As an Austin, Texas blogger and social media and SEO consultant, I enjoy going to various conferences and learning new things about the tech industry. South by Southwest 2017 is March 6-19 in Austin, Texas. South by Southwest is not just a music festival anymore. March 6 is the start of SXSWedu 2017. March 10 SXSW 2017 (interactive, film, and music) begins and March 16 SXSW Gaming starts. Keep reading to get a list of 2017 free SXSW events, parties, and other freebies.
2017 SXSW FREE Swag, Parties, Events, and More
What is SXSW and What Will I Find There?
During South by Southwest you’ll find Brands & Marketing, Design, Development & Code, Government, Health, Intelligent Future, Style, Tech Industry, Workplace, Entertainment Influencers, Film & TV Industry, Making Film & Episodics, Making Music, Music, Industry, Music Influencers, Touring & Live Experience, CLE, Experiential Storytelling, Food, Journalism, Social Impact, Sports, Startup Village, VR/AR. For many of these, you’ll need a SXSW 2017 pass. PLATINUM BADGE for March 10-19, 2017 costs $1650 and you get Primary Access to ALL Events. The INTERACTIVE BADGE March 10-16, 2017 is $1325, FILM BADGE March 10-18, 2017 is $1325, MUSIC BADGE March 13-19, 2017 costs $1325, and SXSWedu BADGE March 6-9, 2017 will set you back $545.
Yes, you’ll get a lot for your money, but if you don’t want to or can’t spend that kind of dough, you’re in luck.
There are lots of free SXSW events, parties, swag, and more for which you don’t need a badge.
Tips for SXSW in Austin, Texas
Park in East Austin on the side streets east of I35 and walk the few blocks or take public transportation. You don’t want to drive at all through downtown during SXSW. It’s loco.
Carry a comfortable backpack with you. You’ll need to a way to carry water, business cards, electronics, and haul all of your awesome free SXSW swag. I bought one of these Lightweight Packable backpacks.
Bring an extra cell phone battery or charger. Yes, there are charging stations, but they are pretty crowded. Check out the discounted portable cell phone battery chargers here.
Be organized. I created an email folder to save all of my eventbrite tickets and other important information. I also use my Google calendar to keep track of everything I signed up for.
For most of the free events, you’ll need an RSVP. These often sell out quickly. Go ahead and RSVP for everything.
FREE SXSW List of Events, Parties, Freebies 2017 + sxsw 2017 rsvps list
Last year, I did not buy a badge, but still took full advantage of all the SXSW interactive freebies. I plan on doing that again this year. Last year, I learned a lot, networked, and got plenty of free SXSW swag, food, and drinks.
I will try to keep this list updated. If anything of these free events are “sold out” or you learn about another cool freebie, please let me know and I’ll add it.
Most of these events are for the SXSWi or South By Southwest Interactive portion. I will try to update the list with free SXSW music festival or film events as well.
If you are interested in which celebrities will be at SXSW 2017, check out the celebrity list here.
2017 SXSW Freebies RSVP List
FREE SXSW GUEST PASS – this is a free credential that gets you into awesome SXSW events including showcases, film screenings, exhibitions, and more throughout SXSW 2017! This includes access to Flatstock, SXSW Job Market, Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake, SXSW Create, SXSW Marketplace, Outdoor Film Screenings: Hype!, Cartoon Network, and Ghost in the Shell, and more.
MAZDA EXPRESS – Free rides. To pick up your Mazda Express wristband, bring your ID to the Mazda Lounge in the Austin Convention Center.
Thursday, March 9 SXSW FREE Events
9th Annual Calm Before the Storm Party 6:30pm at Fogo de Chão 309 E 3rd St
CASA MEXICO SXSW 2017 Mar 9, 2017, 12:00 PM – Mar 12, 2017, 9:00 PM at Mexican American Cultural Center Emma S. Barrientos, 600 River St
Friday, March 10 Free SXSW Events
Social Spredfast Suite March 10-12
FAST COMPANY Grill March 10-13
Brand Innovators in Austin March 10-14 Lambert’s Restaurant
Mashable House March 10-12 610 East 6th Street
2017 Comcast Social Media Lounge Hosted By TechSet March 10 – March 14 Austin Convention Center, Room 19 A/B (4th Floor) – 500 E. Cesar Chavez St. ” Thanks for your registration. We look forward to seeing you in Austin on March 10th! Please note that only badged attendees will be able to access the lounge which is located inside the ACC on the 4th floor.”
RECHARGE OASIS | MORNING YOGA SESSION 9-10am WeWork Congress, 600 Congress 16th floor terrace
HRTech Startup Showcase by ATXHR – March 10 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM
2017 Comcast Social Media Lounge Hosted By TechSet – March 10 – Tuesday, March 14 at Austin Convention Center, Room 19 A/B (4th Floor) – 500 E. Cesar Chavez St., Austin, TX.
OpenShabbat at SXSW 2017 – Enjoy the premiere experience for Jews in tech and digital media at SXSWi!. Friday, March 10 at 7:30 PM – 11:59 PM at Hilton Austin
500 East 4th Street.
HRTech Startup Showcase by ATXHR 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM
ATX WILDFIRE BLOCK PARTY (Day One) 7pm -2am Kick Butt Coffee & Booze – 5775 Airport Blvd – Austin, TX 78752
SPROUT BY SOUTHWEST (SXSW) by Sprout Realty 6-10pm 1706 East 6th Street
Hardware House 6pm WeWork Congress – 600 Congress Avenue Austin, TX
feedfeed Influencer Marketing Meetup 4-6pm The Driskill – Jim Hogg Parlor 604 Brazos Street
Saturday, March 11 South By Southwest Freebies
UnifyID Silent Disco Brunch 11:00AM to 2:00PM – not free unless someone knows the promo code?
Beat The SXSW Rush with Drink and Click™ Austin, Texas Event with Olympus 6-10pm at Spider House Ballroom 2906 Fruth Street
2017 Filmmakers’ Brunch by Austin Gay & Lesbian International Film Festival Board 11am- 1pm The Iron Bear 121 West 8th Street
6TH ANNUAL METAL MONSTERS OF TEXAS 2pm – 10am Grizzly Hall, 2015 E Riverside Dr, Austin, TX 78741, USA
DO512 EPIC! INTERACTIVE 6pm -10pm
Intro to the Austin Startup Scene & Ask Me Anything with Joshua Baer & Amos… by Capital Factory 4-6pm + Happy Hour 6-7pm Capital Factory 701 Brazos Street 1600
Quintessential Naturals… SXSW Edition by Natural Partners In Crime 1-5pm George Washington Carver Museum 1165 Angelina Street
Bazaar Voice at SXSW 10am – 7:30pm 213 W 4th
Third Annual Open Door #SXSW [Unofficial] Showcase Sat, Mar 11, 2017, 7:00 PM – Sun, Mar 12, 2017, 1:45 AM Javelina
69 Rainey Street
The Customer Social 2pm to 6pm Moonshine Grill 303 Red River St
Startup Lunch: The Wireless Meetup by Mobile Future & Tech.Co 12-2 Maggie Mae’s 323 East 6th Street
When Where What Presents: SXSFlames 12-4 at Austin Daily Press 1900 E MLK
Schwab’s Saturday Reboot Breakfast Lounge @SXSW by Schwab TechTalks @ Charles Schwab 9a-12pm, free breakfast at SXSW
MDC Partners Pool Party @ SXSW 2017 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM W HOTEL WET Deck 200 Lavaca Street
Taco ‘Bout It Brought to you by WP Engine and the Webby Awards 9:00 am – 11:00 am MAX’S Wine Dive 207 San Jacinto Blvd, Austin
DRUPAL DROP IN @ SXSW Fogo de Chao – Rooftop Patio Saturday March 11, 2017 – 11:00am-2:00pm
Fireside Breakfast Margaritas with NOMAD at SXSW 11am-1pm South Congress
SXSW Retail Innovation Lab 3/11 – 3/13, 12pm -10pm Shopgate, Inc. – 804 Congress Avenue Ste. 200
Sunday, March 12 Free Stuff at SXSW
SXSW Whiskey & Doughnut Tasting 5 PM – 7 PM at Voodoo Doughnut Austin 212 E 6th St
Amazon seller & Alexa enthusiast SXSW Hangover Brunch with Agent Zebra & Mastermind 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM at Russia House 307 E 5th St
Create Cultivate 9:00am – 8:30pm 1102 EAST CESAR CHAVEZ ST.
Decoded – SXSW 2017 (Fashion) 9:30 AM – 8 PM at Hanger Lounge 318 Colorado
ADAPTIVE COMMERCE & COCKTAILS WITH CURALATE | Decoded Fashion House 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/adaptive-commerce-cocktails-with-curalate-decoded-fashion-house-sxsw-2017-tickets-31837623188?aff=es2 at Hangar Lounge 318 Colorado St
Health Tech Happy Hour 5:30 PM – 8:30 PM at Wu Chow500 West 5th Street #168
The Second Annual S’mores Under the Stars with BakeSpace.com 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Souped Up Sunday at Quickie Pickie by Brooklyn Brewery 2-5pm Quickie Pickie 2027 East Cesar Chavez Street
SNAP HOUSE Cookout 12:00PM
Tech.Co’s Startup Night 7:00 PM – 11:30 PM at Maggie Mae’s 323 East 6th Street
MashBash 9:00 PM – 2:30 AM at Mashable House 610 East 6th Street
SMART CITIES DAY 11am-4pm Choose San Antonio House (aka Half Step Bar) 75 1/2 Rainey St
The Inclusive Innovation House by CUEED & Usable Tech Co.
12:00 PM – 8:00 PM at Galvanize 118 Nueces Street Level 2
Hometown Hungover Cure 12 PM – 5 PM CDT at Rattle Inn 610 Nueces Street
Samuel Adams Pop-Up Pitch Room 3:00 PM – 5:30 PM at Whole Foods Market 525 N Lamar Blvd
CLOSING PARTY WITH SHOPGATE | Decoded Fashion 6 -8pm Hangar Lounge 318 Colorado St
IEEE TECH FOR HUMANITY OFFICIAL SXSW PARTY 2017 7-10pm The Driskill 604 Brazos Street
LaunchKC Outpost at SXSW 2017 11am -8pm Maggie Mae’s 323 East 6th Street
ProductTank Drinks – SXSW Edition (6th Annual) by Mind the Product 12-5pm Little Woodrow’s 520 West 6th Street
Sunset Party @ the Sprinklr Sanctuary 6-10pm
feedfeed SXSW Party 6-9pm backbeat – 1300 S Lamar Blvd
Monday, March 13 Free Events
SXSW Women in Digital Meet Up 4:30 PM – 7:00 PM at The Peached Social House 6500 North Lamar Boulevard
Burgers & Bubbles: Digital Media Women 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM at Downtown Burgers across from the convention center 503 E Cesar Chavez St
A.V. Club and The Onion Present: Just Another Manic Monday 3:30 PM – 12 AM at Mohawk Austin 912 Red River St
SoDA 2017 Austin Happy Hour 5-8pm Dogwood Austin 715 W 6th St (waitlist)
Amplify VIP Event 9pm – 2am MUSIC FROM DJ JAZZY JEFF DJ ROYALE & DJ AKTIVE OPEN BAR & BUFFET at Old School Bar and Grill 401 E. 6th
PANDORA AT SXSW 2017 March 13-16
STRANGE BREW 6 1-6pm HOTEL VEGAS, 1502 E 6th St, Austin, TX 78702, USA
Immersed in Northern Ireland at South by Southwest (SXSW) 3 -5pm
SXSW Women in Digital Meet Up 4:30-7 The Peached Social House – 6500 North Lamar Boulevard – Austin, TX 78752
SXSW17: FTR4H Digital Health Reception 4-5pm German Pavilion – WUNDERBAR – SXSW Trade Show @ Austin Convention Center – 500 E Cesar Chavez Street – Austin, TX 78701
eBay and Gimlet Creative Present Open for Business Bootcamp 12pm-4:30 pm CB’s at Stubb’s 801 Red River St. Entrance on corner of 9th & Red River
Mighty Texas All Star Showcase by Lit Lounge Austin Mon, Mar 13, 2017, 6:00 PM –Tue, Mar 14, 2017, 2:00 AM 215 E. 6th
Tuesday, March 14 Free SXSW 2017 Events
Austin Open Coffee Club 9:00 AM – 10:45 AM Atlassian 303 Colorado Street #1600
CI&T Presents Agile Carnival at SXSW 2017 9am – 7:30pm Courtyard Marriott (Rio Grande & Brazos Room) – 300 E 4th St – Austin, TX 78701
THE AUSTIN SHOWCASE Presented by Balanced Breakfast During SxSW 12-6pm The Jackalope – 404 East 6th – Austin, TX 78701
Austrian Day @SxSW17 9:30am – 11pm Barracuda Club Austin – 611 East 7th Street – Austin, TX 78701
Independence & Lagunitas Present Austin BugOut by The Lagunitas Brewing Company 12-5pm The Historic Scoot Inn 1308 East 4th St.
Tuesday Night Live 7pm-9pm The Studio MK – 2500 W William Cannon Drive – Suite 604 – Austin, Texas 78745
Barnes & Thornburg LLP – SXSW Interactive 2017 12:30-2:30 JW Marriott Austin & Corner Bar 110 E. 2nd Street