How is CES Handling COVID Safety?

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CESNot only is CES, which is taking place January 5 to 8 in Las Vegas, a showcase for breakthrough technologies and global innovators, it leads the entire business events industry in how it manages COVID safety.

The giant show, considered to be the most influential tech event in the world, is owned and produced by the Consumer Technology Association. With 3,100 exhibitors from 173 countries, territories and regions in attendance—and an expected 100,000 attendees—the event takes place in several venues spread across the city.

All eyes are on how this year’s CES manages COVID safety protocols. Among them, interestingly, organizers are suggesting that attendees vaccinate for the flu, with the surge in cases this winter.

Other CES safety protocols include:

  • Recommending that attendees self-test before leaving and upon arriving in Las Vegas.
  • CES will provide one complimentary Abbott BinaxNOW COVID-19 Antigen Self Test kit, provided by Abbott, upon request at several customer service centers it has set up.
  • People are asked not to enter a CES venue or after-hours event if they are sick.
  • For attendees who start to feel ill while on-site at a CES exhibit venue, the show offers free testing at first-aid stations at the Las Vegas Convention Center and Venetian Expo. They also provide isolation recommendations from the CDC for those who test positive.
  • For people who are not sick but seeking a test, CES offers individual pay testing at the convention center and Venetian Expo, both rapid antigen and rapid PCR tests.
  • CES “strongly encourages” COVID vaccination and boosters, and states on its web site that “Vaccines are proven to prevent the threat of critical illness.”
  • Show organizers strongly encourage attendees to get their annual flu shots as well, to further reduce the threat of illness.

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Barbara Scofidio is Editor of Prevue and heads up the Visionary Summits, our exclusive conference series targeting senior-level meeting and incentive planners. In her 30 years in the industry, she has become known for her passion around greening meetings, growing awareness of human trafficking and promoting CSR activities as part of business events. She is currently a member of SITE's Women IN Leadership committee and the media liaison for FICP's Education Committee. She was the first member of the media ever to be invited to sit on a committee by GBTA, where she spent three years on the Groups and Meetings Committee. She has also been an active member of SITE for 30 years, chairing its Crystal Awards committee and acting as a judge. Before joining Prevue in 2014, she served as Editor of Corporate Meetings & Incentives (MeetingsNet) for more than 20 years. She has a BA in Literature/Rhetoric from Binghamton University. Barbara is based outside Boston, in Groton, Mass.