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The opportunity to visit the industry’s largest trade show in North America only comes once every three years. Held at the Las Vegas Convention Center and Festival Grounds from March 10-14, CONEXPO-CON/AGG spans 2,500,000 square feet of exhibits, more than 2,500 exhibitors and boasts 150 educational seminars. With so much to see, it’s smart to have a plan in place as you prepare to join an anticipated 130,000 fellow attendees eager to view the latest technologies and solutions in construction.

CE reached out to Dana Wuesthoff, CONEXPO-CON/AGG’s show director, to help us put together some tips to help first-time attendees or even trade show veterans—through this momentous event with ease, gain some valuable knowledge and connections—and (dare we say it?) enjoy themselves.


"CONEXPO is big, and it can be overwhelming if you are attending for the first time," Wuesthoff says. "There is no way you will have the luck to come across all the booths and events you’ll want to see as you walk. Check out the website for exhibitors and make a plan for dates and times to stop by their booths. And download the CONEXPO app for your phone." The app allows you to create a show schedule and share it with contacts. It also provides you with valuable updates on exhibitors and seminars, so use the app to stay in-the-know about scheduling changes, discounts and more. Search "CONEXPO-CON/AGG" in your app store.

PRO-TIP: If you are not registered, do it now. Early-bird pricing has ended, but you can still take advantage of advance pricing. The advance pricing discount ends March 9.


CONEXPO teams up with hotels and airlines to ensure attendees can get to the show and have a place to stay. You must be registered for the show before booking your trip. Experient is the official housing provider for CONEXPO.

Delta, American and United Airlines are offering various discounts for attendees, but you will need to book your flight within specific dates.

If you are a team leader, make sure your team members have precise instructions on behavior, dress and what you expect them to achieve at the show. If you are a team mem-ber, make sure to get an itinerary, company credit card and a clear understanding of your budget.

PRO-TIP: When searching for plane tickets online, use incognito mode. Many travel sites use cookies to track your searches and will increase flight prices when a route is repeatedly searched to scare you into booking your flight with them.


The CONEXPO badge gives you free access to the shuttle service that runs between the Las Vegas Convention Center and Festival Grounds (unless your hotel is within walking distance of either). Remember, your badge is valuable and is not refundable. Keep it in a safe place when you are not wearing it. If you lose your badge, you will be charged the same amount you paid to replace it. Name substitutions are allowed through March 1.

"The show is expanding the 2020 footprint to include the Las Vegas Festival Grounds, located on the Las Vegas Strip adjacent to the Circus Circus Hotel," Wuesthoff notes. "Types of exhibits in the Festival Grounds will include aerial and cranes, earthmoving, hauling and underground construction." The venue is enormous, so study the map of the show ahead of time your visit Try and schedule your meetings in close proximity to each other.

"The 2020 show connected campus will also include new and expanded transportation, attendee experiences and registration locations. Features will include multi-site drop off locations for shuttles, complimentary monorail passes, golf cart shuttles and various experiential transportation options to accommodate for the attendees throughout the week," Wuesthoff continues. For the first time, CONEXPO is providing pedi-cab services during the convention.

PRO-TIP: If you are traveling with a group, have everyone share their location through the Google maps app so you will be able to keep track of each other during the event.


Research your budget for meals and make advance reservations for any company staff or client entertainment dining plans. Check out your hotel’s restaurants and times of operation, factoring those into your options. Meals at the convention center are mostly of the fast food variety. If you have special dietary needs, call ahead to make sure they will accommodate you.

  • Travel-size first-aid kit with pain relievers and allergy meds
  • Travel-size hand sanitizer wipes to keep the germs at bay
  • Breath mints, freshener or gum—you’ll be doing a lot of up-close talking
  • Cough drops
  • Lip-balm—it’s DRY in Vegas
  • An empty backpack for all that trade show swag so you can stay hands-free
  • Portable charger—yes, there will be charging stations
  • Business cards
  • Padded walking shoes
  • Refillable water bottle
  • Make time for relaxing—you are in Vegas baby! If you can reserve tickets for a show or a restaurant you always wanted to try, now is the time.

PRO-TIP: When you get to your hotel, speak with the concierge to find out where the closest market is so you can buy some healthy snacks and beverages to store in your hotel fridge.


You’ll be in Las Vegas in mid-March. Luckily for you, the temperatures run from the mid- to upper-60s, which means no bulky coats or blistering heat. Plan on business-casual clothing that can be rolled without wrinkling. Check with your airline on what is and isn’t allowed in your luggage.

"I recommend bringing a couple pairs of comfortable walking shoes. Wear a different pair each day. Also, bring a hat, refillable water bottle and sunscreen," Wuesthoff advises. You will have access to 2,500,000 square feet of exhibits, both inside and outdoors, so the last thing you want is to be slowed down by a poor choice of footwear or heat exhaustion. Leave some room in your suitcase to bring back industry business cards, brochures and other goodies you take away from your visit.

"We are committed to bringing people together at CONEXPO-CON/AGG, as the show serves as a catalyst for industry growth and development." - Dana Wuesthoff, Show Director, CONEXPO-CON/AAG

CONEXPO can fill approximately 43 FOOTBALL FIELDS.

More than 300 FORKLIFTS and 30 CRANES are used to set up and dismantle the show.

There are 100 MILLION POUNDS OF FREIGHT on the show floor.

Construction professionals from more than 143 COUNTRIES attend.

Vegas will see an economic impact estimated at more than $190 MILLION (and that’s without you hitting the blackjack table).

For three days of a CONEXPO show, it takes 45 DAYS of installation and dismantling.

PRO-TIP: Slip a few dryer sheets into your bag to keep your clothes fresh and ready to wear.


Grab a show guide to find out where the bathrooms and food courts are, as well as seating for rests. You’re going to be on your feet all day—eat three high protein meals to stay mentally sharp. Be social but stick to your schedule. Make sure you have an exit line strategy such as "I’m sorry to interrupt and thanks for your time, but I have another appointment I need to get to." If you have registered for any events or talks, get there 20 minutes ahead of time to avoid lines. Plan to attend the show every day for the bulk of the day.

PRO-TIP: If you aren’t going to have time for meals during the show, pack high-protein snacks like nuts, hiker’s mix or power bars. Store them in your backpack.


Before you go out or relax for the evening, organize any receipts and contacts you made. Check in with your team if necessary. If you plan to go out in the evening, limit alcohol consumption. You don’t want to miss an appointment or be too groggy for a conversation because of that last drink.

If you have no plans to go out, hit the hotel gym, pool or meditation room to regroup and prepare yourself for the next day.

PRO-TIP: If you have time between checking out of your hotel and getting on your flight, and you don’t want to hit the casinos, check out Springs Preserve, which boasts 180 acres of walking and cycling trails, botanical gardens, deserts and more. It’s 45 minutes away from the center by bus (15 minutes by car), and tickets are only $10.


Don’t wait to send out those emails and respond to connections who reached out to you at the show. Balance those books and turn in any receipts necessary to your company or accountant. Make a note of what went well and what didn’t so you’ll be ready for the next one. Plans for the next CONEXPO show in 2023 are happening now.

"Because of the lead time for contracts and services, you can say we are always in show-planning mode," Wuesthoff says.

PRO-TIP: Meet with your team as soon as possible after the show to pass along any information while it’s fresh in your mind. Make sure your team members have entered contacts into your database.

Wuesthoff’s closing thoughts for attendees? "We are committed to bringing people together at CONEXPO-CON/AGG, as the show serves as a catalyst for industry growth and development," she says.

"Attendees should take advantage of the education that is offered to help improve their skills and their businesses, as well as the free tech talks, networking events and all of the activities that are offered by exhibitors. We want to make sure everyone can explore the entire show and have the best possible experience."


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