Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions about staying on campus, competition, dining at World Finals, and more? This page offers tons of information to guide you during your experience at World Finals. If you can’t find the answer you need, email!

World Finals Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the best resource for information about Odyssey of the Mind World Finals for participating teams?

The World Finals packet has information about the University, local attractions, housing, prop shipping and more.
I’ve heard a lot about pin trading, what is it?

Odyssey of the Mind Associations offer team members pins to trade while at World Finals. Pin trading is a great way to meet new friends from all over the world and to create a collection to help you remember your World Finals experience the rest of your life.
Can parents, siblings and others stay in housing with the team members and coaches?

Yes! Parents are encouraged to stay with teams in the dorms. While filling out your Team Housing Registration simply add anyone wishing to stay in the dorms in the allotted space. The price is the same.
What is the cost to stay on campus?

Wednesday arrival package will be $650 per person.
Tuesday arrival package will be $735 per person. This includes room, meals, shuttles around campus, access to all events and the registration fee. If choosing to say off campus, the fee is $3000 if registering within two weeks of your tournament. This fee includes everything mentioned above other than room and meals.
Can we select different housing packages?

Yes, your team is allowed to mix housing packages.
Is there a discount for young children?

Yes! Children 2 and under do not need to be included on your housing form. Since most twin beds are bunk-style, a pack and play is recommended.
How long can we stay on campus?

You can select from two housing and meals packages—arriving on Tuesday or Wednesday, with both checking out Sunday by noon.
Do we have to pay a registration fee? And how much does it cost?

If your team selects housing packages equal to the number of team members plus one coach (no matter who uses the packages, i.e. siblings, parents, other supporters), the fee is already included in the cost. If staying off-campus, the fee is $3000 if the team's registration is submitted within two weeks of your associations’ competition date and $3500 if it is submitted after that date.
What if part of the team wishes to stay off campus and part on campus? How much is the registration fee per person?
The registration fee is per team, not per person. However, as long as the number of housing packages purchased equals the number of team members plus one coach, there is no further cost as the registration fee is included in the housing packages. If there is less than that number purchased, the registration fee is not considered paid and the team will have to pay the fee or purchase the number of housing packages needed. Anyone can use those packages, i.e. parents, siblings, supporters. For example, if there are 7 team members, the housing packages purchased should equal 8; if the number of team members is 5, the housing packages purchased should be 6 (all team members + 1 coach).
What is the payment deadline?

All payments must be made by April 26.
How do we get to campus from the airport? Do you provide a shuttle? UPDATED 4/4

Detroit Metro Airport:
Airport bus transportation between Detroit Metro (DTW) and Michigan State University will be available with Michigan Flyer’s regularly scheduled service. Round trip shuttle service is available for purchase here:
Michigan Flyer Shuttles Participants should book directly on the Michigan Flyer website. There are 9 departures to and from the Detroit Airport. Shuttles will drop off regular passengers /OM Officials in East Lansing at the Marriott and OM Teams will then be dropped at the International Center for team registration and will take a campus bus to their assigned dorm.
Participants traveling back to the Detroit Airport will take a campus bus back to the Marriott in East Lansing to board the Michigan Flyer shuttle.
The cost per person is $27.00 one way or $42.00 round trip for two or more people traveling together. (Child rates are not applicable during this time)
You can download a flier of full information found in the "Know Before You Go" section entitled Getting To Campus. Know Before You Go
Where is team registration?

All coaches must register their teams at the International Center. Maps and written directions will be included in the Arrival tab of the "During World Finals"section for your reference.
What are the hours for Team Registration?

Team registration is open at the International Center on Tuesday from 2 PM until Midnight and Wednesday from 10am until Midnight. Team registration will also be available on Thursday at Odyssey Information located at the International Center/Crossroads.
What do we do if we arrive on campus after registration closes for the day?

For those arriving after registration hours on Tuesday or Wednesday, please stop at the International Center. Michigan State University staff will run a 24-hour check-in service if you arrive after midnight when the Odyssey desk is closed, you will call 517-648-2364 and the person will direct you to your assigned residence hall. You will complete the rest of the check-in process the next day during regular registration hours. If you arrive on Thursday or later, please check in at the Odyssey Information Booth at the International Center.
Are the dorms air-conditioned?

Some residence halls have air-conditioning; however, we cannot guarantee air-conditioned lodging in advance. The average temperature this time of year is between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Check the weather forecast to make sure you pack the right clothes!
Is there any place I can connect to the Internet when I’m on campus?

Guest users can connect to MSUNet Wireless Guest or MSUNet Wireless Guest 3.0 networks and agree to MSU’s Statement of Acceptable Use to gain bandwidth limited network access. To connect to one of these networks, follow the instructions provided by your OS or device to select and associate with “MSUNet Wireless Guest” or “MSUNet Wireless Guest 3.0” SSIDs. Once you are connected, open your web browser and load a non-SSL site ( for example). Your browser will redirect you to a page that asks you to agree to MSU’s Statement of Acceptable Use and other terms of use. Once you have read and agreed to the terms, simply click the “I Agree” button. More details can be found at:Know Before You Go/Letter to Coaches
Can special dietary needs and/or food allergies be accommodated at the dining halls?

Yes. Most of our dining centers are able to accommodate individuals with these allergens: dairy, egg, fish, shellfish, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, and soy. When registering, if anyone in your group has food allergies, please list the member’s full name, contact telephone number, email address and list the allergens (see above list) for the medically-required dietary needs on the Lodging & Meals reservation. You can also contact Kelsey Patterson via email dietitians@ or phone (517) 884-7027, with the team members’ information and accommodation needs in advance of their arrival. If you are requesting Halal or Kosher diets, please complete the form using the same process as above. Those who are unable to self-manage their special dietary needs, such as Celiac Disease, will be assigned to a specific dining area. Many other dietary needs or preferences (such as for those who are diabetic, vegetarians, etc.) can be accommodated simply by choosing appropriately from the wide variety of choices that will be available at each meal. These types of needs should not be listed on the Lodging and Meals reservation.
Can parents staying off campus eat in the same dining hall as the team?

Of course! Individual guest meals can be purchased at the entrance of the dining centers with credit only.
What kind of meals can we expect in the dining center?

You will be assigned to a specific dining center for your meals. All persons who have purchased Odyssey of the Mind housing or meal packages will be issued a color-coded wristband allowing them into the appropriate dining center. Meals typically include a selection of entrees, hot and cold side dishes, salad bar, fresh fruits and vegetables, and a variety of deserts and beverages. University Dining may choose to substitute some meals as pick-up-and-go meals when appropriate (notices to be shared at arrival).
What time are the dining halls open? What is the cost for meals for those not staying on campus?

Tuesday dinner through Sunday breakfast:
Breakfast: 6:30 AM to 9:00 PM $8.50 + tax
Lunch: 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM $13.50 + tax
Dinner: 4:30 PM to 7:00 PM $13.50 + tax
Our team is arriving after the dining halls close; however, the package we purchased includes dinner that day. Will dinner be provided?

If you plan to arrive after the scheduled dinner hours, we encourage you to make plans to eat prior to arriving or explore the many great dining options available to you in the community.
What is the penalty if we cancel our housing reservation?

There is no penalty if you cancel your reservation by April 26. Cancellations after April 26 are subject to a 50% penalty. Unfortunately no refunds can be given after May 5 as your room has been booked.
Can we make changes to our housing reservations if we reserve our space now?

Absolutely! Please enter your information as quickly as possible. You can modify your housing reservations through April 26.
What types of rooms are used for housing?

Your team will get the actual experience of living like college students! Teams will be housed in traditional style residence hall housing (the majority in double-occupancy rooms), with additional placements in triples, if available. When completing your Lodging/Meals Reservation, please indicate only medically-required housing and dining needs that may affect placement.
Will a team member be housed with someone he/she does not know or with another adult?

In order to accommodate all teams it will be necessary to assign one person to every available bed. This means that if a team has 9 persons assigned to rooms with a total of 10 beds, there may be a person from another team of the same gender and similar age assigned to the remaining space. An adult will not be assigned to a room with a team member unless requested on the housing form.
Will males and females be housed together in the same residence hall?

Males and females may be assigned within the same residence hall room if requested. Males and females may be assigned within the same suite or apartment, but not within the same sleeping room unless requested.
Will I be provided linens?

Yes! In an effort to make your stay easier each person will be provided with a pillow, pillowcase, sheets, blanket, 2 towels, 1 washcloth and soap. Daily towel exchanges will be available at a centralized location. Feel free to bring your favorite pillow or blanket if you wish.
Are laundry facilities available?

Yes, laundry facilities are available within the residence areas.
When will we know where we’re staying?

When you get to campus and register for your housing you will receive your housing assignment.
Who will I room with?

When you fill out your Lodging and Meals Reservation you can request your roommate. We will do our best to accommodate you.
What if I lose the key card to my room?

Be sure to keep track of your keys!
At check in, you will receive an envelope with all your keys, use this as a handy resource to gather them all to turn in at check out. Keys must be returned at check-out; charges will be assessed for unreturned keys (up to $100). If lost keys are found, turn them in to one of the 24- hour residence hall desks or to the Odyssey information desk.
Can anyone enter the residence halls?

Only university staff and Odyssey of the Mind teams and coaches assigned to the residence will have keys to the residence areas. Participants are not allowed in Department of Residence areas that are not assigned to their group unless accompanied by a responsible host registered for that area. If you have guests you must behave appropriately and respect the other teams. Unruly behavior should be reported to the resident assistant, University staff, or Odyssey Information promptly. A 24-hour Conference Desk will be located in each residence area.
Our team would like to stay in a hotel. Will you help us with those arrangements?

The Convention and Visitors Bureau can assist you with a list of nearby hotels.
Can teams staying off campus use the recreational facilities?

Yes, the registration fee covers all of the events and recreation opportunities at World Finals. Team members and adults staying on campus are permitted to participate in recreational activities at listed University facilities. Team members must provide the medical release form found here: Know Before You Go/Final Checklist & Forms to participate in any recreational activities. Towels, racquets, basketballs, etc. may be checked out at the recreation centers.
Who can attend the competitions and ceremonies on campus and how much are the tickets?

Everyone is welcome to attend and the event is free to the public. For the Opening and Awards Ceremonies you need a ticket to enter. Participating teams will get their tickets when they sign in at the Odyssey of the Mind registration desk. Spectators who are not staying in Odyssey housing may pick up their complimentary tickets on the day of the event at the Odyssey Information Booth or at the Arena Box Office the evening of the event. [Only one ticket per person will be distributed. This helps prevent over-distribution of tickets by giving mass quantities to more than one person from the same group.] You must sit in the seat designated on the ticket.
Will I need a vehicle to get around campus?
There will be a free shuttle service throughout the competition connecting the residence halls, central campus, and the competition sites. Learn more about shuttles in Know Before You Go/Getting To Campus and During WF/ Getting Around Campus.
Do drivers need a parking permit?

There is some limited parking among other options: Ramp 7/Lot 16, Lot 15, Lot 83, Lot 89 and Lot 91 will be complimentary May 23–28, 2023. See more about parking here. Parking enforcement is in effect. Vehicles illegally parked (e.g. in permit parking spaces, parking on hash marks, in a University vehicle or lease space, outside a space, along a curb, in the grass, obstructing traffic, in a drive lane, in a space requiring a valid disability placard or plate) are subject to enforcement. Should you have a parking question, contact the MSU Parking Office at 517-355-8440.
Can I get a handicapped parking permit?

Those who present their valid disability placard or disability plate, current vehicle registration and driver’s license at the MSU Parking Office may purchase a permit valid for employee space parking in ungated employee lots (at residence halls and some buildings on campus). The person to whom the placard or plate is issued must be present at the Parking Office to obtain the permit. The permit is $20.00. The permit may be purchased between 8am-4pm, M-F, at the MSU Parking Office located at 1120 Red Cedar Road in the Public Safety Building/MSU Police Department. The permits are not valid at meters, lease spaces or University vehicle spaces. A disability space requires a valid disability placard and/or disability plate.
We would like to drive our RV to campus. May we park on campus?

Individuals are not permitted to stay in RVs and Campers on campus.
We are chartering a bus to get to campus. Where do I tell the driver to park?

There will be an assigned lot, noted on the map located here: Coming Soon
When can we check on our props? If we are driving our props to campus, where do we deliver them?

Prop storage locations will be open to team use beginning Tuesday, May 23, from 10:00am until 11:00pm that night. Additional prop storage hours

Wednesday, May 24, and Thursday, May 25, from 7:00am – 11:00pm
Friday, May 26 from 6:00am – 11:00pm
Saturday, May 27, from 6:00am – 30 minutes after the last competition.

Prop packing, shipping, and tracking guidelines from MSU Logistics
How do we arrange to ship our props home?

Teams who wish to ship materials home must register such request with the the Prop Information booth for proper guidance.
What if I have questions about Michigan State University or East Lansing?

If you need general information prior to arrival, please go to or call 1-888-2-Lansing. For information after arriving on campus, stay up to date using the World Finals app, check in at the information desks at International Center, or stop by the residence hall conference desks where you are staying.
When will the competition schedule be available?

The final competition schedule is now available!
How do I contact my child once the team arrives on campus?

Most cell phones work on campus and in the residence halls. Prior to leaving home, be sure to leave a list of all team members and chaperones and any cell phone numbers with family members. Distribute a list of cell phone numbers to all your team members. Note that the East Lansing area code is 517. Team members should call home and give family members their residence hall name and room number. During WF, parents or family members may call in an emergency to contact their son or daughter. The phone number, (517) 355-1855 will be answered 24 hours a day. This is the campus operator. They have instructions on how to forward your call. It is important that you mention you are looking for someone with the Odyssey of the Mind Competition. Please remember this is for emergency use only.
Is there a health center on campus in the event of an emergency?

Yes, there is an extensive list of Health Services and a required medical release form in the WF packet found in the "Know Before You Go" section. Emergency telephones (“Green Phones”) are located near the center of each residence hall floor.
Will any of the events be broadcast online?

Opening Ceremonies, the Graduation Ceremony and the Awards Ceremony will be broadcast as a live webcast during the event. Stay tuned to the World Finals website and our social media for updates and broadcasts. The footage will also be posted shortly after the ceremony on the World Finals media page.
Who is eligible to participate in the graduation ceremony?

High School and College students missing their graduations because they are attending the Odyssey of the Mind World Finals are invited to participate in the graduation ceremony. Due to time and space restrictions, we cannot invite all students to participate. To participate in the graduation ceremony, please sign up before April 26. Graduates are encouraged to wear caps and gowns for this ceremony. However, everyone is encouraged to attend the event in order to support their fellow participants and see Dr. Sam and OMER!
When will we see the team's scores on the website?

The team's scores will be available on the immediately after the Awards Ceremony ends on Saturday evening.
What is OMER'S News and where can I find it?

OMER’s News is the daily Odyssey of the Mind World Finals Newsletter. The first edition is available when you arrive on campus and new editions are digital only and will be posted on our web app and website each day of the event.
How do I get around campus? Are there shuttles while on campus?
Yes, there is a free shuttle open to all participants and guests. During the competition CATA bus service will be available on campus. CATA bus service will run about every 10-15 minutes, picking up at CATA bus stops that will have a bus stop Flutter flag and an A-frame sign with route information on it. Since parking is very limited on campus, we highly encourage teams and spectators to utilize the shuttle whenever possible.