CES Attendees From China Must Test Negative to Enter Las Vegas Tech Show Early

Posted on: December 29, 2022, 06:59h. 

Last updated on: December 29, 2022, 07:21h.

The 2023 CES (Consumer Electronics Show) is only a week out. The largest and most economically important annual exhibition in Southern Nevada, Las Vegas Strip casinos are eagerly anticipating the return of the first full in-person CES show since the pandemic.

CES Las Vegas COVID-19 testing rules US China
CES 2022 attendees receive their convention badges and COVID-19 testing kits upon arrival at Harry Reid International Airport on Jan. 3, 2022. CES will test attendees coming from China if they arrive early before the 2023 show officially begins on Thursday, Jan. 5. (Image: Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Planning officials expect more than 100,000 people to arrive in Las Vegas next week for the Thursday, Jan. 5, through Sunday, Jan. 8 CES. Though still a far cry from the estimated 170K visitors who attended CES in 2019, the 2023 event is expected to feel more like a CES convention than the show’s previous three shows.

But with COVID-19 spreading uncontrollably throughout China, CES organizers are following the US government’s lead in taking precautions. A day after the US announced that travelers from China will need to present a negative COVID-19 test before boarding a plane bound for the US beginning Jan. 5, CES says early arrivals from the People’s Republic will not sidestep the forthcoming federal mandate.

Mandatory Testing

CES said that attendees arriving early in Las Vegas for next week’s convention will need to undergo COVID-19 testing in order to receive their badges.

CES explained that travelers from China, Macau, and Hong Kong arriving between Jan.1-4 in Las Vegas will need to present a negative test conducted within the past 48 hours. CES will also provide free rapid antigen testing administered by health professionals at the Las Vegas Convention Center’s South Hall beginning at 7 a.m. local time on Jan. 2.

Though CES officially begins next Thursday, Jan. 5, there are numerous pre-show events leading up to opening day. For people arriving at CES on Jan. 5 or later, no testing will be needed, as the US government’s directive will be in effect.

“We encourage all participants to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and the flu before arriving at CES. Onsite, rapid test kits will be available, and we encourage masking,” a CES release informed.

Touchless Where Possible

CES is a consumer electronics event where the world’s leading tech firms will show off their latest and greatest inventions and products. CES itself says the show is technologically advanced when it comes to health safety. Show organizers say the 2023 edition of CES will provide “an expanded touchless experience.”

As producer of the world’s most influential tech event, we are proactively committed to creating an environment that reduces health risks for our attendees,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the Consumer Technology Association. “In-person events such as CES are critical to advancing business.”

“A more touchless venue experience at CES 2023 will provide a roadmap for future industry events on health and safety efforts for attendees,” Shapiro concluded.

If CES attracts more than 100,000 attendees, the show would be the largest in-person convention in the US since early 2020.