DebConf 2021 bid for Kosovo
?DebConf21 should take place in Kosovo for these reasons:
- Its in Europe
- Cheap prices on anything.
- Venue is big and fulfils the needs of the conference with many auditoriums, hack labs, small rooms, place for bar. With projectors and sound systems.
- Venue is located at the university campus, on the city centre, surrounded with shops, banks, bars and restaurants.
- Multiple large hotels close to the venue.
Most of the participants will not need a visa. Easy to come through Prishtina International Airport.
- Beautiful cities with Albanian, Ottoman and Byzantine architecture.
- Delicious food with cheap price. Traditional and international.
- Most of the people speak English, so interaction is not a problem.
- Sunny weather on July.
- Good music
- Debian supports diversity, let us give a chance to a newly founded state bursting on technology.
Presentation at DebConf19:
Slides of that presantation can be found here
- University campus, we will use two buildings.
- Auditorium with 250 seats.
- Mini-auditorium with 150 seats.
- Three hacklabs.
- Small rooms as many as needed.
- Comforting place to locate the bar.
- We will use the university dorms, with the capacity of 4000 people. Conditions are really good. The price would be around 50Eur per person for the whole 2 weeks.
- Many hotels around the venue, with only 10minutes walk.
Travel and visa
- Direct flights to most of European airports and Istanbul, Turkey.
Most participants will not need a visa. Check here if you need one: visa.
- Taxi companies operating from airport to any city. Cost is around 15Eur. There is the airport bus that goes to Prishtina centre and back every hour and it costs 3 Eur.
FLOSSK(Free Libre Open Source Software Kosova), EnkelenaH, Albiona Hoti, Qendresa Hoti, Diellza Shabani. 'Dardan Shabani (Professor at University of Prishtina). They have participated in previous ?DebConfs, and they have taken notes from the last DebConf and analysed how it was organized. They have everyday contacts with people who have organized DebConf before, and hold really good relations to DebConf attendees. They have organized events before, like medium and small hackathons that lasted around 3 days, BSPs and a MiniDebConf. They hold Toastmasters events with new people every month and have gained skills in organizing tech events. The tech community in Kosovo is in a high level, there are clubs, innovation centres, groups, NGOs that organize events regularly and are quite motivated to help.
In Kosovo there are many cuisine businesses that can offer food everyday for as many people as necessary. Organizers personally know people who offer this, anyway it is something that can get settled in 2 days. The price would be like 3 Euro per person per meal.
There are great restaurants and you can find most types of food, local and international. Literally every spot in Prishtina has food shops with prices like 2-5 Euro per meal.
If we sponsor 200 people, 3 meals*5Eur*50 people(first week)*7 days=5250EUR; + 3 meals * 5EUR * 200 people *7 days = 21000; food total= 26250 ~~27000E.
Transport through the state
Urban bus in Prishtina costs 0.4Eur, taxi costs 1.5Eur per kilometre. Bus to other cities costs from 2Eur to 5Eur maximum. Bus to neighbour countries Albania, Macedonia, Serbia, Montenegro costs 10-15Eur round trip.
- 400000 people live in Prishtina.
- To buy electronics is as easy as ordering a coffee, you just need to know which one you like. Links of main shops:
- Access for handicapped people: On a scale from 1-5, its a 4.
- The main public transport is by BUS. There are Bus stations everywhere you look, which takes you to every city and village, also to other countries in the Balkans or all Europe. Urban transport in the city is 0.4E, to another city up to 4E, to neighbourhood countries up to 10E.
From the main station to the venue it takes 10m.
- Nearest airports
Are there any cheap airlines flying to the chosen city (or nearby)?
Flights from every country of Europe to Kosovo or Macedonia or Tirana will cost around 100 - 300 Euros, it depends on the booking period.
How long does the trip from the airport to the venue take?
From Prishtina airport for 15 min
From Skopje airport for 1.5h by car
From Tirana airport for 3h by bus/car
From Podgorica airport for 5h by bus/car
Language: Do most people speak English? How hard is it for a foreigner to find their way around?
Most people in Prishtina speak English, due to the fact that 40% of the population is from 25 to 54 years old from the demographic data - Kosovo. Including sellers, waiters, police...(official people like in banks, tech services, institutes, etc., have it mandatory to speak English).
Foreigners can easily find their way around as signs are in English too, also most people name their shops or businesses in English.
How much does it cost to rent these facilities? Free
How far away are the locations from each other? (auditoriums, hacklabs, restaurant, sleeping quarters, front desk, orga spaces) Auditoriums are within 100m from each-other, hacklabs and small rooms for BOFs are at the same building as the main auditorium, we have other hacklabs and other smaller rooms at a building across the road. Sleeping quarters are within 250m from the Venue.
How many people fit in each of them?
Main Auditorium has 250 seats, the other one has 150. Rooms fit 50 people. +extra needed auditorium: 300 seats(400m distance)
How flexible are the spaces?
Chairs are fixed in the auditoriums. Rooms can be arranged as we desire, so they are flexible
Is the venue accessible? Note: There are more accessibility issues to bear in mind than just mobility. Is the area safe for people with any kind of disability? (There are sight and hearing-impaired people, too.) Bonus: What people is it not good for? The Venue is fully accessible, it has elevators for those in need. Its structure is in a way that does not badly impact people with sight problems and it is quiet. It has those floors and walls where people can hear their steps
Are plans / blueprints with exact distances available to us (to be kept confidential on request)? We can ask for this when someone from DebConf team visits the place
What kind of audio equipment is already present in the talk rooms? Can the video team take control of the audio equipment in the room?
Can the video team take control of the audio equipment in the room?
Wireless mics are there. Hand held mics. As many as needed. Yes the video team would be able to take full control.
Will the hacklabs be allowed to stay open 24x7? What time schedule do they offer? We need to get permission for this, should not be a problem.
What kind of security will be there? Police will guard us at the venue, at the dorms! Not that there is a need for this, but we will have it!. Also institutional every building has its own security team now.
Are there any limitations regarding the consumptions of food / alcohol? Where do these limitations apply? There are no limitations anywhere, one can drink and eat as much as they want. But we'd be pleased if people did not get drunk on the streets
How far is it to the nearest convenience stores / all-night restaurants? All night open places are within 1km.
Please provide pictures of the venue and accommodation. Please check the slides of our presentation for the venue pics, dorms are already attached.
How much are the meals per person per day? 3 up to 5E
Where will food be served? Is this near the talk rooms / the hacklabs? At the university cafeteria, its not used during the time we will be there. Has the capacity of 1000 people at a time. It is 100 meters from the Venue.
What kind of food will be served? In what fashion? (table service, limited buffet, open buffet, etc.)
In what fashion? (table service, limited buffet, open buffet, etc.)
Mostly Albanian(Kosovan) food, with cooked very delicious vegetables and meat. Can be only vegetables for people who don't consume meat. Open buffet would be the fashion. Will the special meals come from a separate caterer? Yes, the vegan and vegetarian food would be ordered somewhere else. In a two week period, how much variety in food can be provided? Food would be repeated only once, e.g Wednesday we'd have food X as the main course and no other day that course.
- What areas are available nearby for attendees to hack, socially? (e.g. bars, outside tables, swimming pools, coffee shops) What hours will they be open?
Is there conference WiFi coverage in these areas?
There are bars and coffee shops with inside and outside tables, specially during the summer.
WiFi is present literally at every bar and coffee place, 95% of places(house, bar, institute) in Kosovo have internet connection, almost the highest rate in Europe.
Is the area already wired with regular network infrastructure? (much preferably: 1Gbps) It is wired quite well with WiFi also. About the speed we can ask the provider to make it faster if necessary. The provider is a big and well known company, they have great engineers who can understand our requests. This company has a successful tech foundation which sponsors conferences and tech events, they can help with this.
- General conditions for the rooms
Size: size of a normal room
- Have they/do they need air conditioning
We can find rooms with air conditioners to use it, the room where recordings happen does not need air conditioner as it is fresh inside
- What network connectivity is available?
- Lockable? Who has access?
Only people with permission, we lock it.
Where are we expecting to host the front desk? How close is it to other spaces? Is it lockable? it will be hosted inside the venue, so its close to the audotoriums and hacklabs as stated at different places through this document. Yes it is lockable
Is there a small (10 person) room that the orga team can use for meetings and storage?
Is there a small (10 person) room that can be used for private meetings? (e.g. sensitive issues) Yes, we can have this in another building if necessary
How much does it cost per person per night?
50 Euros per person for the whole 2 weeks. So a fixed price for attendee
Is the place where people are going to sleep near the conference facilities?
Is it able to handle an uncertainty in the attendee count, until a month before the conference?
Dorms have the capability of 4000 people, so YES
Is it able to handle the change in attendance from ~20 on the first night to the expected maximum towards the end of the conference?
YES, no problem for that
Is it able to handle foreigners who can't speak the local languages? (i.e. do the people at the accommodation speak English?)
We'd have our own people dealing with that, volunteers so YES.
Are there other hotels around?
Are there rooms ready for handicapped people? How many?
No we do not have special rooms at the dorms
We can hire people for those days who can take care of the kids. We could use one room at the venue and one at the dorms. The price would be 150E per child for 2 weeks
Fun and Free time
Concerts, night clubs, cinema, swimming pool, theatre, hang out in the city centre, big shopping malls, many bars, national park, bear zoo, ancient museums...
List some possible Day Trips
- Sky diving in Peja
- Horse riding
- Visit to the old city of Prizren( castles, hamams, mosques, tourbes, river)
- Hiking in the mountains (Kosovo is known for its high and beautiful mountains with waterfalls and rivers)
- Visit the archaeological city of Ulpiana
- A day at the Batllava lake with boats, park and restaurants
- Religious visits at different cities with guide
The government with their organizations will be a sponsor, they will be sponsoring the venue. Other organizations like will help us with volunteers and financial support
The moment we get a positive sign for DebConf happening here we will directly ask for money and actual supporting, because the proposals need to be very serious and to surely happen.
When (and why) would be the best time to host DebConf at your location? 15 July to 15 August would be the best time
What is your backup plan if your preferred venue isn't available at that time? If by any chance something with the venue or accommodation goes wrong, we would move to the city of Prizren at the German army camp with capability of 2000 people