Wikimania 2016 bids/Esino Lario/Participants

Expected number of participants


We expect 700 participants at Wikimania Esino Lario and the event is designed for 1'000. At the moment, the events which have reached a larger number of participants have been Wikimania in English-speaking cities, including also daily registrations and occasional attendees. Having an event in English in a non English speaking countries has a specific impact on daily registrations and occasional attendees; we expect some people to pass-by (around 100 people who have a house in Esino Lario and 100 people for Milan area coming for the day), but Esino Lario is not a large city and – for how our event is conceived – the emphasis is on the people staying for the entire event and we are not focusing on occasional pass-by attendees.

Group photo at Wikimania Haifa.
Group photo at Wikimania Hong Kong.

A larger outreach program is designed through communication and with a specific series of presentations, meetings and training in Italian before and after the event; Wikimania is a great chance to provide visibility to the Wikimedia projects, but not all events and initaitves needs to take place during the conference week. Our plan is to take advantage of the Wikimania momentum to involve the territory and to reinforce the activities of Wikimedia Italia and Wikimedia CH.

It can be relevant to note that the planning of Wikimania Esino Lario has already allowed to establish links with Expo Milan 2015 (in the first months of planning we were considering organizing the event in 2015), and we had already meetings with provincial and regional public administrators, and with institutions and companies. We expect the implementation of the event to take full advantage of these contacts to foster communication of the Wikimedia projects and the implementation of the "before and after the event" program.

Hypothesis participants


See also Wikimania/Target.

Hypothesis number of participants
Estimated participants Number Lunch Accommodation in Esino Lario Accommodation Varenna (higher level 4 and 5 stars) Pendular Number of rides by bus if nobody among the pendular has a car Possible car (and parking spots)
Organizers Wikimedia 100 100 100 Possible car 20
Organizers Esino Lario 100 50 House in Esino Possible car 20
Organizers Extra 30 30 30 Possible car 6
Organizers from the territory 50 50 House in the area 50 Possible car 10
Attendees from Italy 50 50 40 10 10 Possible car 10
Wikimedia Chapters (board and staff) 100 100 100
Wikimedia Foundation (board, committee and staff) 100 100 77 23 23
Scholarships 250 250 250
Attendees from abroad (Europe + North America and Oceania). Including journalists. 80 80 70 10 10 Possible car
Researchers from Europe and US 40 40 30 10 10
Occasional visitors from Esino (conference days) 100 House in Esino Possible car 20
Occasional visitors (conference days) - Including journalists from Milan and the territory, stakeholders 150 150 For the day 150 Possible car 30
Total 1.150 1.000 697 53 253 7 116
Hypothesis main interest of the participants

This hypothesis is only meant to have some references to plan flows (in participants possible numbers for pre-conference, conference and post-conference).

Estimated interests Description Number Percentage
Organizers (not included international) Wikimedia, Esino Lario, Extra and from the territory 280 24%
Politics (board, staff, commitee) Wikimedia Foundation, chapters and 30% of the scholarships 275 24%
Active contributors Half of the attendees from Italy and from Europe and US; half of the scholarships 190 17%
General - potential newbies Half of the attendees from Italy and from Europe and US; 20% of the scholarships; occasional visitors 365 32%
Researchers 40 3%
Total 1.150 100%
Hypothesis provenance of the participants

This hypothesis is only meant to have some references to plan transport, visa and flows (in participants possible numbers for pre-conference, conference and post-conference). This hypothesis is based on the numbers above (with the assumption that participants in an event in Italy might be more numerous from Italy and Europe) and it is based on the estimates below (related to Wikimedia Chapters and scholarships).

Estimated location of arrival and departure Number Percentage
Varenna (probably trains from CH, DE) 61 11%
Airport Orio al Serio 61 11%
Airport Linate 61 11%
Airport Malpensa 388 68%
Total 570 100%
Estimated provenance (necessary to plan transport) Number Percentage Total of non local Percentage of non local
Local 580 50%
Europe 242,5 21% 242,5 43%
North America and Oceania 190 17% 190 33%
South America 47,5 4% 47,5 8%
Africa 30 3% 30 5%
Asia 60 5% 60 11%
Total 1150 100% 570 100%
Visa requirements 137,5 11,96%
Wikimedia Chapters (board, staff, further scholarships) - Excluding Italy Number Percentage
Europe 70 70%
North America and Oceania 5 5%
South America 10 10%
Africa 5 5%
Asia 10 10%
Total 100 100%
Scholarships Number Percentage
Europe 112,5 45%
North America 25 10%
South America 37,5 15%
Africa 25 10%
Asia 50 20%
Total 250 100%



All participants have been to be registered. Registrations allowed us to collect information about the participants before the event, to manage special needs (food, accommodation), to provide all participants with a personal insurance and to count the participants.
We organized registration in a series of tickets including lunches, dinner and accommodation.

For the on-site registration was managed at the Ex-Albergo Italia in Piazza Italia.

The on site registration process


On site registration for Wikimania Esino Lario was specifically challenging since it included for 440 beds also the check in for the accommodation and the copy of documents requested by the Italian law for all accommodation.


dark blue - no visa required, Schengen area; light blue - no visa required, special territories of Schengen member states; dark green - no visa required (annex II), red - visa required (annex I); brown - visa required (annex I), transit visa required; pink - passport not recognized; gray - no information.
See also the official visa map

Italy is part of the Schengen area, which has a uniform visa policy:[1] requirements can be strict but most Wikimania attendees will need no visa, or enjoy visa facilitation. Rejection rate for Schengen short-stay visa is is less than 5 % and as little as 1 % for many countries:[2] EU and Italy have good relations with almost all the countries in the world; in particular for Italy Middle East, Northern Africa and the Balkans, all countries quite poorly "served" by Wikimanias after Alexandria 2008.[3]

Citizens of 73 countries will not need to worry about visa, making Wikimania Esino Lario the second most internationals-friendly Wikimania ever![4] You can easily check the requirements for your country, if any, with the Ministry's Do you need a visa? tool.

Free access (Schengen area)

  1. Austria
  2. Belgium
  3. Czech republic
  4. Denmark
  5. Estonia
  6. Finland
  7. France
  8. Germany
  9. Greece
  10. Hungary
  11. Iceland
  12. Italy
  13. Latvia
  14. Lithuania
  15. Luxembourg
  16. Malta
  17. Netherlands
  18. Norway
  19. Poland
  20. Portugal
  21. Slovakia
  22. Slovenia
  23. Spain
  24. Sweden
  25. Switzerland
  26. Liechtenstein

European Union free movement (non-Schengen countries)

  1. Bulgaria
  2. Croatia
  3. Cyprus
  4. French territories of French Guyana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Réunion, Mayotte, Saint Barthélemy and Saint Martin
  5. Ireland
  6. Romania
  7. United Kingdom

Visa free

  1. Albania (+visa facilitations)
  2. Argentina
  3. Australia
  4. Bahamas
  5. Barbados
  6. Bosnia and Herzegovina (+visa facilitations)
  7. Brazil
  8. Brunei Darussalam
  9. Canada
  10. Chile
  11. Costa Rica
  12. Colombia
  13. El Salvador
  14. Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (+visa facilitations)
  15. Guatemala
  16. Honduras
  17. Hong Kong SAR
  18. Israel
  19. Japan
  20. Mexico
  21. Macao SAR
  22. Malaysia
  23. Nicaragua
  24. New Zealand
  25. Panama
  26. Paraguay
  27. Republic of Korea (South Korea)
  28. Saint Kitts and Nevis
  29. Serbia (+visa facilitations)
  30. Seychelles
  31. Singapore
  32. Taiwan
  33. United Arab Emirates
  34. United States of America
  35. Venezuela

Visa facilitations

  1. Armenia
  2. Cape Verde
  3. Georgia
  4. Moldova
  5. Montenegro
  6. Russia
  7. Ukraine

Managing visa

Visa is managed in Italy, and/or in Switzerland where needed.

Visa procedures for Wikimania Esino Lario attendees will be managed by the staff of Wikimedia Italia. The staff has previous experience in managing visa requests for the Wikimedia Conference organized in 2013 in Milan; for this event the majority of the visa procedures were successfully managed; difficulties emerged for participants coming from the Philippines and Indonesia[5]. To make sure all participants can apply for visa with the necessary support we set a proper timeline and the partnerships with Wikimedia CH will allow us to relay also on another country' procedures for visa requests, in case Italy presents a more difficult situation.

Excursions in Switzerland


For participants coming from outside the Schengen area, to be able to make an excursion in Switzerland it is necessary that the visa is "Valid for Schengen area" (not a visa valid only for Italy)[6]. Please make sure to specify it when you make the visa request.

Cost for participants


The concept of Wikimania Esino Lario is that attending the talks, the discussions and all the events is free of charge. Nevertheless we had to create a cheap flat rate (we set 20 euro for 1-3 days and 35 euro for 5 days) necessary to register the participants in order to manage issues related to insurance for civil liability, connectivity and safety and security; we included in the rate the t-shirt, the programme and for the 5 days the welcome bag.

Compared to the initial estimated costs, we decided to increase the quota for the accommodation to allow us to manage all together the beds available in Esino Lario (in apartments, dorms and hotel). Differently from other Wikimania, we created a registration cost which also includes dinner, to allow scholarship recipients to have all costs covered; the cost of dinner and such was increased in May 2015 according to the suggestions provided by Ellie Young and Garfield Byrd during the Wikimedia Foundation site-visit. We separated the transport from and to the airport to allow people to select it or not and we have calculated the registration also by including the cost of the t-shirts and welcome beg.

Scholarships and guests


International scholarships


International scholarships will be managed as usual by the Scholarship Committee and the WMF. We have drafted a proposal to contribute to the brainstorming on how to improve the scholarship system for Wikimania.

Italian volunteers and guests

Expense Number Days Cost/Unit Total in euro Total in dollars
Insurence for the volunteers 200 € 10,00 € 2.000,00 $ 2.744,98
Travel expenses volunteers 50 € 50,00 € 2.500,00 $ 3.431,23
Travel expenses volunteers 50 € 100,00 € 5.000,00 $ 6.862,45
Accommodation and food 50 9 € 50,00 € 22.500,00 $ 30.881,03
Accommodation and food 50 5 € 50,00 € 12.500,00 $ 17.156,13
Lunch for volunteer resident 50 8 € 10,00 € 4.000,00 $ 5.489,96
Lunch for guests (companies, workers, stakeholders) 11 € 16,00 € 166,00 $ 227,83
Insurence for guests (companies, workers, stakeholders) 150 € 10,00 € 1.500,00 $ 2.058,74
Welcome bag and thank you t-shirt for volunteers 200 € 5,00 € 1.000,00 $ 1.372,49
Total amount planned in the estimated costs € 51.166,00 $ 70.224,82
Currency € 1,00 $ 1,37

Volunteers will be invited to support the event through their associations, among those: wikimedia chapters (in particular Wikimedia Italia and Wikimedia CH), associations in Esino Lario (Pro Loco, Alpini, Soccorso Val d'Esino, CAI, group of teachers, Amici del Museo delle Grigne), networks of local associations (in particular Pro Loco and Alpini), like-minded associations and groups (Creative Commons, Open Street Map - which in Italy is already linked to Wikimedia Italia, Linux groups and other open software and open knowledge groups and associations). We are also exploring the possibility of involving the association STS Italia - Società Italiana di Studi su Scienza e Tecnologia (Italian society of studies on science and technology), which is an association of researchers which could also contribute to the evaluation of Wikimania Esino Lario.


  1. Legislation summary.
  2. Visa statistics (2012) for the 2023 Schengen consulates of the world: in one third of cases rejection is less than 1 % and in half of cases less than 3 %.
  3. Wikimania London was out of reach even for some Europeans who enjoy visa free access to Italy: contrary to popular belief, citizens of Europe were not necessarily favoured by nearby locations. For instance, 60 % of Serbian attendees had visa rejected by UK; while in 2012 Italian consulates were (together with Switzerland's) the consulates with lower percentage of rejected short-stay visa for Iranians among the countries with over 5 thousands visas issued in Iran; and granted 100 % short-stay visas asked in Serbia.
  4. Based on the visa information pages of previous editions, which however didn't provide stats for visa rejection. The 170 visa countries record of Hong Kong is hard to match. The United Kingdom is not part of Schengen; Frankfurt and Gdańsk of course were, but EU negotiators have not stopped working since then!
  5. Please note that the difficulties were not related to a mismanagement of the procedure but to a refusal of the requests.
  6. Ilario Valdelli has checked by calling the offices of the Swiss customs.