Rising Restrictions: Las Vegas Trade Shows Step Back

In a previous blog, we mentioned that conventions and trade shows were expected to make a return in Las Vegas, but in less than a month things have changed. On November 22, Governor Steve Sisolak announced to Nevadans that he will increase restrictions to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 due to the alarming rise in case numbers.

This mandate has business owners and locals worried, as it limits the capacity of people within an establishment and jeopardizes the likelihood of trade shows and conventions coming back soon. Learn more about the announcement below and how it affects the trade show industry.

What Does Limited Capacity Apply To?

The measures proposed by Sisolak mandated that restaurants, bars, gaming operations, gyms, fitness facilities, and other businesses and activities are to be limited to 25 percent of applicable fire code capacity. This number is half of the previous capacity allowed. This means that we are taking a step backward in expanding the number of people who can safely congregate within areas, such as showrooms and convention halls.

Grocery stores and retail stores can still operate at 50 percent capacity and must adhere to strict distancing guidelines and heavy monitoring regulations.

Related Article: Experiential Marketing Paves The Way Without Trade Shows

How Are Trade Shows Affected?

Despite allowing essential businesses to stay open, no large gatherings are to be held during this time. This, unfortunately, includes events such as conventions and trade shows. While the city has hosted 1.9 million visitors in October of this year, which is half of the previous year, the restrictions will make it more difficult for visitors when they’re in town. While the increased restrictions are only in place for a short period of time, the news of cases spiking doesn’t bode well for the return of trade shows.

For now, Sisolak has noted that public gatherings are still possible, but can have no more than 50 people or 25 percent capacity – whichever is less. Governor Sisolak stated, “In this defining moment, I implore Nevadans to tap into their independent spirit and consider their own personal responsibility.”

Only time will tell if Nevadans can make strides to overcome the high number of cases in the state. Until then, we will continue to monitor the industry for any signs of a comeback.


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