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RFID Technology & Event Management: The Pros And Cons

Key Takeaways:

  • RFID stands for Radio Frequency Identification. 
  • It is a device that detects and tracks tags attached to items using electromagnetic fields.
  • This technology is gaining popularity in event management.
  • RFID can help improve event security and prevent ticket fraud.
  • RFID can also help you keep track of attendees, staff, and inventory.
  • However, RFID technology can be expensive and difficult to implement.

RFID technology is becoming more popular by the day, and for a good reason. It has a ton of potential applications, including event management. This blog post by Event Ready will discuss the pros and cons of using RFID technology for event management. We will also talk about how RFID can help improve your event management process.

What is RFID?

Radiofrequency identification or RFID is a contactless technology that uses radio waves to identify and track objects. RFID tags consist of two parts: an antenna and a chip. The antenna picks up radio waves and transmits the data to the chip, which stores information about the object. 

RFID tags come in two types: active and passive. Active RFID tags have a power source, while passive RFID tags do not. This technology has various applications, including inventory management, security, and tracking.

What Kinds of Events Can Utilize This Technology?

Large-scale events with an unlimited number of participants and registrations are ideally suited for RFID entry systems. RFID attendee tracking systems can record relevant data for a variety of events, including the following:

  • Trade expos
  • Conferences/Exhibitions/Competitions
  • Other business events

Any large-scale meetings can employ RFID tags to transmit additional event data, such as tickets, feedback, competitions, entertainment, or gamification strategies, among other things.

The Benefits of Using RFID in Event Management

Both guests and event organizers may profit greatly from RFID technology.

Benefit 01: Quickly admits attendees

Nobody likes to stand in line. One of the finest features of RFID is that it can significantly speed up event admittance. The Snow Globe Music Festival could scan more than 20 persons per minute at each entrance after switching to RFID. That amounts to more than 1,200 persons per scanner each hour.

Attendees can enter via RFID by simply waving their wristband or badge over a sensor. No more rummaging through handbags to find tickets or struggling to get crumbled or damp barcodes to scan. The technology can easily allow access to several zones within an event or handle re-entry for multi-day events (like a VIP area).

Benefit 02: Improves your event with real-time insights

Another advantage of RFID is that it provides live event data. You can use this information to enhance the attendee experience in real time or make changes to future events. For example, you can use RFID tracking to monitor crowd flow and adjust security or staffing accordingly.

You can also collect information about what attendees are doing at your event. This data can help you understand what’s working and what isn’t. Maybe a certain exhibit is getting more traffic than expected, or there’s a long line for the restroom. This information can improve the event overall or make changes on-the-fly.

Benefit 03: Eliminates fraud and counterfeiting

Due to RFID chips, which are almost impossible to duplicate compared to traditional print-at-home tickets, counterfeit tickets are a relic of the past. Additionally, you may assist guests without worrying about copies if they misplace their tickets. Since each ticket is linked to a unique ID, you may immediately deactivate a lost wristband or badge and provide a replacement.

Benefit 04: Go paperless or cashless

Forget about standing in line at the ATM or people repeatedly pulling out their wallets. They may now pay for meals, beverages, or goods with only a wrist tap. Before the event, attendees may add their payment information to their RFID tags, making it simpler than ever to make a purchase. Additionally, visitors can stop worrying about loss or theft and concentrate on enjoying your event because they don’t need to carry cash or tickets around with them.

Benefit 05: Upgrade attendee engagement

There are several opportunities to interact onsite once attendees get their RFID badges or wristbands. The most well-liked are RFID-enabled picture booths. Attendees may easily email themselves their photos at the photo booth by just touching their wristband or badge. This choice is particularly well-liked for sponsor activations as a method of interacting with guests and gathering their contact information for lead generation.

Benefit 06: Enhances the VIP experience.

You might wish to provide VIP clients with enhanced customer service. Thanks to RFID, you can respond to their needs wherever they are on the premises. When VIPs experience problems, your employees can quickly look up and replace RFID wristbands using mobile devices.

RFID provides new avenues for generating income by providing onsite VIP enhancements. In the future, RFID may rapidly elevate a person’s access level to enter a VIP area. As a result, your attendees will be happier, and you’ll make more money.

Drawbacks of RFID in Event Management:

Drawback 01: RFID might not be necessary

If your event is small, you might not need RFID. The technology can be expensive, and the return on investment (ROI) may not be immediately apparent.

Drawback 02: Substances like metal & fluids can impact the signals

RFID labels and tags are customized to the size and materials used in your event. For instance, metal will disable the RFID antenna, preventing the tag from transmitting. That is why there is a special RFID tag for metals which can be expensive. Additionally, liquid items may also degrade the signal’s dependability causing trouble in management.

Drawback 03: RFID can be intrusive

Some people might not want to be tracked by RFID, even for safety. If you plan to use RFID at your event, let attendees know ahead of time and give them the option to opt out.

RFID can be a helpful tool for event management, but it may not be suited for every event. Think about the advantages and disadvantages before deciding. And, as always, test RFID technology before using it at your event to ensure it meets your needs.

Do you have trouble organizing all the onsite details? Event Ready can help!

We offer onsite services for both big and small events in Columbus. We also provide options for producing customized badges. This comprises RFID badges that also contain individualized itineraries and customized tickets.

Request a free demo today!