Have you ever "camped out" for an iPhone on launch day? If so, any tips?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by zooby, Sep 9, 2016.

  1. zooby, Sep 9, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2017
  2. CooKieMoNs7eR macrumors 68000


    Nov 18, 2009
    Good ol days man....my first iPhone was iPhone 4 and I stood in line for 13 hours and got it, we had so much fun in line, everyone was cracking jokes lol and they also gave us some snacks and coffee....well worth the wait
  3. applepie2100 macrumors regular

    Apr 22, 2015
    I've done a couple of early sit outs and I'd suggest taking something like a camp stool to give your legs a rest. Get to know your fellow campers to because it can actually be quite a social event.

    Try not to get too upset at the scalpers either, nothing you can do to stop them taking the proverbial so just enjoy your new phone when you do get it and know that you've been part of the experience!
  4. Goldfrapp macrumors 601


    Jul 31, 2005
    The chances for any JB in stock are very very slim.
  5. lordofthereef macrumors G5


    Nov 29, 2011
    Boston, MA
    My tips are, if your store is inside a mall, find out early when they are allowing lines. Here in New England they have police shooing people away. It is a literal waste of time to get there much before 6am (when they allow for lines). If at all possible go to a standalone Apple store where you won't get hassled one bit.

    If you are after jet black, get there early. If there are more than a dozen people ahead of you you are quite possibly SOL, particularly if they don't limit numbers.
  6. nrvna76 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 4, 2010
    I camped out for the 6. Awful. I do not recommend it. Even the first couple of people in line could not get the size/capacity/color combination they wanted.
  7. zooby, Sep 9, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2017

    zooby thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 2, 2008
  8. bitslap47 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 9, 2007
    Bring 2 empty bottles. Don't expect just the water bottles you empty while in line to be sufficient. When waiting in line, your salt intake is lower than typical, and so your body's water balance changes.
  9. JackieInCo Suspended

    Jul 18, 2013
    I did it for every iPhone up till the 4S. Decided it just wasn't worth standing in a line for 6+ hrs just to get a phone. The last time I stood in line was at the Apple store at the Flatirons in Boulder Colorado. Got there about 6AM. They handed out tickets for the people who were guaranteed a phone and the rest of the people were told they could take a chance and wait or leave. Most people without a ticket left.
  10. vishalc macrumors regular


    Sep 16, 2014
    Yes, I reached my local mall at 4:45 AM. This was for the iPhone 6 Plus. By the time I had reached, there was probably at least 80 people in front of me. The line started outside the mall at the entrance closest to the Apple Store and was monitored by security. By the time 10 AM comes, the Apple Store staff say that they are sold out of all iPhone 6 Plus models. At this point, I was probably 30-40 mins from entering the store.

    I would say it isn't worth it to camp out unless you get there super early. The first person in line had gotten there around 7PM the day before. The other problem was that each person in line was buying multiple iPhones and many scalpers had lined up very early. So, I would camp out at your local mall if you are comfortable lining up as early as possible (maybe 6 or 7 PM) the day before. However, this year, you may not even get a jet black 7+ if you aren't one of the first few in the line.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 9, 2016 ---
    The very next day around like 6AM in the morning I was able to reserve a 6 Plus online at another Apple Store. This year, my ship date says Oct 4. So, I am planning on seeing if I can reserve a 7 Plus JB when in-store pick up reopens on the 17th at 8AM and I will cancel my preorder if it is in stock. Apple Stores usually get inventory shipments often so there should be a decent chance you will get a phone of your choice if you are comfortable waiting 1-3 days possibly.
  11. Surfer13134 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 12, 2010
    My local apple store is in the mall and they didnt allow people to line up until 7. They hired extra security and police out there to make sure people wouldn't stay. So I would check with your store and see when they allow line ups.
  12. Hankster macrumors 68020


    Jan 30, 2008
    Washington DC
    Once, when I was dating my now wife. We waited for 12 hours for the iPhone 4S I believe. A few tips:

    1. Always bring a friend or someone with you.
    2. Make friends with the people in line with you. This really helps later on.
    3. If you're near the front, or anywhere, make sure to get everyone in line with you to agree not to allow anyone to cut.
    4. Remember to be friendly to everyone, what comes around goes around.
    6. Don't drink a lot of fluids. The last thing you want is to be running to the bathroom all the time. It's just a several hour wait, deal with it :)
    7. Bring a small chair if you can.
    8. Charge your iPhone and bring a battery brick if you have one.
  13. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    I camped out for the iPhone 4. Bring a chair and appropriate clothing. I was a lot of fun, but I'd never do it again.
  14. nioted macrumors regular

    Sep 14, 2007
  15. cforster macrumors 6502

    Sep 19, 2013
    Missouri USA
    I did for the 5S and 5C launch. It was a mess. That was the first year for the gold iPhone and they had almost NONE in stock anywhere in the world. (The lucky stores received like 1 or 2 that I recall TOTAL, not for each carrier) Every year it is something similar with a particular color.

    I waited in Little Rock, Arkansas and it rained off and on all night. Was absolutely miserable. The Apple Store handed out awesome, well-made umbrellas with the Apple logo though, so that was cool.
  16. zooby, Sep 9, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2017

    zooby thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 2, 2008
  17. angrytoothbrush macrumors regular


    Jun 16, 2009
    I did it in Tampa for the 4S I think, at an apple store. I think I was there 3 hours early was still pretty far back, but I still got one. I have a friend in CA that never has a single problem getting them at ATT stores on launch day.
  18. phpmaven macrumors 68040


    Jun 12, 2009
    San Clemente, CA USA
    Exactly, The first 2-3 people in line will get them and that will be it. Done this several times. The really in demand version will be gone in 60 seconds. As long as you are OK with getting whatever's left by the time they get to you, It's a fun experience.
  19. BeeGood macrumors 68000


    Sep 15, 2013
    Lot 23E. Somewhere in Georgia.
    One more for "bring a chair", and like @lordofthereef said, make sure that you can actually queue up early. I was in Orlando for the 5s and went to a mall at 3:30AM. Security didn't let us line up until 6.

    Not sure I'd try to line up early for a jet black 7+. Maybe the jet black 7 will be available, but if the plus version had almost no availability for pre-order, I doubt very seriously you'll see it in stores on 9/16.
  20. medenblik macrumors regular


    Oct 26, 2014
    I stood in line for the 3GS, 4, 4S...but then for the 5 to now the 7plus. Ordered and have it delivered to my house by 9am

    But I usually went at 3am and doors opened at 8. I was always 2nd to 3rd in line.

    Good times
  21. TheRealAlex macrumors 68000

    Sep 2, 2015

    #1. Don't Go Alone
    #2. If you go Alone Take Some Snack or Chips Gum Etc. to Make friends in Front and Behind You.
    #3. Take Mental Pictures that guy is wearing XYZ many time people sneak in last minute with friends who waited 2 days for them
    #4. Know the Line Stay Single file
    #5. Call the Store you are Camping out at just ask who are the General Manager and Asistant Manager Saying I know Jim in a sticky situation can mean the difference between getting one and not getting an iPhone 7
    #6. Plan For Rain proper clothing gear etc.
    #7. CASH is King You dont have time to Run to an ATM or Bank Take Cash with you. Often Times I phone 4s the Credit Debit all systems went down only people with CASH could buy.
    #8. Plan ahead for Meals Some times Friends or Family Would Bring us Snacks.
    #9. But WetOnes Public toilets Starbucks Target Etc may not have good TP so spend $2.00 and take some good toiletries
    #10. MOST Important Entertainment Headphones are a must iPad Etc.
    #11. Disposeable Cheap Lawn chair I remember I simply folded it up and put it to the side on the street came back the next day it was still there didnt care about it anyways No one did either.

    2 Day Camp outs are Fun anything past that Sucks.

    P.S. The Guy Who Orders 2 Large Pizzas with Sausage And Shared was a super star. Pizza Hut will Deliver to a guy in a Line I learned.
  22. Jetro macrumors regular


    Jan 12, 2016
    I wanted to do the scalper thing once by waiting in line then eBay sell it but decided against it. I'll wait a few months and upgrade maybe.
  23. garyleecn, Sep 9, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2016

    garyleecn macrumors 6502a

    Jul 25, 2014

    * you mean 4:00 am the launch day? no way you are getting what you want, unless it's a very unpopular model. if you want popular models, especially jet black, go there before 4pm
    * i camped twice, both time the popular color (remember, this is just color, not model) were gone for the first like 20 people. they all came before 4pm the day before.
    * you have a wrong definition for 'early' under the circumstance.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 9, 2016 ---
    some other tips,
    * if you have multiple apple stores in your city, go to those in open plazas, not in the malls (of course when weather permits). because many malls won't allow you to use chairs inside, so as soon as they open the door (usually around 6am), you need to stand until leave. plus, in a open plaza, it's easier to go to your car to fetch something (or take a little break).
    * CHARGE your everything. it's going to be a long night. prepare yourself with something to read, or some movies.
    * well, you can certainly pay someone to wait for you, i see a lot of people doing that. or you may ask those in front of the line to buy two, if they only need one, they'd be happy to sell you the other with a little extra.
    * like @TheRealAlex mentioned, MAKE FRIENDS with people in front of you and behind you, people are trying to sneak in all the time. plus, once you know each other, you can leave the line to a little while no problem (say restroom, ATM, food, etc)
  24. THE JUICEMAN macrumors 68020


    Oct 3, 2007
    I did it for the 6+. My biggest tip? Don't do it. Lol seriously though. It was awful. Showed up at midnight and was pretty close to the front after running to the doors once they let us line up outside the mall. It was just too much. Never again. Try to do the reservations starting on 9/17.
  25. cwosigns macrumors 68000


    Jul 8, 2008
    I've queued up for many iPhone launches. I see some of the same people every year. This is the first year in a while I was able to successfully preorder. Here are my tips:

    1. Take a camping chair and layer your clothing, depending on where you live.
    2. Take some self-care necessities like bottled water, snacks, bug spray (again depending on where you live).
    3. If possible don't go alone. If you must, talk and make friends with the people around you. You'll need someone to watch your stuff if you get out of line to use the restroom.
    4. Take a book, iPad, headphones, something to entertain yourself because you're going to be there a while.
    5. Speaking of...I've typically got in line the night before around 8 PM. And most years I was able to get the model I wanted.
    6. The people passing out donuts and bottled water in the wee hours of the morning are Apple Store employees, not the competition trying to poison you and take your place in line. :)
    7. Look for the launch meet-up posts for your area or start one yourself. This will give you a chance to get acquainted with the people you'll be camping out with.
    8. Have fun. Enjoy the vibe. It really is a nice experience.

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