Planning Your Gamescom Budget

We provide an overview of the expenses that indie exhibitors can expect at Gamescom – from the exhibition itself to transport and accommodation.

As the world’s largest event for computer and video games, Gamescom offers developers and publishers the perfect opportunity to present their projects to a wide audience. With 320,000 visitors in 2023, the event has nearly reached pre-pandemic levels. Additionally, last year saw a new record for digital access – a trend that’s likely to continue.

While participating in Gamescom can significantly boost attention and reach, it does come with various costs.

It’s no surprise that many studios want to use Gamescom as a platform. Especially for indie developers, who often struggle to be seen alongside the industry’s big players and fly under the radar, the international event is an excellent chance to gain visibility, get unfiltered feedback from the community, and network. While participating in Gamescom can significantly boost attention and reach, it does come with various costs. These include not only expenses for the exhibition itself but also secondary costs that need to be considered. Here’s an overview.

Exhibition Stand, Equipment, and Branding

The Indie Area at Gamescom is specifically designed for independent developers. Home of Indies, a partner of Gamescom, offers small and young studios the chance to present themselves with their own booth in this area. Three options are available to suit different budgets:

  • Booth S: smallest option with an area of 1 m², one gaming station, price: € 3,099.00
  • Booth M: medium option with an area of 4 m², two gaming stations, bar stools/chairs, and a sideboard, price: € 4,999.00
  • Booth L: largest option with an area of 8 m², up to four gaming stations, high tables, bar stools/chairs, sofas/armchairs, and a sideboard, price: €8,699.00

All booths have an appealing black design and are carpeted. They also include a lockable cabinet for storing belongings during the exhibition. The rental price covers electricity consumption and additional costs for cleaning (once per night) and security services.

Additional costs may arise from renting extra furniture (tables, chairs, sofas, sideboards), gaming equipment and monitors, as well as individual branding.

  • Furniture: We recommend renting at least one bar stool so you don’t have to stand all day. Two bar stools are better for more comfortable conversations with visitors. The booth’s capacity should be considered when adding more furniture. M and L booths offer more options than the S booth due to space constraints.
  • Hardware: For basic equipment, we recommend our hardware package, which includes a laptop, curved monitor, keyboard, mouse, and mouse pad. This saves you from transporting equipment and associated costs. If you want to add a TV monitor, remember it will take up additional space and require a TV stand, which adds to the cost.
  • Branding: Branding makes your booth as unique and striking as it should be. It helps you to present your studio in the best possible light. Focus on visible areas; if visitors are likely to stand in front of the backwall and block the logo, it’s better to brand the sidewalls. Home of Indies offers several options and handles implementation.

The costs for furniture, hardware, and branding depend on the individual setup. We’re happy to send a price list and advise on the best options for your specific needs.

Communication, Daily Travel, and Parking

A well-equipped and branded booth is the foundation of a successful presentation, but it’s not the only expense. Communication costs can arise if you rely on mobile data for internet and phone use. For exhibitors from abroad, local SIM cards or mobile hotspots can be useful to avoid roaming charges while their stay in Germany. Gamescom offers venue-wide Wi-Fi, but if you prefer to be independent, you can rent your own Wi-Fi through the regional provider NetCologne, which incurs additional costs.

For exhibitors driving to the event by car, parking fees are a significant cost. To save money, invest in a parking ticket. A ticket costs € 45 and covers a designated parking spot for the entire event. Public transport is another option, with an ÖPNV ticket included with the exhibitor pass, valid for five days. Alternatively, you can take a taxi or use a car-sharing service, which also incurs costs.

Many networking events and side activities during Gamescom are free for exhibitors.

An exhibitor pass allows access to the entire venue, unlike trade visitors or day ticket holders who must decide where to go in advance. However, some areas, like the Indie Business Area, require being on the guest list even with an exhibitor pass. Many networking events and side activities during Gamescom are free for exhibitors. An exception is the Thursday exhibitor party featuring top industry figures, with a €100 entrance fee – a worthwhile investment.

Accommodation and Catering

Accommodation is one of the most expensive costs referring to Gamescom, because prices are usually doubling or tripling during that time. We advise booking as early as possible, ideally a year in advance, on the last day of the current event, if you plan to attend the following year. Last-minute deals are almost non-existent due to high demand, so hotels, hostels, and B&Bs rarely have leftover rooms.

Catering is another important consideration. Always have water and snacks on hand during the exhibition. The Indie Business Area offers a small lounge for meetings with drinks (soft drinks, coffee, tea) and snacks, but access requires a reservation. It’s allowed to bring your own food and drinks into the venue, except for alcohol. Bringing your own provisions can help to save money.

Travel and Transport Costs, Customs and Import Duties

Travel and transport costs can take a significant portion of the budget. Early bookings and group rates for flights and trains can save money. However, the greater the distance, the higher the cost. Transporting equipment and tech from outside the EU to Germany may incur customs and import duties. To avoid complications, label each shipment carefully, or it might get held up at customs.

A transport insurance policy can be worthwhile to cover costs in case of damage or loss. If you ship some equipment or luggage ahead of time, consider the storage costs for the duration.

Costs that Pay off

Exhibiting at Gamescom can undoubtedly be expensive. Therefore, it’s crucial to be aware of all potential costs and know where you can save money. Nevertheless, the investment for indie exhibitors pays off. Gamescom is a unique platform to showcase your games to a wide audience, make valuable contacts, and gain visibility in the gaming industry. In the long run, the benefits far outweigh the costs.

Let's connect !

Christiane Gehrke

Senior Event Communications & Sales Manager


Agentur für Messen & Kommunikations GmbH

+49 170 953 22 97

Contact booth constructor

EXEV GmbH Exhibition and Events
D-50859 Koeln

Tel. +49 2234 43 52 82 5