By Jewelers Mutual® Group
Trade shows are highly anticipated events for many in the jewelry industry. Whether you are exhibiting or attending, it’s a great opportunity to network with your peers, meet new customers and greet existing ones, see the latest dazzling merchandise, and learn the latest industry trends. With an action-packed itinerary, it’s easy to forget who else may be in attendance—criminals.
With such vast quantities of high-value merchandise all in one place, criminals are naturally drawn to what could potentially be the heist of their careers. This is especially true if you’re in a large, busy city such as New York or Las Vegas, where theft may be a greater risk.
It’s incredibly important to be aware of this very real threat and take reasonable precautions before, during, and after a trade show.
Keep these tips in mind to boost your security during all phases of jewelry trade shows.
Before the Trade Show
- Check with your insurance company and review your coverage limits.
- Arrange for your line to be shipped to the show by an armored courier service.
- If you can’t have it shipped, immediately utilize the vaults at the location of the trade show—never trust that your hotel safe will suffice.
- Book a room at a reputable hotel and secure all locks on the room doors. Also, use the peephole when someone knocks.
- Be discreet and don’t share your plans or identity with other travelers. Consider creating a cover story, like you’re visiting family or going to a business conference. Get creative and be prepared to give a few specifics in case additional questions are asked about your itinerary.
- Try not to look like a tourist. Get familiar with where you need to go before you depart.
- If the security offered at the trade show is lacking or non-existent, contemplate whether it’s worth the risk to even go in the first place.
During the Trade Show
- Never leave the booth unattended during show hours.
- Provide one-on-one attention to each customer.
- Show only one item at a time. If masks are being worn, it’s a good idea to ask for ID before showing an item.
- Regardless of how many times you must go in and out, your displays should always be locked up.
- Utilize a wrist key holder or other accessory to ensure that your keys are not easily accessible. It will also prevent you from setting them down and forgetting them somewhere.
- Switch thefts are common at trade shows, so carefully re-examine each piece after it was handled by another person.
- Whether it’s with merchandise or markers, trays should always be filled so you can quickly recognize any discrepancies.
- Only wear your badge at the venue or official sponsored events.
After the Trade Show
- Take your badge off immediately after leaving the show so criminals can’t identify you.
- Showing and selling your jewelry is meant for the trade show floor, not informally back at your hotel room after hours.
- For the safety of you and your customers, ship all jewelry that is bought at the show.
- Even if you are not returning with additional merchandise, avoid displaying any bags, cases, or other branded merchandise from show vendors that could potentially make you a target.
- Arrange for a ride to pick you up, and avoid hailing a cab at all costs.
Stay Safe and Secure – Enjoy the Show
To ensure the most productive, headache-free experiences during this highly anticipated trade show season, make sure to create a comprehensive security plan that includes the show safety policy and any checklists you think will come in handy. Then, meet with your staff to review the recommendations and address questions or concerns so your team can get ahead of any potential threats quickly and confidently.
For more safety tips and resources, visit the Risk Services page at jewelersmutual.com and travel safely and securely this trade show season.
Feel free to reach out to [email protected], and one of our loss prevention experts will be happy to assist with recommendations specific to your business.