount codes will only work for 3-day Passes. There are NO exceptions given even if you're only attending/presenting for one day.
I absolutely must get in touch with Programming for a burning question. What should I do?As listed multiple times in the FAQ you can send an e-mail to programming(at)san-japan.org OR use our contact form which goes to the same person. If you need assistance then head to the Panelist Check-In booth before 6pm Friday/Saturday.
I missed the deadline to submit my panel. Can I submit it by e-mail or through this contact form? What about last minute fill in?Your panel submission will not be considered if you miss the deadline. We do not consider submissions submitted through our contact form or by e-mail. Please have your submission in by June 15th.
There's a lot of discussion about Character Q&A's. What is San Japan take on it?We decided that after years of seeing submissions that we're putting a ban on Character Q&As and variants. The reason for these decisions is based on the quality of these panels in the past and the feedback received from attendees which have not been favorable.
What changes are put in place?Here are some decisions about San Japan programming:
  • Programming for Saturday will be limited to one panel total per standard panelist. This is being enacted as just about every submission we get in wants their panel on that day. When we release the schedule we get flooded by messages saying it is schedule conflict causing us to nearly rewrite the entire Beta schedule. This will also allow us to put in a lot more variety on Saturday for panelists.

  • Friday will be limited to two panels total per standard panelist. There will be a much higher chance of approval if the panelist says they're willing to hold the panel on Sunday. There will not be any limit on the number of panels they can hold on Sunday. We are putting a much greater emphasis on Sunday programming.

  • We are no longer holding 17+ panels. All panels rated 18+ will require all attendees to show a government-issued picture ID in order to enter. We will not allow game demos as a panel. Game demos from a company must take place in the appropriate gaming section. We will try to send at least one mass email sent out to approved panelists along with posting a list of approved panels. It will be on the panelist to ensure they check their Spam mailbox. We have lowered the number of required hours down to TWO hours. In doing this we're only approving up to TWO badges per person.
I have my own equipment that I brought with me for my panel. Where can I store it?We do not allocate any space for storing personal items used for panels. Please make sure that you plan ahead and either have a hotel room or another storage option on-site. We are not liable for any lost, stolen, or damaged items that are left at San Japan.
Do you compensate a group beyond a comp badge to anyone?All groups who are not announced guests will only be offered a complimentary badge if they are approved and scheduled for at least 2 hours of programming. Groups who solicit their services requesting a room/booth/travel/payment to put on certain programming will be declined.
Someone else is helping me set up for the panel, how do I ensure they’re let in along with me?When checking in, note that you or your friend is helping out so a PANELIST ribbon is issued to both of you. This will let the staff member at the door know to let you in before the others.
I used the discount code but now I can't make it to San Japan. Do I get a refund?There will be not be any refunds for badges purchased using the discount code, nor will we allow you to transfer it to anyone.
I am a panelist but I don’t have a badge, how do I get into the panel room?Stop by Panel Check In at least 45 minutes before your panel set up time is scheduled to start. We will ensure you’re able to get into your assigned panel room first. Tenative Placement for Check-In is by the Hall 4B Entrance in the Convention Center right by Hall 4B Entrance.
I pre-registered for San Japan but then got approved for 2 hours of panels. Do I get a refund for my badge? Or reimbursed?We will not be issuing refunds to approved panelists who have already pre-registered for a convention badge. There will not be any exceptions.
When will the discount codes be distributed? Will it be before pre-reg ends?The codes will be distributed on August 25th, 2021.

We do not send out codes at the following times:
  • After your panel is submitted.
  • When we inform you that your panel is initially approved.
  • When PRE-REGISTRATION is open.
  • AFTER Pre-Registration closes.
  • When the BETA schedule is released.
  • Immediately after the FINAL schedule is released.

We can not stress this with a ton of emphasis due to panelists constantly e-mailing Programming: Panelist Codes are sent out on August 25th. We will send out a mass e-mail to all approved panelists with their panelist code. If you have not received your code by August 26th then you may contact Programming. Repeatedly asking for the code before August 25th will have severe effects on any future approvals.

Why is the maximum panel length 90 minutes?We want to give as many panelists as possible a chance to talk or put on an event at San Japan. We’ve run into issues over the years with people trying to put on 2-4 hour events with the sole intent of getting a free badge. Only selected long-time panelists who’ve shown multiple years of putting on quality panels will be granted extended run-times.
My panel is more than 90 minutes, what do I do?Please send multiple panel submissions split into 1 or 1.5 hours long. If you want to run an event that is longer than 90 minutes, you must contact us privately along with sending us your proposal, which we will discuss privately. We don't want to discourage great ideas from hitting our inbox. We have had some great ideas come through like a Persona event block so don't hesitate to contact us
What is the maximum panel length?We will only allow most fan panels/events to be up to 90 minutes long. If your panel/events require more than 90 minutes, then you will need to send multiple panel submissions. If your event includes a preliminary round then a finalist round, or if you would like to hold more than one session, you will need to submit multiple panels.
I want to run a console tournament, how do I submit it?E-mail gaming(at)san-japan.org in your interest to run a game tournament. Gaming tournaments do not count as panelist hours.
I want do a fan meeting (meetup), what do I do?Go to our Fandom Meeting (Meetup) form to fill it out. Fan Meetings do not count as panelist hours nor will a discount code be issued.
I only got approved for 1 - 1.5 hours, is there any kind of discount or incentive for panelists?We will be issuing discount codes for 1 hours and 2 hours of APPROVED programming. These codes will be issued AFTER Pre-Registration has closed. They can only be used for 3-day regular attendee passes. Up to TWO (2) codes will be issued. We are no longer issuing discounts beyond two people. If your approved panel(s) has more than two people then the additional panelists will need to purchase a badge at full price. For 1 hours of approved panels, a 50% discount code will be issued. For 1.5 hours of approved panels, a 75% discount code will be issued.
What are some tips to get my panel/event approved?
  • Be original.

  • Character Panels are not accepted. This even includes Character Q&A variants so take that into major consideration. Asking for an exception will not be considered. We heavily recommend creating a Fandom Meeting to allow you to hold Character Q&As.

    We are not the only convention in Texas to take this stance on Character Q&As. Write a thorough description. 1-2 sentence descriptions with a generic panel title will most definitely get skipped. We need to know exactly what you have planned and how you are going to do it.

  • Make a good pitch. Tell us what will happen at your panel/event, and why attendees will want to come to it. Unique ideas will be given higher consideration. Remember that your description will end up in the program if you are approved. You want the attendees to be as excited about attending your panel as you are about organizing it. Grammar and spelling are very important if you are going to be addressing a crowd during a panel. It also helps to make a good first impression on those evaluating panel submissions.

We will shut down panels if the person lies on their application on the material shown at which they will be banned from all future programming forever.

Something came up. Who do I contact to let San Japan know I need to cancel on my panel?Use our contact form OR e-mail programming(at)san-japan.org to let Panels/Programming Team know, or find a staff member with a radio to get in contact with the Panels/Programming Team. The earlier you can let us know the better. Being a no-call/no-show at San Japan will greatly affect on being approved for any future panels. We do keep track of canceled panels.
What is the capacity of my panel room?This is to be determined. We will have a field in which you should list your expected capacity so that you’re scheduled in the right size room. Please try to be as accurate as possible, though we understand this can be difficult to calculate for new panels.
Where is a layout of the convention so I know where my panel is located?The layout will be posted in the Location page prior to the convention. During the convention, there will be a map in every program and posted in certain areas of the con. If you get lost you can go to one of the Info Desk locations for directions. The staff at the Panelist Check-In area can also direct you to your panel room.
What do I need to do to ensure I get the right setup?

Be as thorough as possible when filling out the tech section of your event submission. Forgetting to mention a projector or a certain kind of adapter will likely cause your panel to start late as our techs go off your original submission form when setting up.

Please do not presume that we will have adapters on-hand if you will be using a phone, tablet or a proprietary device. We will have the basics for HDMI or VGA input along with 3.5"/headphone audio input on-hand but you will be required to bring your own adapters. If you arrive at your panel then remember at that point you need an item, flag down any staff member and they will call in to have a part delivered. This request will be handled LAST if we have other technical needs that are being taken care of.

We will no longer tech tablets for panelists.

We do not provide tablets, laptops or electronic devices at all. We also do not provide internet hotspots to panelists.

If you need internet access you will need to set that up yourself like setting up your phone as a hotspot.

Does San Japan offer internet access?No. If your panel requires internet access then you will need to bring your own hotspot or tether your phone. The internet in the HBG is not free in panel rooms, costs $15 for 700kb access which is too slow to stream anything.
How do I check-in for my panel?Panelist Check-In is marked on the convention map (TENTATIVE LOCATION: Hall 4B Entrance, HBG Convention Center). Once you arrive at check in, please give your name and the name of the panel you are running. The staff here will go over what you requested for your panel on your submission, and they can help with any last-minute needs. Please arrive no later than 45 minutes before your scheduled start time so that we have ample time to get you checked in, take care of any needs, and get you to your panel. Check-In will be open Thursday before the con. Please keep in mind that we keep track of every panelist that checks in (or doesn’t), and we will take this into consideration when selecting approved panelists next year.
Where do I pick up my comp or discounted panelist badge? Do I go to Registration?Panelists who receive a comp or discounted badge will pick up their badge at registration like a standard attendee. Once you have your badge, or if you don’t have a badge and are only attending San Japan to run your panel, please head to Panelist Check In to pick up your Panelist Ribbon.
How many panel/event hours do I need to put on to get a comp panelist badge?For San Japan, the required amount of hours approved/scheduled to receive a complimentary badge is TWO. We will be giving out discount codes for panelists who have 1 or 1.5 hours of panel hours on the final schedule. Panelists who have less than one hour approved and scheduled will not receive any discount. All codes will be issued by August 25th.
My panel was approved but I’m not on the beta schedule, what happened?Due to time and space restrictions, we sometimes approve panels that do not end up on the schedule. However, due to cancellations and other occurrences, we may contact an approved panelist, later on, to add them to the schedule. We encourage approved panelists to stay available until the final schedule is released.
When is the cut-off?All panel submissions must be made by June 15th at 8:59 PM Central Time.
Is my panel approved?We will e-mail all approved panels up to three weeks after panel submissions close. Approved Panelists will also receive an email confirmation. Approved panels do not guarantee placement on the final schedule. We are limited by the number of panel rooms and the schedule. Please do not e-mail us after you've sent in your panel submission to ask if you've been approved as this will have a major effect if you are approved at all.
Does it cost anything to run a panel? Is there a minimum age to run a panel?It does not cost anything to run a panel at San Japan. There is no minimum age to run a panel.
When will I know when my panel is approved or declined?We will have all approval and rejection emails sent out by June 30th. If you inquire before June 30th if your panel has been approved then this will greatly affect your application status. If after June 30th that you have not received an e-mail (which will be sent out by mass email) then you may email programming(at)san-japan.org. If you are completely unsure then contact after June 30th as you will be notified once again if it's approved, denied or on hold.
Can I see which panels have been approved?We will no longer list which panels have been approved as some panelists tend to drop out after they've been approved which will disappoint attendees. The final schedule will list the approved confirmed panels. Panel descriptions of approved panels will be posted by August 25th.