Want to make the most of your time in Vegas with the least amount of effort? First-timers and old-timers agree: Expo is more rewarding when you can approach it with ease. Take these tips from exhibitors and attendees who have taken a turn or two—or 10—on the show floor:

“Here are a few tips I have for traveling to the shows—they’ve worked pretty well for me. First, pack coordinating colors for your wardrobe the entire time you’re going to be at the show. This way you can wear the same shoes and accessories the entire week, and it saves space in your luggage. Also, wear comfortable shoes. (Duh.)

Second, if you pick up catalogs and samples, use the show’s courier services. But if you choose not to, [when you pack for the trip] put your clothes into a bag and then put that bag into a larger bag. This way you’ll have an empty bag to put everything into for your trip home, and you only have to check one bag on your trip to the show.

Third, instead of trying to visit as many booths as you can, make it a priority to visit the booths of your current suppliers, as well as 24 to 36 suppliers that are new to you, and spend quality time there looking and asking questions.

Fourth, map out the classes you want to attend ahead of time, and get there early. The good classes fill up quickly, so you’ll want to make sure you have a seat!

When it comes to dining, Ri Ra has what could possibly be the best Reuben on the planet—and Fat Tuesday has cheap beer. But keep in mind that food is no longer ‘cheap’ in Vegas—plan to spend $50-100 a day for your meals.”

Chris Clark

Key Account Executive

Radius Marketing Solutions

“I could not survive without a bag to hold beverages with ice. The Topanga from Picnic Time is with me at every major show. Not only can I spend more time in the booth, I save a lot of money not purchasing beverages on the show floor.”

Harvey Mackler, MAS


GEMPIRE/Floral Promotions

“By now, everyone should know to wear comfortable shoes, so my Expo advice is this: Despite being tired, before going to your room, get out and network! During the day, talk to the people around you. Ask people questions about their business and learn their story. Then, find a planned event to attend, get a group of your new friends together for dinner, or both. Connect with these people on Facebook, and keep in touch throughout the year. Visiting booths and seeing products is important, but these people you meet and connections you make will be just as helpful during your career, if not more helpful, than walking the show floor.”

Charity Gibson

Founder and CEO

Green Banana Promos

“Two words: comfortable shoes. One more: hydrate. When you think you’ve had enough water, drink more. Also, spoken with the voice of experience: pack a portable humidifier!”

Mike Schenker, MAS


Mike Schenker Consulting