The city of Düsseldorf, Germany rolls out the red carpet for visitors to ProWein, International Trade Fair Wines and Spirits, which takes place March 24-26, 2013. For attendees from America, here are some tips on attending the event.
Getting to the Fairgrounds and around Düsseldorf:
There is easy and direct transport to the fairgrounds on the local tram system (U78 and U79). In addition, bus No. 722 serves the East and South Entrances and from the airport, Bus No. 896 connects to all fairgrounds entrances.
Visitor, exhibitor and press entrance passes to the show allow free use of all public transportation on all days of ProWein 2013 within the Rhine-Ruhr regional network (VRR) of Düsseldorf (exhibitors can also ride free of charge two days before and after the show).
Taxis are widely available but must be boarded at taxi stands. It’s common for single passengers to ride up front, and the guide for tips is to round up to the next full Euro amount.
Rental cars are available from Avis, Europcar, Enterprise, Hertz, National, Sixt and other companies; offices are located at the Düsseldorf airport, the main train station and several downtown locations. On the main streets in Düsseldorf, “Messe Düsseldorf” signs show the way to the fairgrounds; parking signs will lead to one of the fairgrounds’ 12 parking lots.
At the show:
Entrance passes and show directories can be purchased online at www.prowein.com in advance of the show at reduced rates (Euro 30 each for a 1-day pass, Euro 54 each for a 3-day pass) or on show site at regular rates (Euro 40 each for a 1-day pass, Euro 65 each for a 3-day pass).
There are electronic visitor guidance and information system monitors in each hall which make it easy to find the location of every exhibitor and product category. In addition, the ProWein app is a helpful tool to navigate the show.
You might need an umbrella around town, but at the trade fair, the exhibit halls are linked by protected walkways, moving sidewalks and shuttle buses.
Located in the middle of the fairgrounds is a food store, hardware store and telecommunication store (where vouchers for wireless access can be purchased) as well as a post office, bank and travel agency.
Germany in general:
Shops are generally open from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday. Larger department stores are often open until 8 p.m. on weekdays and until 6 p.m. on Saturday. All stores are closed on Sunday.
Banks are generally open from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. (Thursdays to 5:30 p.m.); the Euro is the single currency for the European Union Nations, including Germany. The Euro comes in denominations of Euro 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 bills and Euro 1 and 2 and 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents coins. Your best bet is to access an ATM when you arrive.
Asking for a quick service in a non fast-food restaurant is considered impolite; water does not accompany the meal but can be ordered by the bottle; tipping: service charge is included in the bill (but a small tip should be handed to the waitress/waiter directly).
A brochure about German business customs and practices can be ordered from Messe Düsseldorf North America free of charge.
For further information on visiting or exhibiting at ProWein 2013, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, 150 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL 60601.