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Getting Started

So your interested with getting on the hackathon scene?

Where to start

Recurring Hackathon

If it is a continuing hackathon, grab the statistics from the most recent hackathon, and work off of the pros and cons from the last to create a skeleton for the next one.

Brand new hackathon

Make sure you have an organising team ready. MLH does have a massive documentation with how to organise a hack within a year.

Hackathon Organising Team

Make sure that it is a team of at least 5-6 and more depending on the size and location of the hackathon.


If it's a recurring hackathon, review the old finance and determine the budget you wish to have.

For new hackathons, creating a budget can be hard to start. These would be some stuff you wish to start off with:

  • Food & Snacks
  • Prizes, if you're providing your own
  • General amenities (Plates, Cutlery, Cords, etc...)

Once done, check with the number of sponsors you wish to have. More info on Sponsorship Tiers.

Hackathon Size

Usually MLH generally allow hackathons within 150-200 attendees and more. Think how many attendees you want to get. Make sure where you're hosting the hackathon can appropriately handle that many attendees. Factor in as well the amount of Sponsors coming on site.

Sponsorship Tiers

This is a core element of the hackathon budget as well as how the hackathon runs. Having different tiers can provide different add-ons for what a sponsor can do within the hackathon.

Most hackathons have at least 3 different tiers, often bronze, silver and gold, which is a common trend between different hackathons.

Major League Hacking (MLH)

If you're creating a brand new Hackathon, MLH may be able to provide some key information and financial support to ensure that the hackathon runs smoothly. Hackathons registered with MLH also receive additional support with events before, during & after the day. Check here for the process to make it an MLH hackathon event.

Social Media

Consider which social media outlets you're wanting to use. (Would NEVER advise Snapchat or TikTok).

  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Facebook

Last update: February 7, 2020