Dealer’s may not adopt or annex any tables or chairs that have been abandoned.  Violators will be charged by Hargrove for the at show rate for all items the did not pay for.

Items that MAY NOT be sold in the Dealer's Room include:

  • "Knockoff" or bootleg merchandise (for example, Son May CDs).
  • Bootleg videos (this includes bootlegged videos recorded on blank videotapes with printed labels; "homemade" DVDs, pirated copies of any titles that have been released commercially in the United States, Japan, or elsewhere; titles taped off the air in Japan-- and any and all fansubs).
  • Any posters, idol cards, etc., which read "Kodak", "Fuji", etc. on the back.
  • Unlicensed reproductions of any products actually released by an American company.
  • Food, snacks or beverages. Centerplate holds an exclusive catering and concession contract with the WEWCC. Centerplate states that exhibitors may not sell food and compete with their contract. Contact Centerplate to arrange for any exceptions.

Any violation will come with a warning, at which time you will be asked to remove the offending merchandise from the Dealer's Room. The Dealer's Room Coordinators reserves the right to request the removal of any item that he/she believes to be of questionable nature from the dealer's table until its authenticity can be verified.

Failure to comply, or a subsequent violation, is cause for removal from the convention and forfeiture of all fees.

Items that MAY be sold in the Dealer's Room include:

  • Any products featuring your own creations.
  • Any legitimately licensed imported merchandise.
  • Any properly licensed US products.
  • Commissioned and hand-drawn works. *
  • Unique, individual, hand-made items. *
  • Doujinshi, fanzines, and similar items. *
  • Any properly licensed US products.

* We remind you that it is your responsibility to determine whether you are in compliance with various intellectual property laws and statutes.



Adult Materials Policy

Otakon is a family event; therefore we ask that exhibitors, particularly those with adult merchandise, please keep this in mind when setting up. The acceptability of displays of adult material is at the sole discretion of the Dealer's Room Coordinators; failure to comply with warnings may result in removal from the Dealer's Room and forfeiture of all fees.

Any materials that are sexually explicit, extremely graphically violent, or otherwise unsuitable for children MUST be displayed in a manner that keeps kids from seeing them. If we see it out in the open, or receive complaints, we will remind you about our adult materials policy ONCE. If you sell inappropriate materials to minors, we will evict you.



Weapons Sales Policy

Otakorp, Inc. neither condones nor prohibits sales of weapons. However, attendees must comply with the weapons policy posted on our website, which prohibits them from carrying live steel, functional guns, or other dangerous items including nunchaku. If it is illegal in the state of Virginia, the state of Maryland and/or the District of Columbia it is illegal inside the WEWCC. Illegal weapons will be reported to the appropriate authorities. We do ask that dealers selling permitted weapons take extra care in the design and positioning of their displays to ensure there is no mishandling of merchandise. The Dealer's Room Coordinators may require items be removed from sale if there is an apparent danger to attendees, dealers, or merchandise.

Dealers selling ANY type of weaponry must have liability insurance in amounts acceptable to Otakon, Inc. Please be prepared to provide proof of insurance at dealers check in. Failure to provide proof of insurance may result in forfeiture of booth reservations and any and all fees.

Upon selling any weapon, dealers are required to package it securely and advise the purchaser that opening the package within the WEWCC is prohibited and advise individual purchasers at the time of purchase to deposit their purchase in their hotel room or other secure location off the convention premises as soon as possible. Any violation of this rule will be followed by a SINGLE warning.

Upon selling any weapon, dealers are required to package it securely and deliver it to room 158A.  Attendees can retrieve their purchase during Dealer’s Room public.  After retrieving their purchase attendees will be escorted from the building  to deposit their purchases in their hotel room or other secure location off the convention premises as soon as possible.  Vendors are required to take all purchased items to Room 158A themselves.  Otakon staff will not any under any circumstance take of transport any merchandise on behalf of a vendor or attendee. Any violations of this rule will be followed by a SINGLE warning.

Due to changing WEWCC policy all vendors selling weapons will be located in one section of Dealer’s Hall.  This section will be a centralized location.

Any dealer selling weapons is required to print out and post these rules in no less than three visible locations in the booth:

  1. All purchased weapons must be packaged in a box that is securely taped shut at the time of purchase.
  2. Individuals purchasing weapons must be advised by the dealer at the time of purchase to deposit their purchases in their hotel room or other secure location off the convention premises as soon as possible.
  3. You can find the Otakon Weapons Policy on Otakon's website

Airsoft guns may be sold in the Dealer's Room in accordance with applicable laws as well as the following:

  1. All purchased Airsoft guns must be packaged in a box that is securely taped shut at the time of purchase.
  2. Individuals purchasing Airsoft guns must be advised by the dealer at the time of purchase to deposit their purchases in their hotel room or other secure location off the convention premises as soon as possible.
  3. All Airsoft guns must be clearly identifiable by the PAINTED neon orange tip. Taping of the gun tip is not allowed and any offending dealer(s) will receive ONE warning to remove the item(s) in question. Further violation will result in removal from the Dealer's Room and forfeiture of all fees.
  4. No dealer may sell projectiles, ammunition, or air canisters for Airsoft or other gas-powered guns in the Dealer's Room. Violation of this policy may result in expulsion from Otakon and forfeiture of dealer fees.
  5. Any dealer wishing to Airsoft Guns must print out and clearly post the bold faced rules above at no less than three visible locations in the booth including point of sale.
  6. The standard Weapons Sales Policy applies to Airsoft gun sales.


Bootleg/Piracy Policy

Otakorp, Inc. does not allow the sale of bootleg merchandise such as fansubs, Son May CDs, unlicensed wall scrolls or similar items. Some dealers have made it a practice to distribute flyers promoting the sale of such bootleg merchandise at their stores, so that attendees could purchase items not carried at the convention. Others have offered "shuttle" service to their stores for this purpose.

Otakorp, Inc. disallows the advertising of bootleg or knockoff products/services, and "shuttle" service to other locations for the purchase of such products or services. Any violation will come with a single warning, at which time the exhibitor will be asked to remove the offending advertising and/or merchandise. Failure to comply or a subsequent violation may result in removal from the convention and forfeiture of all fees. Conversely, advertising legitimate products and services is both allowed and encouraged.



Policy for Events Requiring Crowd Control

Any event which attracts large crowds or involves audience participation—such as a t-shirt toss, autograph line, the sale of limited-edition tickets, or a giveaway of free items—has special requirements. We request that you notify us well in advance of any plans for such audience participation events. The Dealer's Room Coordinators must be notified at least 12 HOURS before any such event to ensure the coordination of event attendees; we may request that you reschedule for safety reasons. Events may be moved or stopped if there is significant crowding or safety issues.

Furthermore, wholesale distribution of any promotional materials (including but not limited to leaflets, DVD sample disks, catalogs, and coupons) must take place at least twenty feet from the entrances and exits of the Dealer's Room.



District of Columbia Sales Tax Information

District of Columbia Law requires that all dealers charge 6.00% District of Columbia sales tax separate from the amount of the sale. Dealers are required to register and receive a Sales and Use Tax Certificate from the DC Office of Tax and Revenue (OTR) before Otakon. Registration can be done through their website MyTaxDC.gov. On completion you will be mailed a certificate that you must print out and display at Otakon.  Dealers with current District of Columbia Tax IDs may use their current numbers. There is no fee associated with this application.

Otakorp is require to provide the DC OTR's Collection Divison with a list of all vendors and exhibitors along with their addresses, federal employer identification numbers or Social Security numbers, representatives’ names, and telephone numbers. 

Collected sales taxes are due to the DC OTR by the 20th day of the month following Otakon. 

If you have any questions about the District of Columbia's special events tax filing requirements, please contact:

Revenue Officers:
Patricia Richey at (202) 442-6824 or Vincent Flythe at (202) 442-6868
Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:15 am and 4:30 pm.
You may also visit the Office of Tax and Revenue Customer Service Center at:
1101 4th Street, SW 
Suite W270
Washington, DC 20024


Disctrict of Columbia Licensing Information

Out of state vendors who do business three times or less per calendar year in the District of Columbia are not required to obtain a Trader's License. Vendors who fall under this category will need to fill out a copy of the Exhibitor's Affidavit found on the next to last page of the Exhibitor's packet or it can be downloaded separately as pdf following the link below.


Dealers that exhibit more than 3 times a year in the District of Columbia are required to apply for a District of Columbia Trader's License in order to do business at the WEWCC. Trader's Licenses are issued beginning in May of each year and are valid until the end of April of the following year.

Along with the District of Columbia Trader's License application, there is a District of Columbia License Fee based on the projected dollar amount of inventory brought to the convention. Please contact the District of Columbia's Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (dcra.dc.gov) for the latest License Fee table.

District of Columbia dealers may use a photocopy of their present Trader's Licenses and do not need to apply for another one just for Otakon. The Clerk of Courts office does not send out renewal notices, so dealers must re-apply each year for a new Trader's License.

Either a Trader's License or Exhibitor's Affidavit must be presented to the Dealer's Room Coordinators upon your arrival at the WEWCC. These licenses must be displayed at your booth(s) during the convention. NO DEALER WILL BE PERMITTED TO SET UP WITHOUT A District of Columbia TRADER'S LICENSE OR AN EXHIBITOR'S AFFADAVIT.


Dealers with an Exhibitor's Affidavit are required to forward the affidavit back to the Comptroller of the Treasury office within 7 days after conclusion of the event. Please send the affidavit to the following address:


If you have any questions about District of Columbia Trader's Licenses, contact:

DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs
1100 4th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20024 
Phone: (202) 442-4400
Fax: (202) 442-9445
TTY: (202) 123-4567
Email: dcra@dc.gov

Advance Shipping

The WEWCC does not receive packages before the convention. Dealers may wish to ship merchandise ahead of time to the hotels where they are staying or to the decorating company. You must contact the decorating company directly for more information and a schedule of fees. You will be responsible for any and all fees if you take advantage of this service.

Many hotels will accept advance shipments. Contact individual hotels to determine if a hotel accepts advance shipments, and what special instructions must be followed in order for the hotel to receive advance shipments.

You will be responsible for any and all fees if your hotel charges for this service.



Suggested Procedures for Dealers' Protection of Valuables

Otakorp, Inc. will continue its tradition of providing as secure a Dealer's Room as possible. The number of attendees and the venue make it impossible for us to offer bag check in the Dealer's Room, but convention staff will continue to monitor the room during all public hours and provide paid security overnight. Please take extra precautions in the placement of your merchandise and cash to guard against the possibility of theft. Dealers are responsible for their own property, merchandise and money. Otakorp, Inc. and its personnel assume no liability for loss or damage including but not limited to merchandise, equipment, or revenue.



Suggestions for First Time Dealers


  • Try to carry things that people can't find at home.
  • Carry a range of items: some inexpensive and some more expensive items.
  • Bring a handcart to run your goods in from your vehicle. The WEWCC, Hargrove Decorating, and Otakon cannot provide handcarts.
  • Bring a calculator or cash register and change. One and five dollar bills go fast, and Otakorp, Inc. does not supply change.
  • Hand out flyers or mail-order catalogs and/or get an advertisement in the Program Book. It helps people find your store or Web site after the con.
  • Bring a drop cloth to cover your table at night.
  • Hand out receipts for what you sell. It helps security with potential shoplifters.
  • Make cash deposits/drops on a regular basis. Hotels have safe deposit boxes for guests and there are many banks in the downtown DC area.
  • Have at least two people working your booth(s). You'll need to get away from the booth at some point, guaranteed.
  • Bring bottled water. There is no air conditioning during setup, and the exhibit halls tend to get a little hot. While water fountains are available, most people prefer to bring their own supply of water.


  • Don't raise your prices because it's a convention. You'll probably be competing against other dealers for prices.
  • Don't show up and sell only DVD/Blu-rays. Unless you sell at a discount, cons aren't great places to clear out those old discs that weren't moving back home.
  • Don't show up and sell only comics. Especially superhero comics.
  • Don't sell merchandise from your hotel room. It violates District of Columbia state law and the hotels' policies to sell merchandise from your hotel room.
  • Don't sell prohibited merchandise "under the table" or "take orders" for the same that are filled at a later date. If we catch you, we will evict you.




Otakorp Inc.'s Service to Dealers

If there's anything else we can help you with, before or during the con, please let us know. We will do our best to honor all reasonable requests and we hope to meet or exceed all of your expectations. Any concerns should be taken up with the Dealer's Room Coordinator: Ruby Lembach.

Otakorp would like to thank our 2019 Sponsors!

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