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Trade Show Season in Las Vegas: Tips to Survive

Yes the countdown is on for Trade show season in Las Vegas. January until June is the 1st season. September to mid November is the 2nd one with events like Electric Daisy Carnival, Well Rounded Las Vegas & National Finals Rodeo filling in the time frame to keep our hotels packed.

If you want to visit Vegas in the “off season” it’s December 15-24. that’s it. Cheap hotels. Free buffets. Lots of Glitz.

Otherwise if you are a road warrior like we are and attend over 150 shows per year, here is what I recommend.

Invest in a really comfortable pair of shoes. Forget heels or wingtips. Yes they look good but honestly, NO one at trade shows, especially the bigger ones cares about your Manolos or Ferragamo pointed toe wing tips.

If you want to dine a specific restaurant – make a reservation. Especially in high season, many exhibitors book out entire restaurants for private dining. Use Open Table to secure you seat AND do not be late.

Put all your trade show related items in a folder and make sure you put it in your carry-on. Badge/hotel confirmation/floor plan – and yes there are apps for this BUT none of the convention centers OR hotels has great wifi and cell service. We want folks to gamble not use their phone. Side note: Map your show before you go.

If you are an exhibitor or event planner – make sure you have your logisitics, booth plan, meetup locations, and staff lists with you. A copy of your order form from GES or whoever is servicing your show, and the cell numbers of the booth staff If you are hiring local folks to staff your booth, make sure you speak to them prior to arriving – ideally meet them for coffee ahead of time. and have BACKUPS just in case. Nevada is a very low wage state and people will take another job for a quarter more. True story.

If you plan on arriving early or staying over, make sure you have confirmed those dates. Many shows are back to back and the hotels often over book. Don’t think you’ll get here and be able to check in early or extend. You might be spending the night in Pahrump.

Stay hydrated! We are in a desert and even if it is 40 degrees -its a dry cold. All the casinos have free bottled water on the casino floor so when you get a cocktail, ask for a back up water.

Enjoy yourself but don’t over do it. Nothing worse than waking up in Vegas and not knowing what you did the night before. Chances are you’ll find it on youtube eventually. We have cameras everywhere.

The girl eyeing you longingly at the bar probably will cost a couple of drinks and $300.00 for an hour of her company. and she might not be a girl. No judgement .. just keeping you informed.

Finally: Get off the strip. There is so much more to Vegas than just the 4 block area from Sahara to Russel road. Go downtown, walk around Fremont. Explore our Chinatown or go to the Pinball Museum, or the Atomic Energy Museum, or try one of the great off the beaten path restaurants that isn’t in a hotel. If you stay over, take a hike in Red Rock. Or rent a BMW motorcycle and let the desert breeze warm your soul.

Vegas Means Business but we have fun while we are doing it.

Las Vegas: Expo!Expo!

The International Association of Exhibitions and Events is today the leading association for the global exhibition industry. IAEE represents over 9,000 individuals in over 50 countries who conduct and support exhibitions around the world, and IAEE proclaims that “Exhibitions and Events mean business”. Their show goes by Expo! Expo!, and IAEE’s Annual Meeting & Exhibition brought together organizers and industry suppliers for their mutual benefit through exhibition, education and networking events. The focus of Expo! Expo! was, we heard, to create a learning culture and strategic networking opportunities. To that end, the 2015 Expo! Expo! Connect platform leveraged state-of-art networking and matchmaking technology, to get everyone talking. Just a big gabfest, then? Deep down, this was a big-talking industry making an exhibition of itself…. #ExpoExpo

New Orleans: International Workboat Show –

At the International WorkBoat Show, over 1,000 marine product and service suppliers exhibited their watery wares. The conference had strands on Business Management (“Explore the various challenges and opportunities that come with running a maritime business); Safety (“For most marine operations, maintaining a safe workplace is a top priority and an ongoing challenge, requiring updates on current standards, best practices, and new maritime safety solutions”; Technical (“The marine industry is a constantly evolving technological environment, showing how the latest innovations can bring efficiency and enhance quality from the corporate office to the vessel engine room”); plus Legal and Regulatory (“Understand marine law, current rules and regulatory trends, and learn the status of key pending legislation so you can plan ahead to keep your business in compliance”). Remember, the Sea is a harsh mistress, and seafarers must obey her laws…. #wbmr15 #workboatshow

San Diego: National Association of Realtors – NARAnnual

NAR is the National Association of Realtors, and this expo is supposed to host the largest trade show floor in real estate, with 400 exhibitors eager to show off their innovations and ideas. Solutions showcased at the expo included tech tools, real estate software, internet advertising, mobile devices and applications, mortgage and financial services, home protection and warranties, professional development and training, franchises and referral services, office products, “Green” innovations and real estate properties and developer referral programs. A newly designed space featured commercial technology presentations, deal-making networking tables and a property pitch session – all designed to increase every opportunity to find and generate new business in real estate. Delegates could even meet football legend Emmitt Smith, if they tipped up at the NAR booth. Got your NAR pass? No need for a Hail Mary pass, then…. #narannual

Las Vegas – SEMA 2015 – Automotive Week 2015

The SEMA Show, we were told, is pretty much the biggest automotive specialty products trade event in the world. This year like others, it apparently drew the industry’s brightest minds and hottest products to the Las Vegas Convention Center. As part of the AAIW, the SEMA Show attracts more than 100,000 industry leaders from more than 100 countries, all searching for profit opportunities in the automotive, truck and SUV, powersports, and RV markets. SEMA Show drew big numbers of both domestic and international buyers. The displays were segmented into twelve sections, and a New Products Showcase featured nearly 2,000 newly introduced parts, tools and components. In addition, the SEMA Show provided attendees with educational seminars, product demonstrations and special events. Delegates were reminded frequently that being there would put them “ahead of the curve”… So that explains some of the curvy-type people manning the booths… #sema2015
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Atlanta: Fresh Summit 2015

Fresh Summit is the event where produce and floral industry leaders from around the world converge to share ideas, breakthroughs and inspiration. No other single conference in the produce industry, we heard, helps create global connections, cultivate industry talent, or find practical solutions to complex science and technology issues. Florally-minded delegates could explore a floral pavilion double its size from previous years, and ensure they were on the cutting-edge of tomorrow’s trends. With more than 18,000 people participating, Fresh Summit enabled eager horticulturalists to anticipate change, identify emerging trends and profit from new opportunities, since PMA’s connections reach across the supply chain and around the world, attracting the best of today’s decision-makers, and tomorrow’s game changers. It’s a flower-power thing…. #freshproduce
We had the privilege of meeting some great folks like the ones at Sun-Rich Fresh Fruit – where they demo’d how they capture that fresh fruit flavor we find at our grocery stores!

Houston: Deep Offshore Technology International #DOTIntl 2015

This is not the dot-com or dot-and-carry kind of dot, DOT is the acronym for Deep Offshore Technology International, which explains why the show picks an oil town like Houston. DOT International aims to enhance its position as the worldwide leading industry forum dedicated to “confronting the technical challenges related to the lifecycle development of oil and gas in deepwater basins, by sharing collective experiences and new technologies to improve the quality, safety, and economics of current and future deepwater endeavors”. DOT showcases the most innovative technologies in the deepwater oil and gas industry, and provides a forum to discuss the specific challenges associated with hostile and ultra-deepwater environments, shaping the future of the deep and ultra-deepwater industry, from the initial well spud through to platform installation and operation. Heyyyy. Deep, man…. #DeepOps