What is a Tradeshow?
What is a tradeshow?
At a tradeshow exhibitors offer their products at wholesale cost to visitors. This means that products are sold in bulk and at a lower price than the RRP. Visitors (retailers) are then able to sell those products in their stores directly to the customer.
In the case of Autumn Fair, exhibitors are often companies that manufacture their own gift and home products and visitors often own or work at independent retail stores, multiples, department stores or online stores.
Why go to a tradeshow?
A tradeshow offers exhibitors the opportunity to display their products to a large audience over a short period of time, to take wholesale orders at the show, and to build industry contacts and leads for future sales.
A tradeshow offers visitors the opportunity to meet their existing suppliers, discover new exhibitors and products and to place orders at the show or at a later date.
What can I expect to see at the show?
At Autumn Fair there will be 1,400 exhibitor stands located through the NEC’s halls, they will be grouped together in their appropriate sectors.
Each business owns a stand and will use this to display their products as they choose.
Our 26,000 visitors enter the arenas and walk around to trade and do business with exhibitors whose products they like.
Keynote speeches and seminars
Visitors can attend seminars from successful names in the industry. All seminars are free of charge and based on a first come first serve basis.
The only exception may be if we are running specific workshops, as these spaces are limited.
Once those wishing to attend have registered for the exhibition they will also be required to book a slot for their workshop of choice via the show website.
Visitors & Registration
Who can attend?
Spring Fair is a trade fair; therefore, it is not open to members of the general public. The show is specific to traders.
You are eligible to attend if you have buying and purchasing responsibilities or control spend. Independent retail stores, multiples, department stores, online businesses, mail order companies, supermarkets, distributors, importers, wholesalers, multi-channel retailers or those looking to start a retail business (in the next 12 months) are all suitable visitors to Spring Fair.
I am a student, am I able to attend the show?
Students of Undergraduate level and above (individuals and groups) on relevant courses of study are welcome to attend the show, but will not be permitted to trade. Students will be asked to show an NUS Identity card or equivalent student identity. Please register via the normal registration process, ensuring to select yourself as a student.
Can I bring Children?
We advise that children under 16 do not attend the event as this is a trade only, and there are no crèche facilities available.
If you are attending with a child, and they are under the age of 16 years, they will require a Child's wristband – these can only be picked up on site, from the registration desks in the main entrances.
Anyone over the age of 16 will be required to register for the event via the normal process.
When will I receive my entry badge?
You can print a copy of your badge as it is attached to your badge email (this will be sent to you a week prior to the show).
If you are unable to print your ticket, don’t worry – just show us your confirmation email at the registration desk on arrival to the show.
What if I have forgotten my ticket when I arrive at the show?
Please go to the Registration desks and they will print your ticket for you. Please have a form of ID with you as you may be asked for proof of company name as the show is only open to trade visitors. ID can be in the form of a business card.
Venue Information, Travel & Accommodation
What date/time does the show open?
6-9 February 2022
Sun 6 Feb - 9:00 - 18:00
Mon 7 Feb - 9:00 - 18:00
Tues 8 Feb - 9:00 - 18:00
Wed 9 Feb - 9:00 - 16:00
How do I get there?
To find out more about how to get to the Spring Fair, please see our dedicated travel page here.
Where can I stay?
To find out more about where to stay during your visit to Spring Fair, please see our dedicated accommodation page here.
Where can I eat / drink?
Cafés, bars and restaurants serving light snacks, meals and refreshments can be found within the halls. There are also a number of outlets outside of the halls, offering anything from a quick drink to a more substantial meal. For more information, click here.
Are there accessible facilities at the venue?
Yes. To find out more details about the NEC’s accessible facilities click here. and facilities at the NEC, click here.
At The Event
How do I find my way around the show once I have arrived?
On arrival to the show, show guides with floor plans will be available to collect at the entrance. There will also be large floor plans at hall entrances.
We will aim to have a sector floor plan available via the show website, near to the time of show open.
How many exhibitors can I expect to see?
The number of exhibitors you can see in a day depends entirely on your show objectives. For example, you may see only 4 exhibitors in a day and spend at least an hour on each stand speaking with the business owners and placing an order for your retail store. On the other hand, if you are attending to browse product and be inspired you may spend less time at each stand and cover dozens of exhibitors in a day.
Are seminars free to attend?
Yes, seminars are free to attend.
NB: Please note that as well as seminars, there will be workshops running. Some workshops will require additional registration/booking due to limited spaces being available. These workshops will be advertised as requiring additional registration on the show website.
I require an invitation letter to assist with my visa application. How do I apply?
Unfortunately, we cannot issue personal/individual letters of invitation for visa purposes. Once you have registered via the show website you will receive a confirmation email which may be sufficient for visa application.
Safe & Secure
What are the conditions of entry at Spring Fair?
We require all attendees (visitor, exhibitor and contractor personnel) to pre-register in advance of arrival at the venue.
Your badge will be sent to you to print at home, ensuring a quicker and simpler arrival process.
In addition, we may be asking all attendees to show proof of COVID-19 status on arrival at the venue, this will need to be one of the following in the form of:
- Proof of completion of a full course of vaccination 2 weeks prior to arrival, whether that requires 2 doses or one dose.
- Proof of negative Lateral Flow Test taken within 48hrs of arrival.
- Proof of natural immunity shown by a positive PCR test result for COVID-19, lasting for 180 days from the date of the positive test and following completion of the self-isolation period.
Lateral flow tests are available from the NHS website or your local pharmacy.
Why do I need to prove my covid-19 Status?
Current information and guidance including that following the Events Research Program, suggest that verifying attendees COVID-19 Status is an effective way of reducing the risk of transmission among large groups. Studies of those who have received a full vaccination course demonstrate that the risk of carrying and transmitting the disease is vastly reduced. For those not vaccinated a lateral flow test has been proven as a reliable way of indicating if people are currently carrying the virus. Therefore, this evidence suggests that this is the best way for us to reduce the risk of transmission within the event.
How do I show proof of my covid status?
If you are a resident in England:
Via the NHS COVID Pass which lets you share your coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination records or test COVID-19 status in a secure way.
OR Proof of your negative Lateral Flow Test (please see details further down)
EU citizens and residents
How do I access the NHS covid pass?
Access the NHS COVID Pass through the NHS App
You can access your NHS COVID Pass through the free NHS App on a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet. Proof of your COVID-19 status will be shown within the NHS App.
Access the NHS COVID Pass through the NHS website.
You can view your COVID-19 status online and download or print it as a PDF document. To access the service, you’ll need to register for an NHS login if you do not have one already. NHS login registrations may take longer than usual when there are high numbers of requests.
If you do not have access to a smart phone, computer or tablet You can request an NHS COVID Pass letter:
- via the NHS website
- Or by calling 119 (select the ‘NHS COVID Pass service’)
To find out more about the NHS COVID Pass click here
Please note the NHS App (which contains the NHS COVID Pass) is different from the NHS Covid App used for Track and Trace.
How do I register the result of my negative lateral flow test?
To make sure you have proof of your negative lateral flow test you must report your result to the NHS. You can do this via using one of the below options – you will need the QR Code, or the ID number from the test strip to report your result.
Report online – (fastest)
Report by telephone - Lines are open every day, 7am to 11am
England, Wales and Northern Ireland: 119 (Free from mobiles and landlines)
Scotland: 0300 303 2713 (charged at your standard network rate)
You can show proof of a Negative lateral flow test via the NHS COVID-19 Pass, an email or text message.
How do I get my covid pass to gain entry to the event if I’m a visitor from Wales?
If you live in Wales, you can find out how to obtain your vaccination status on this website.
Will social distancing be in place?
All legal limits on social distancing have now been lifted. However, we want our community to feel as safe as possible when attending the event therefore we have increased all gangways to 3 meters where possible to allow for additional spacing. We ask all our attendees to be mindful of the ‘Hands, Face, Space’ message.
Will there be hand sanitiser available?
Hand sanitising stations have been installed throughout the NEC at high touch points. We recommend also carrying your own at all times as well. Exhibitors have been asked to supply hand sanitisers within their stand space. Additionally, hand washing facilities are available around the hall perimeters within the venue toilet facilities.
What should I do if I feel unwell or displaying Covid 19 symptoms?
If you feel unwell with symptoms of COVID-19 please do not attend. Should you begin to feel unwell with symptoms of COVID-19 whilst onsite, please follow current Government guidelines which would be for you to leave the event and arrange to go for a PCR test.
What happens If I do not have the NHS app?
Proof of a negative NHS lateral flow test taken within 48hrs prior to attending the event can be displayed via NHS App, SMS text, or via email.
Proof of vaccine can be displayed via the NHS App, NHS website or by downloading and printing off a PDF.
A non-digital letter is also available through the NHS website using the ‘Get your coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination status letter’ service or by phoning 119.
Do I need to take a PCR test before attending the event?
No. You can show proof of a full vaccination course or, proof of a negative lateral flow test to attend the event.
Lateral Flow tests can be obtained from the NHS website or at your local pharmacy.
Who is exempt from Covid-19 status checks?
If you have received a trial vaccine as part of a formally approved COVID-19 vaccine trial in the UK, you will be able to prove your status through the NHS COVID Pass or with a letter confirming your participation in the trial from your trial site.
If you have a medical reason which means you cannot be vaccinated or tested, you may be asked to self-declare this medical exemption.
Will there be any restrictions for international attendees
It is the government’s responsibility to manage COVID-19 status requirements at the borders. As event organisers it is our responsibility to manage all attendees on arrival at the event. We welcome international attendees on the basis they can prove their COVID-19 Status as defined by the government at the time of the event.
Proof of vaccination status and test results demonstrated via the EU Digital COVID Certificate will be accepted at the COVID-19 Status checks
What do you mean by full course vaccination?
Government website defines a full course vaccination as follows:
2 weeks after completing a full course of vaccination, whether that requires 2 doses or one dose (that is, 2 doses of the Moderna, AstraZeneca or Pfizer vaccine, or 1 dose of the Janssen vaccine) (according to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency authorised schedule).