Hong Kong is the launch pad for three major international toy shows. Toy and play industry citizens start their travels in early to mid-January as they attend events in Hong Kong that include the Hong Kong Toys & Games Fair. At the end of January, exhibitors move their booths, products and bodies to the Speilwarenmesse Nuremberg while they move them at least one more time for the New York Toy Fair.
If you add up the miles of travel involved in attending those shows (I have) it comes to about 17,500 miles and a lot of jet lag. Never-the-less, it is wise to tough it out because how else can buyers see that many exhibitors in that short an amount of time.
How many exhibitors are there? Here is a break out: Hong Kong Fair- 3100 exhibitors (includes: Toys & Games, Baby Products, International Licensing and International Stationery Fairs) ; Spielwarenmesse Nuremberg Toy Fair - 2857 exhibitors and New York Toy Fair - 1000 exhibitors. So, if you look at them all as constituting one giant, global event you are talking 6,957 exhibitors showing over 1 million unique products.
I have had the pleasure of attending all of these show, many times in the same year, and I can tell you that there is something extra you get out of seeing the similarities and differences in how the world plays and thinks about play. Not only that, attending all of these shows provides you with a global view on what is happening; something that can give you an advantage to those who don't attend.
So, fellow travelers, I look forward to seeing you on the road. Good travels.