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Pre-printed Name Badges vs. Onsite Printing and Check-in


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Name badges are an important part of any event. For attendees, they’re the first tool to break the ice while networking. For planners, they help with organization, attendance records and even in creating brand awareness. 

Onsite badge printing is the wave of the future. Modern technology can be used to create a unique, efficient and pleasant check-in experience for you and your guests. Plus, they’ll often help you reduce event costs. However, there are still some benefits to the classic, pre-printed name badges. For a quick comparison of the two, check out our thoughts below. 

Pre-printed name badges

If your event is on the more intimate side (200-500 attendees) pre-printed badges may be the most cost-effective and practical option. For very small events (200 guests or less), keep it simple by working with a printing partner to include only the most important, baseline information, such as name, organization and position. 

Event Pre-printed Name Badges

Pre-printing requires making choices on some of the fun, tangible details, including cardstock, card size, lamination, magnets, lanyards and holders. For events that are greater than 200 guests, you may also want to consider working with your printing partner to include company logos, branding and design elements. Most notably: working with a professional printer frees up your time by not having to prepare badges the night before your event. 

Keep in mind that any errors that call for reprints will require some time, and any walk-ins or last minute additions to the guest list may need a handwritten alternative. This is one reason to explore onsite printing, especially if you plan to hold a larger event. 

Onsite registration, check-in and name badges

If your event is greater than 500 attendees, we suggest embracing onsite registration. Doing so is an easy way to reduce event costs, save time, energy and make your event even more streamlined and personalized

With onsite printing, you won’t have to close registration beforehand, creating even more opportunities for ticket sales! Onsite check-in eliminates long lines and grumpy guests upon entrance. The technology keeps everyone moving and can be up to four times faster than sorting through printed name badges and agendas. 

Best of all, with so much more control to create tags on the spot, you can make real-time corrections and keep it as professional and personalized as you’d like. Including personal agendas, QR codes, and designs are all options to explore. 

HubSpot Video

Of course, helping to save resources and create an environmentally friendly event is the cherry on top! If it’s your first time working with an onsite printer, be sure to have an open dialogue with your partner. Many kiosk vendors will include onsite help to make sure everything runs smoothly. 

How Can MeetingPlay Help?

As always, if you are looking for more guidance on the best option for you and want to talk it over with an expert, MeetingPlay is here to help? Don’t hesitate to schedule a free demo!


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