GOSH 2018 FAQs

Event Timing

When do I arrive?

The dates of GOSH 2018 are from October 10th – 13th 2018, full days. Since we expect all participants to attend all four days (this is a requirement if you are receiving travel funding), and the gathering starts on the morning of 10th, we recommend arriving on the 9th.

There will be some self-organised community events pre- and post-GOSH, which you can check out on the forum. In particular a pre-GOSH residency is planned at X Factory. Please bear this in mind for your travel and reach out to the relevant event organisers.

When do I leave?

You can leave any time after the 13th. We expect that the main meeting will end at 17:30 on 13th October and there will be an evening event organised. We anticipate that most people travelling internationally will leave on 14th.

Getting to Shenzhen and travel funding

How do I book my flight?

If you are receiving travel funding, you will be emailed the amount you are being awarded. You can book any economy flight through any means so long as the amount you request for reimbursement does not exceed that amount – but we ask that you are mindful of costs as any savings from the budget can be used to support more people.

You will be reimbursed after you attend the gathering by submitting your receipt. Also keep your boarding passes. We will send out an email after GOSH 2018 detailing how and where to send this information for reimbursement.

What if I want GOSH to book the flight for me?

We will only reimburse flights, rather than book and pay for them up front. If this arrangement will prohibit you from attending the gathering, email us.

How do I get reimbursed for travel expenses?

You will be reimbursed after you attend the gathering by submitting your receipts. Also keep your boarding passes. More information on the reimbursement process will be available over the coming months.

I got travel support from GOSH – are there limitations to what I can spend it on?

Yes – GOSH funding can be used towards:

  • Return flights (i.e. there and back) to China from your location. Note that while Shenzhen has an airport, Hong Kong is a short train ride from Shenzhen and may be more convenient for long haul travellers.
  • Visa costs and travel related to visa appointments

GOSH travel funding will not cover:

  • Ground transport costs to and from the airport in your starting location and Shenzhen.
  • Local transport in Shenzhen during the meeting
  • Premium tickets for any form of transport
  • Onward flights to other destinations unless the combined cost is lower than a return ticket
  • Accommodation. Please email organizers@openhardware.science if this will stop you attending GOSH.


Last minute high priced tickets are to be avoided and all tickets supported by GOSH must be purchased at least one month in advance. All tickets should be purchased in economy class,premium/business/first class travel cannot be reimbursed. While we don’t want attendees to travel needlessly in the middle of the night or experience unneeded multiple stops, please set a target of adding no more than 10% to the cost of a ticket merely for convenience. We cannot reimburse for upgrades, baggage fees, headset rentals in flight, or food/beverages purchased during flights and layovers.

I am now able to fund some of my flight.

Great! This means some of the funding we allotted to you can be moved to other participants in need. Please email organizers@openhardware.science once you know you don’t need your whole travel stipend so we can provide others with funds. When it comes time for reimbursement, just ask for the amount you need rather than the amount we allotted to you.

Do I have to pay for my own food?

GOSH is covering a few meals during the gathering that will occur at the venue in the University canteen, but other meals are the responsibility of attendees.

Getting to Shenzhen from Hong Kong

We recommend taking the ferry either directly from the airport or from the city if arriving early.

Directly from airport: Hong Kong International SkyPier Airport Ferry(香港国际机场海天码头)to Shekou Ferry Terminal (Shenzhen, 深圳蛇口码头)~28 USD each way

(Do not go through emigration at HongKong. DO NOT PICK UP LUGGAGE. Go directly to ferry to buy ticket. They will automatically transfer luggage and shall find them when arrive in Shenzhen after emigration in ferry terminal.)

From Hong Kong: Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal (Hongkong,香港港澳码头) to Shekou Ferry Terminal(Shenzhen, 深圳蛇口码头)~28 USD each way

More information here and here.

I’m interested in the overall budget for the event, is it available?

You can access the budget for GOSH 2018 here. This only includes funds that have been committed as of July 2018. If you have other ideas for sponsorship funds, please let us know!


The venue of the event will be at OpenFIESTA – Tsinghua University.

Address: 2nd floor, Building J, Tsinghua Campus in the University Town, Shenzhen (518055), P.R. China.


There is no registration fee. However, there is a suggested fee of USD 250 if attendees can pay for it, in order to support those participants in need of funding.
If you haven’t been contacted about this and would like to contribute, contact organizers@openhardware.science


Accommodation options and prices

You are responsible for booking your accommodation unless you have GOSH accommodation support (we have extremely limited funding to help those who would not be able to attend without this support, please contact organizers@ if this applies to you).

We recommend Vienna Hotel in the University Town near the venue on campus. The price is around 65$ per room (for one or two people) and it includes buffet breakfast. Book online or by emailing Ms Gong and quoting GOSH 2018.

  1. Vienna Hotel (Shenzhen University City Store) 维也纳酒店(大学城店)-  about 65$ per room for one or two people. Recommended GOSH hotel!
  2. Kylinvilla 麒麟山庄 (high level)- about 160$ . Please note that this is some distance from the venue.)
  3. Aii Life Serviced Residence 里寓服务公寓 – 60$ for single or twin room. Close to the venue.
  4. Lavande Hotel Shenzhen University City Subway Station Branch 丽枫酒店深圳大学城地铁站店 – 60$ for single or twin room.
  5. inhoko 银河控主题酒店(深圳大学城店) – 30$ per room for single or bunk bed room. 40$ for twin bed room.

You can also find cheaper hotels in the area but please not that not all Chinese hotels are qualified to host international visitors and the reception may not able to communicate in English.

There are other accommodation suggestions in central Shenzhen if you prefer to stay there but note that these are a significant distance from the venue. They are close to Huaqiangbei electronics market and Shenzhen Open Innovation Lab (SZOIL)

I want a roommate!

Great! If you already know people who are attending GOSH and would like to buddy up, please book as a group or indicate that you would like some roommates via the GOSH Forum. 

Great! If you already know people who are attending GOSH and would like to buddy up, please book as a group or indicate that you would like some roommates via the GOSH Forum. We will set up a list of attendees and a private category on the Forum for these types of logistical discussions in the coming couple of weeks.

How do I get from the hotel to the venue?
More information coming soon…

Visas and Invitation Letters

We strongly suggest that you check the web pages of your local Chinese embassy/consulate at your location and get in touch with them if in doubt, as Visa requirements may vary for different countries.

It is usually best to apply for a tourist visa if appropriate in your context as these are the easiest application to make and usually do NOT require an invitation letter, but please contact your local embassy if in doubt. The Type F visa or a Type M business visa may be more appropriate in your circumstances.

I need a letter of invitation to apply for a visa or for funding

We are happy to provide an official letter of invitation if your visa type requires it. Please fill in the appropriate template linked below  and email to gosh2018visas@protonmail.com (this is an encrypted mail box).

Please note that the text of the invitation letter may change depending on what type of visa letter you require, but please fill in the existing template so we have all the necessary information from you. Remember to let us know i) if the letter is for a visa, funding or both; ii) what type of visa you are applying for; iii) any specific pieces of information we should include.

Choose the type of visa you need according to the information provided by your local embassy and let us know the requirements for the letter so we can provide you with one.

We do not need a copy of your passport.

If you need other information included, please indicate this in the email to us.

Important information on visa responsibilities:

  • Your visa is your responsibility, please start work on getting one as soon as possible.
  • You are responsible for letting us know in good time what is required for your visas. We will endeavour to return invitation letters as quickly as possible but we have received some very last minute requests in the past.
  • GOSH cannot cover tickets in the event that visas aren’t granted and in hand two days before your departure date – you are responsible for cancelling you flights if the visa does not arrive by this time. If you have any questions, including about cancellation fees, let us know on organizers@openhardware.science

I need a contact person in China.

Please contact organizers@openhardware.science

What do I do if my visa is not granted in time?

GOSH cannot cover tickets in the event that visas aren’t granted and in hand two days before your departure date – you are responsible for cancelling you flights if the visa does not arrive by this time. If you have any questions, including about cancellation fees, let us know on organizers@openhardware.science

Programming and Participants

What are the scheduled activities?

The program structure is on the program page.  The core elements are:

  • unconference sessions – participant driven and defined workshops, talks, or discussions on topics defined at conference itself.
  • roadmap sessions – discussions about last years progress on the GOSH roadmap, mission, and core values what to do in the coming year.
  • networking and outreach – we have a public event at X Factory, outings to several accelerators in the area, and chances for participants to get to know each other.

Who else is coming? Is anyone else from my country attending?

Please see the full list of 2018 participants.

Will there be vegetarian options for food?


What should I bring to GOSH 2018?

Anything you want! We recommend you bring a laptop for collaboration and for online forums, and we’d love it if you brought an example of the OSH work you do to share with others. You can also bring a poster or other way to present your work if bringing the OSH itself isn’t feasible. We will have a tabling event for people to show what they work on.

I want to help plan the program!

Great! Please email organizers@openhardware.science and let us know.


Tell me about the wi-fi…

  • GOSH venue: There will be a sign with the password for wi fi when you arrive.
  • Vienna Hotel: Available in public areas free of charge.
  • Airport: Yes in Hong Kong and Shenzhen.

You may wish to use a VPN in China
VPN tools:  lantern

People and Contacts

Who is organizing all of this?

Your GOSH 2018 organizers are volunteers who work in open science hardware. We are scientists, developers, and OSH users just like you, and we have dedicated some of our time to organizing GOSH 2018. You can contact them on organizers AT openhardware.science

The local GOSH 2018 organizing committee is:

  • Ji Li, Open FIESTA, Tsinghua University
  • David Li, Shenzhen Open Innovation Lab
  • Vicky Xie, Shenzhen Open Innovation Lab

I need a contact person in China
Please contact organizers@openhardware.science

Emergency Contacts

We will distribute an email with emergency contacts and the phone number of the emergency contact details for the GOSH organizers before your arrival in Shenzhen.

Fire department: 119
Emergencies: 120
Police: 110

Where we’re planning and talking

It’s all happening in the GOSH Forum! Join us at https://forum.openhardware.science/c/gosh-2018

Other useful information about Shenzhen

Public transport
Find more information on local transportation here.

Power adapters
Electricity is 220 volts/50 hz. Two-pin European and North American, as well as three-pin Australian style plugs are generally supported. However, be careful to read the voltage information on your devices to ensure they accept 220V (twice the 110V used in many countries) before plugging them in — you may cause burnout and permanent damage to some devices such as hairdryers and razors.

ATMs (Getting Cash)
More information to follow…

Everyone in China uses Wechat for communication. It’s super useful to install, we recommend you do it before you arrive!