Essen, Germany
1 year
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SPIEL Update

Between 03.10.2024 and 06.10.2024, SPIEL 2024 will take place as a face-to-face event. The trade show will occur in Essen, Germany, at the Messe Essen. The hosting venue will not be equipped with the most up-to-date Covid-19 prevention measures for the time being. This is because the associated pandemic restrictions have been lifted. The organisers will continue to observe the pandemic situation and, if required, adjust the venue's safety regulations.

A Brief Overview of SPIEL 

International Games Event SPIEL, SPIEL for short, brings together the entire community of board game players and creators under one roof in Essen, Germany. The international trade fair presents the latest trends in gaming across all age-group and play-style categories. SPIEL attracts publishers like Board Game Circus, Brain Games Publishing, Game Factory Spiele and Lavka Games, which are looking to debut new titles to much funfair. 

Let’s get you settled for SPIEL in 2023, which is set to break records in the upcoming edition. We work with you to secure the perfect hotel booking in Essen. Do you prefer to be located right by the entrance regardless of how much it costs? Or do you wish to make great savings? It’s our job to make sure you have the best time on your business trip, and this includes booking meeting rooms with A/V equipment, arranging airport transfers and offering rent-a-cars. GETA ltd works with big groups regularly. We welcome groups of over twenty people. 

Book hotels close to Messe Essen in just a few hours and enjoy excellent service. 

Why Your Visit Is Worth It 

SPIEL connects you to your core audience like no other international trade fair. The event opens its doors to gamers at all levels as well as retailers and distributors, which makes it an ideal ground for soliciting sales leads and generating buzz for your new titles. The numbers are quite compelling to help you decide to attend: 

  • 1200+ international exhibitors;
  • 209,000+ international visitors;
  • 53 nationalities represented;
  • 86,000+ sq. m. of exhibition space; 

Industry Relevance 

SPIEL owes its longevity to its long-standing track record as an inclusive and fun event with doors open to everyone, and a marketing savviness rooted in strong partnerships with media outlets in Germany and abroad. The international game fair has been in operation since 1983, when it only attracted 5000 visitors and has quickly morphed into a major procurement platform. It’s a trend setter that arrives every October in Essen, Germany. 

The product portfolio is truly impressive and it captures the wealth of the field. Visitors gain access to interactive games, movement games, adult games, games of skill, toys and t-shirts, action figures and figurines, board games, card games, comic books, action books, original comic artwork, post games and even computer games. 

It’s all about generating sales leads at SPIEL and what better way to do this than claiming a spot at the Novelty Show, which provides an exceptional platform for exhibitors to present their newest games to players, media representatives and retailers. With an event this big, it’s essential to have a designated space only for new product releases in order for buyers to educate themselves on the latest titles and products available. 

The Novelty Show kicks off on Wednesday following a press conference that attracts hundreds of media representatives. Once the doors open, the exhibition welcomes the press, exhibitors, and trade visitors, offering them the opportunity to explore the exciting world of new game releases. Exhibitors are provided with free tables to present their latest titles. They have the freedom to creatively showcase their games in the most compelling manner. If that’s not enough, exhibitors can pay in order to book special areas with more flexibility when it comes to how exhibitors can build their stands. 

Who Are You Going to Meet? 

SPIEL is open to everybody so it’s not surprising to discover the majority of the fair’s audience is end consumers – usually passionate players, professional tournament gamers and families with children. You are there to meet with everyone and gain live feedback on your new launches. SPIEL is also attractive to journalists, game reviewers and retailers who want to improve their stock back home. 

It’s the perfect balance of professional and general public. Fringe areas and events also draw in comic book creators, illustrators, game designers and educators. One of the most interesting programming items is EDUCATOR’S DAY – a whole day committed to the ways that board games can be used with teaching and education. 

Additional Value of Attending 

One of the big highlights of SPIEL is participating in the DSP awards and learning which games will earn this honoured distinction. The DEUTSCHE SPIELE PREIS (DSP, or the German Game Award in English) holds a special place in the gaming community as a player-driven award and stands as the largest community accolade in Germany. It recognizes outstanding games across two categories: family and adult games as well as children's games. 

This prestigious award is selected by the entire gaming community, who cast their votes to determine the most beloved games from the numerous titles released within that year. The winners of the DSP and the DSP best children's game are honoured at the renowned SPIEL event held in Essen – even more welcome publicity for their publishers. 

The opportunity to be a part of the voting process is open to all, allowing individuals to contribute to the decision making and help determine which game will come on top. Voters are encouraged to choose their top five games of the year, along with the best children's game. Eligibility for the award extends to all standalone games released in German for that year. For the 2023 edition, the eligibility window was for May 1, 2022, and April 30, 2023. 

The selection process and rules of the GERMAN GAMES AWARD are inclusive, welcoming the participation of individuals interested in German games residing in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Whether one wishes to vote for their favourite game, provide their professional insights as a critic or journalist, or contribute from within a game store, the award is truly a collective effort involving everyone in the gaming community. 

The DEUTSCHE SPIELE PREIS stands as a celebration of the vibrant and diverse gaming culture in Germany, honouring the outstanding contributions made by game designers, publishers, and enthusiasts. By engaging in the voting process, individuals have the opportunity to shape the narrative and recognize the games that have captivated their imaginations and enriched their gaming experiences throughout the year.

Past editions

SPIEL 2023

05.10.2023 - 08.10.2023


+/- 200 000





Increase in the attendance rate compared to the 2021 edition




Exhibitor countries


Presented new board games




Total Exhibitors


Total Visitors


SQ M of Exhibition Area


Total Exhibitors


Total Visitors


SQ M of Exhibition Area

How to get to SPIEL

On Foot

On Foot

from HBF 35 min walking distance (2.6km)

from Essen/Mülheim Airport - 1h10 min walk (5.3km)


By Car

from HBF - 6 min ride (2.8km)

from Essen/Mülheim Airport - 8-10 min drive (6.5km)


By Public Transport

From HBF it is only 6 min ride with U11

from Essen/Mülheim Airport - there is no direct transportation

(alternatively you can walk ~30 min to Essen Abzweig Flughafen Stop and take Bus 142 for 9 stops, which will take you ~45 min total)