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IWF on the fly?6/25/14
Sorry for another IWF question but anyone have any input on how difficult/miserable it is to show up there on the fly without pre-registering?
Im not positive Ill be able to make it and of course can register a day or two prior but wondering about hotel availability (of course never any guarantees) and the like.
Im not really looking to attend any seminars but rather just spend a couple days at the show. Id likely be flying in and taking a cab as opposed to renting a car and was wondering what the downtown hotel availability/access is like.
I've always been registered well in advance, and always went on a company expense account, so maybe not the best advice. Many guys I knew on their own, get a hotel way out on the outskirts, but get one near a Marta train line. Looks like the Blue and Green lines take you right by the show. They also have extensive bus transport around the inner city hotels just for the show, but most of those hotels will be full. Besides, those are big money! I've never seen long lines at the walk in registration.
No need to rent a car if you're flying. Take the Marta train right from the airport to the show and as Rich said, find a hotel within walking distance of a Marta station and you're good to go.
That's how I've been doing it ever since they moved to Atlanta.
What Mark E. said.
The show is well organized and the lines if you haven't pre-registered have never been terribly long. They have a baggage check room if you have come direct from airport. Close in hotels are likely booked but there are lots of hotels north of down town & near Marta lines. Each Marta coach has a system map on the wall. Good system. Should you drive to Atlanta you can take one of those out-lying hotels, not even on a Marta line, take your car to a free parking garage next to a Marta station and zip to the show. See the on-line Marta site. Good system!
Same advice here, the inner hotels are likely full but the Marta lines run out a long way. Look @ the Marta maps on line. Marta runs to the airport. When you come up the escalator into the main bagage claim area, turn left, go about as far as you can and turn left again. There is a ticket window for Marta, buy a pass for however many days you will be there. $16 to $25, 3 to 7 days. Go up the stairs or escalator to the platform. Trains leave frequently, all headed north. There are quite a few hotels north of town that are near a Marta line. For anyone driving in for the day, there are parking garages for free @ some of the outlying Marta stations, see the online maps..... All the Marta coaches have system maps on the wall.
Atlanta is an easy city to get around on Marta, this years Show could be busy given the last few $$ droughts we have all endured, in 08 I saw CEO's playing practicing putts in Booths, Good tennis shoes two days minimum spend the largest amount of time looking and shopping, revisit and set up purchase appointments after, it is worth seeing it all first !!
Thanks guys. I hoping for a minimum of three days. If I have company on the trip I may drive it (7-8 hrs) but if I fly I will do the public transit for sure.
I guess I will get to looking at hotels. There'd be nothing worse than getting there and having to sleep on a park bench.
Im looking forward to it. Im in desperate need of a little rejuvination/motivation.
"Im in desperate need of a little rejuvination/motivation"
the first time I went alone with a girlfriend, (never do that again)
second time I took all the guys (there were three then) that lit the shop up and made a world of difference !!
Sorry about the double post, I didn't think the first one went. Take a girl friend, ouch!
The following are some of my personal thoughts and observations. Your mileage may vary. :-)
Bringing a friend for your first show:
Bringing a friend for your second show:
OK, back to the show...
Badge scanning part 2:
Carrying everything home with you:
Plan your walking:
Talk to other visitors:
Bring business cards:
Driving, hotels, and MARTA:
Parking at the show:
Enjoy the show!
I remember going up to the the mezzanine level for a break on the second day. There was a Willie Loman sort of a guy who was several years older than me and my buddy sitting next to the koi ponds.
He looked over at us after we sat down and just said "It's gonna hurt when you get back up".
Thanks For the great info Charles, and yes, I have always said"who thought of having a show in Aug, in Atlanta"
Badge Scanning Part 3:
So think about this as you register and supply company information. I found it better to be 'small and insignificant', even when I was spending $150,000 a year on equipment, or else these guys would not leave me alone and let me decide who to talk to.
You are sorta right about the badge color coding, but it has nothing to do with the individual's position and company size. The color coding indicates the TYPE of business, not the individual's position within the business.
For instance, Cabinets may be Red, Architectural Woodworking may be Blue, Education may be Green, Suppliers may be Purple etc.
And you are right, exhibitors do look for certain color codes on badges, as our product line is best sold to certain TYPES of businesses.
Going incognito or supplying inaccurate information will get you on more wrong follow up lists than the right ones that you really want to contact you. Unless you enjoy throwing out a bunch of inappropriate snail mailed brochures and catalogs or getting a bunch of e-mail that you have absolutely no interest in, be as accurate as you can when registering. It just makes your job easier when the follow ups begin after the show.
The system may have changed in the last few shows, but shows in the 80's and 90's were definitely color coded, by company size - either employee count or sales volume. There also was an obvious visibility to the badge holder's decision making status within the company. I went to shows when I worked at either end of the size spectrum and the selective badging was obvious.
Working a show like that would be my personal definition of hell, so I can understand the no eye-contact, badge focus that occurs as a result of the categorization. By the last day, there is a definite burned-out note in the air.
But it remains the greatest place to see large equipment under power and find all sorts of solutions to our efforts. I often discovered things I did not know existed, and ending up using them in our processes to good advantage, despite the preponderance of plaid pants.
The show, as mentioned above, also had an inspiring factor that fired me up for a good several months after. That is why it is good to take employees - fires them up and gets them thinking.