3 Products to Cut Down on Germs at Trade Shows and Events

July 23, 2020

With concern over germs at perhaps an all-time high, event organizers must rethink areas that are traditionally high-touch at conferences and trade shows. These three companies have options to help decrease the risk of spreading the coronavirus at events. 

Antimicrobial Handrails

Ad Rail USA — which is working with major events including CES, RECon, AAFP, AWS Public Summit, Microsoft Inspire, NADA, VMWorld and others — has an antimicrobial handrail media that can significantly cut down germs on escalators. The handrail graphics include a special additive in lamination that has been tested effective against 99.9 percent of bacteria, according to Gianni Cotteta, president of Ad Rail USA. The company launched in 2008 for malls and airports, then expanded to convention centers and events about six years ago—but this product is now seeing more interest than ever. “I've been telling our customers about our antimicrobial benefit for 12 years,” says Cotteta. “However, up until now, revenue has been the main focus and key driver for our clients.” The added benefit here is that these handrail graphics can be branded, providing a perfect sponsorship opportunity.

Sneeze Shield Registration Counters

Liberty Expo

Registration is typically a high-contact situation at trade shows. To make these areas safer, Kansas City-based Liberty Exposition Services has debuted a new design for registration counters with plexiglass barriers as a response to the pandemic. “Our main goal was to ensure that show management, exhibitors and attendees feel safe and comfortable once they step foot on the show floor again,” says Madison Styhl, a sales associate with Liberty. “These sneeze guards create a protective barrier between staff and those who are registering for the event.” The first event to use the new design was at the Interface conference at Overland Park Convention Center in Overland Park, Kansas. In addition, Liberty also offers hand-sanitizing stations, social distancing floor clings and plastic barriers.


Germ-Free Pens

The Pen Guy

Branded promotional pens are a ubiquitous staple at trade shows, but with the possibility of many hands touching them at registration or in expo booths over the course of an event, they may not be as safe to use or give away anymore. Jackson, Tenn.-based The Pen Guy offers a line of antimicrobial, antibacterial pens made with special additives that help prevent the spread of bacteria and allergens. According to company CEO Gary Austin, having a mindful strategy to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria at live events is more important than ever. “Our special line of antimicrobial and antibacterial pens uses a unique manufacturing process to prevent the spread of bacteria and allergens, and provides you with a creative, health-conscious way to share your business brand and story,” he says.




What new products are you turning to in planning future trade shows to keep your exhibitors, staff and attendees safe? Tell us in the comments below.

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Overview: The award-winning Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) goes the extra mile to make every day extraordinary by offering customer service excellence and industry-leading partnerships. From their dedicated in-house Rigging team to their robust Exhibitor Services, The Center of Hospitality brings your imagination to life by helping you host unforgettable meetings and events. With more than 2 million square feet of exhibit space, world-class services and a dream destination, we are committed to making even the most ambitious conventions a reality. In October 2023, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners voted to approve allocating Tourist Development Tax funding for the $560 million Phase 5A completion of the OCCC. The Convention Way Grand Concourse project will include enhancements to the North-South Building, featuring an additional 60,000 square feet of meeting space, an 80,000- square-foot ballroom and new entry to the North-South Building along Convention Way. “We are thrilled to begin work on completing our North-South Building which will allow us to meet the growing needs of our clients,” said OCCC Executive Director Mark Tester. “As an economic driver for the community, this project will provide the Center with connectivity and meeting space to host more events and continue to infuse the local economy with new money and expanding business opportunities.” Amenities: The Center of Hospitality goes above and beyond by offering world-class customer service and industry-leading partnerships. From the largest convention center Wi-Fi network to custom LAN/WAN design, the Center takes pride in enhancing exhibitor and customer experience.  The OCCC is the exclusive provider of electricity (24-hour power at no additional cost), aerial rigging and lighting, water, natural gas and propane, compressed air, and cable TV services. Convenience The Center is at the epicenter of the destination, with an abundance of hotels, restaurants, and attractions within walking distance. Pedestrian bridges connect both buildings to more than 5,200 rooms and is within a 15-minute drive from the Orlando International Airport. The convenience of the location goes hand-in-hand with top notch service to help meet an event’s every need. Gold Key Members The OCCC’s Gold Key Members represent the best of the best when it comes to exceptional service and exclusive benefits for clients, exhibitors and guests. The Center’s Gold Key memberships with Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and Walt Disney World greatly enhance meeting planner and attendee experiences offering world-renowned venues, immersive experiences and creative resources for their events. OCCC Events: This fiscal year, the OCCC is projected to host 168 events, 1.7 million attendees, and $2.9 billion in economic impact.  The Center’s top five events during their 2022-2023 fiscal year included:  AAU Jr. National Volleyball Championships 2023 200,000 Attendees $257 Million in Economic Impact MEGACON 2023 160,000 Attendees $205 Million in Economic Impact Open Championship Series 2023 69,500 Attendees $89 Million in Economic Impact Sunshine Classic 2023 42,000 Attendees $54 Million in Economic Impact Premiere Orlando 2023 42,000 Attendees $108 Million in Economic Impact