Event Wristbands: What They Do for Me

Tyvek® wristbands used to mean pretty much one thing, as far as I was concerned. You know those paper-plastic bracelets they stick on your wrist, which don’t come off unless you cut them off. It wasn’t so long ago that I thought they were meant exclusively to keep kids away from the bar at large events. At big festivals, we’d often flash our I.D.s to get one, which was usually printed with the logo of some large beer company. Event Wristbands meant beer.

That was before I became involved in events from the other side: the planning aspect. No doubt, from a liability standpoint, over-21 wristbands are still a great asset. They keep me and my bartenders safe from teenagers (you’d be surprised at the number of teens sporting a few gray hairs, or even a bald spot) but they do a lot more. What do I use them for?

  • VIP Passes—if there are private rooms or side events, I can keep them exclusive by creating unique wristbands available only to those who pay for the VIP Pass
  • Backstage Security—when I’ve booked a popular band, it’s important to keep that backstage area secure, so distinctive wristbands are issued to musicians and those authorized to be back stage
  • Staff and Volunteers—my guests and I can easily identify official representatives of the event if I choose a vivid color for their wristbands; a lost child knows who to ask for help, and I can identify my people at a glance
  • Event Passes—sometimes I don’t issue tickets in advance, so what’s the point of offering them at the gate? A wristband serves as proof of payment, so we can determine with ease if someone has jumped a fence

This last use surprises some people, who consider these recyclable wristbands something of a luxury. First of all, when I buy them in bulk, I usually get a nice discount from the manufacturer. They’re not expensive at all. In fact, they’re really cheap: substantially cheaper than printing event tickets: we’re talking in the realm of 8 or 9 cents a piece, for a wristband custom printed with the name of my event and my sponsor’s logo. They’re also harder to counterfeit, since they’re made from DuPont’s™ unique Tyvek® material. And I still imprint them with the name and logo of my event, or of my sponsor, for greater visibility.

My favorite thing about party wristbands? I know I’ve hosted a really successful event when I see someone proudly sporting my event wristband a few days after the festival’s ended!