“They’re baaaaaack!” Live events are returning, and we are here for it. With all the trade shows cancelled in 2020 and the lack of personal interaction, it’s about time. However, don’t expect the trade show season of 2019. No, sir. There will be new procedures and protocols as organizers consider the health and safety of exhibitors and attendees and staff.
A lot has changed since we left the trade show floor early last year, and you can expect every show to look different. Many event halls are taking extra measures (even more than governmentally-required) to ensure your safety. Here are a few of the changes you can expect to see as you attend events this year.
GBAC STAR ACCREDITATION
As the cleaning industry’s ONLY outbreak prevention, response, and recovery accreditation, the Global Biorisk Advisory Council has a tall order. Their STAR accreditation for facilities gives you peace of mind that all systems are go to prevent and recover from any possible health risk. Facilities with GBAC’s STAR accreditation are guaranteed to be safe. It is the industry’s highest standard. As you look at your venues’ cleaning practices and safety procedures, you might notice them boasting a GBAC STAR. And rightly so. They are not easily earned and maintained, and you can be sure these facilities are working hard for you.
CLEAR is an app designed to streamline the screening process for entry into a venue. CLEAR’s Health Pass technology creates a safer conference environment and experience with its Covid-19 screening process. Anyone attending an event at a venue requiring a CLEAR pass must download the app, complete an in-app survey upon arrival, and scanned at a temperature-checking kiosk at the event.
While this measure might comfort those in attendance, it can also present a challenge to exhibitors. You’ll need to have a backup person or a backup plan in case one of your team has a fever at check-in, even if that fever is NOT because of Covid-19. Make arrangements ahead of time so that you won’t be short a team member.
Speaking of temperature checks, expect them early and often. Some venues require them once a day, and some require them every time you enter the doors. Temperature checks are the first line of defense, are inexpensive and painless, and offer a measure of protection against possible infection and spread.
Again, you’ll need to make arrangements if a staffer has a fever. They will be banned from the event most likely, even if 24 hours later they are fever-free. Have a plan in place to replace them or divvy up their responsibilities.
Cambridge Healthtech Institute announced recently that all of its upcoming events are requiring proof of Covid-19 inoculations for attendees. There is not much indication that this will become a sweeping trend, but certainly other venues will be enforcing similar rules. For some exhibitors and attendees, this will be a deal breaker when deciding which trade shows to participate in. Know before you go what the venue requires. The CLEAR technology app mentioned above can store your vaccine passport and information for you so that you will be “cleared” before you even get to the event and will not be held up by paperwork or anything else.
Although these don’t fall under “policies and procedures,” there are other important pieces of traveling to trade shows in our brave new world that you need to remember.
- Food – gone are the days when the free breakfast bars are wide open, when the event halls are lined with food kiosks, when you can walk around with food and drink everywhere you go. Check with your event hall and hotel before you go about food availability.
- Manufacturing costs – the costs of material goods has skyrocketed, meaning that your costs have probably gone up. When considering whether to change or upgrade your booth or event space, check with Skyline to get the best product at the best deal.
- Virtual and hybrid shows are changing, too. Maybe you aren’t ready yet or can’t make the next trade show. Virtual shows are still happening and are here to stay. And they’re getting better and better at reflecting and replicating the in-person events. If you aren’t comfortable attending a trade show, look for a cutting edge virtual one!
As you and your team venture back into the trade show arena, we are here to assist you every step of the way!
This article was inspired by "Are You Prepared for New Policies at Your Next Trade Show?" by Briquelle Neyens and first appeared at skyline.com