For anyone who has ever stood in a registration line at a coin show or waited for a dealer badge, news that modern technology will be introduced at the Whitman show in Philadelphia in September is welcome.
It will operate something like the airline industry that allows you to print out boarding passes on your home computer the night before a flight, or the registration kiosks once you arrive at the airport.
I have not yet seen a demonstration of how the kiosks work, but anything has to be better than the manual system that has been prevailing since I have been attending coin shows.
For small shows, it does not matter. Crowds are manageable and little time is lost in the registration process, but large shows, especially large shows in a hot market, present the possibility of delays.
I do not want to pick on the Memphis International Paper Money Show, but I would like to use my experience at the last 20 that I have attended to illustrate my point.
For years setting up began at 4 p.m. on Thursday. However, until last year, no dealer credentials were given out until that hour. That resulted in a long line of dealers gathering in an unairconditioned loading area outside the area of the convention hall where the show was to be held.
It was a good time to visit with people in the line, but dealers were anxious to get on with things as they stood there with their overloaded big carts and small floor roller cases that you see at any show.
Last year, credentials were handed out earlier and the line was much shorter.
Think of what an airline style registration would accomplish. I look forward to see how the September Whitman event unfolds.
Imagine that. I used the airline industry as a good example. I hope the shock doesn’t hurt anybody.