3 min read

RFID in a Nutshell

What is RFID and how can it add value to an event?

What is RFID and how can it add value to an event?

Many of you have probably heard of RFID and how it can revolutionise an event by enhancing attendees’ experiences whilst making the process more efficient for the organisers. But what is it? How does it work? And where can it add value? Here we answer these questions and more…

What is RFID and how does it work?

RFID stands for Radio Frequency Identification and has been around for many years. In fact, we have all come into contact with it in our daily lives, often without even realising it.

It comprises of a two part system that allows the wireless transfer of information using small micro-chips and an antenna. The micro-chip contains a unique identifier and space to store information. When it is scanned, the information can be accessed and the reader can react accordingly. This may be by recording that micro-chip as seen, storing information held on the micro-chip, displaying a personalised message, or updating the information stored on the micro-chip.

Where is RFID used?

RFID is used in a wide range of situations for a variety of purposes, including:

  • Entry systems

    In workplaces employees place their badge against a reader allowing them entry onto a particular floor or room in a building, or even into the building itself.

  • Transit Systems

    Tickets and cards are used as a means of paying for trips on many transit systems around the world.

  • Retail

    • Security - ever wondered what makes the alarms go off in shops? That’s right, RFID.
    • Contactless bank cards that enable us to make payments use NFC which is an implementation of RFID.
    • Festivals - many have gone completely cashless with RFID wristbands.
  • Restaurants

    At some restaurants, customers are issued with a card on entry which tallies their consumption. They then hand in the card at the till to pay.

  • Passports

    e-Passports contain an RFID chip storing personal information, including biometric data, which is read at border control.


The versatility of the system means it is highly adaptable in an event environment where it can be used for a variety of functions, such as:

  • Attendance Management

    Attendees can sign in for the event, or individual sessions, with those trying to register for the wrong session refused entry.

  • Seating Plans

    A simple tap of an RFID badge can show a guest exactly where they are sat, avoiding the need for large printed seating plans or additional screens.

  • Lead Retrieval

    Much faster and more convenient than bar or QR codes, exhibitors scan the visitor’s badge registering their visit and can add notes about their conversation.

  • Security / Identification

    When logging on to a tablet, the paperless solution can show personalised information to the delegate. Notes and private messages are linked to their RFID badge and lost cards can be deactivated immediately.

Would you like to know more about Event Technology?

We love talking to people about events and technology, so please do get in touch if you would like to bounce an idea or two around. We would love to hear from you.

Contact us today for more information.

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