A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO TRADE FAIRS: LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
If you’re reading this article, then you want to improve your approach towards trade fairs and exhibitions. This article is a part of an ongoing series we’ve called Beginner’s Guide to Trade Fairs – a concise, structured guide aimed at getting the most out of your business travels. In this day and age when you have the opportunity to travel and represent your business in the flesh, it’s easy to make mistakes. But you don’t have to with our clever advice. Last week, for example we told how to get the best deals and the week before that discussed how to choose a trade fair best suited for your business.
Prices rank first in importance when it comes to planning any business trip – you want to be able to afford your travels and return on that investment. Equally as important to your plight is location. Sometimes it repays you to be close to the exhibition centre, but other times the location means higher prices. Other times, you might save a ton on accommodation, but find the hotel sits too far away and out of the way of public transport.
You need to strike balance and there are four types of hotel locations to consider, which we’re going to break down for you!
Blink and You’re There
As a general rule, these are the hotels everyone wants and covets – located within walking distance from the exhibition centre. Either within your field of vision or a refreshing 20 minutes of walking. Statistically speaking these hotels tend to fill up fast, if your trade fair or exhibition gathers large crowds. Hotel owners know this and as a result, not only do you have a small window of opportunity, but prices tend to be higher. These are best suited for companies with a little more to spare and will function as an exhibitor with products to present. Logistics will happen significantly easier.
City Central and Connected
If you’re finding out that all the hotels you want sitting near the exhibition centre have been booked, it’s time to widen the search. Position yourself in the city centre – a good number of central hotels come in lower price categories, so you get to cut on your expenses. Look for hotels near train stations, popular bus stops serviced by numerous lines and underground stations. You gain mobility and in most cases reduce your commute to anywhere between 10-30 minutes daily. We recommend this for exhibitors as well with low budgets. It’s fairly easy to transport promo materials and smaller products for demonstrations.
Welcome to Suburbia
Here we’re moving away from the expectations you have when you think about business trips. These hotels are usually located in residential areas surrounded by houses and living complexes. You’re guaranteed a quiet stay and in general, they’re used by holidaymakers. Distance-wise you might have challenges – you might have walk longer to get public transport, while at the same time the commute takes you a good 20 minutes to boot. Or more depending on traffic. Prices, however, are low. We recommend this to visitors who don’t intend to have a full program or exhibitors who have in their budget the funds to rent a vehicle for their stay.
Nearby Smaller Towns
Who says you have to be accommodated in the same city as your trade fair? Nobody. A budding practice for business travellers is to book their stay in the country, small-town hotels, where rooms rates are incredibly low and instead use a train connection to get to the exhibition centre early in the morning. You get warmer hospitality, great views of the countryside, keep expenses low and benefit from efficient transport. If you want faster and more efficient commutes on your schedule, renting a car makes a more feasible decision.
Now that you have this knowledge, you have to decide for yourself where your priorities lie and what your finances are going to allow. Once you answer these questions, you’ll have an idea for the best strategic approach and keep in mind that often times, availability comes into play so start preparations early.
This concludes our article. Nothing is set in stone and you can’t get the best location 100% of the time. If you’re unsure about location, just get in touch with our team at Go Fair ltd and we will do our best to position you as close as possible without the extra hassle. If you’ve found this article helpful, leave a comment! We really appreciate your feedback. Send us your ideas for future articles at [email protected] and maybe we can answer your question next.