Tucson Gem Show Shopping Tips!

The Tucson Gem Show is my happy place!  I took my first trip out West to attend the gem show back in 2008.  Since then, I’ve built my jewelry business from the inspiration fueled by this amazing event!  If you're planning your first trip to the Gem Show, this guide is for you!


 1) Be prepared for extreme temperature swings.    Since Tucson is in the desert, it is usually warm and sunny during the day while your shopping and cold at night.  The temperature can really drop once the sun goes down!
2) Wear comfy shoes!!!  This is an absolute must!  The Gem Show is comprised of many shows that are scattered through out the city, and you’ll want to cover A LOT of ground!
3) What to pack: backpack, water bottle (hopefully reusable), sunscreen, hat.
4) Get a map of the Gem Show.  My favorite strip is along the freeway starting from the Days Inn all the way through the African Village.  And 22nd St show (on the other side of the freeway).
5) DON’T try to see the whole show!  You’ll just get overwhelmed!  Pick a few shows to see and spend some quality time there.
6) BRING CASH!  Cash is king!  Gem dealers come from all over the world and many of them do not accept credit cards.
7) Ask questions.  Take notes!  Get to know your gem dealers!  And collect business cards in case you want to reorder!
MY FAVORITE PLACE to hang out after the show: the Congress Hotel!