Helsinki City Running Day takes a significant step towards a more environmentally friendly event, when the bib numbers are printed on site when the runner arrives to pick up one’s number from the race office. This way, only exactly the same amount of bib numbers are printed as there are participants who show up at the starting line. Unnecessary waste does not accumulate.
With the reform, the amount of paper and cardboard waste related to the distribution of numbers will be reduced by about 90 percent, and mixed waste will not be generated at all. When transporting pre-printed numbers is completely eliminated, logistics emissions are significantly reduced.
From the participant’s point of view, picking up the bib number is just as easy as before. The participant will receive a QR code and information about the bib number by e-mail and text message. In the race office, the official reads the code with a reading device and prints the bib. At the same time, safety pins for attaching the number, as well as a tie for the bag drop tag, will be distributed. The pick-up process is as fast as before, if not even faster, because the bibs for all running distances are printed at all number pick-up points. So the runner can always choose the shortest queue. One person can still pick up the numbers for other runners, too; others send their QR code message to the person picking up the numbers, and he/she gets the codes by showing others’ numbers as well.
The QR code also contains information about the event shirt (if included). As a removable part of the bib number, there is also a tag for the bag drop.
With the new practice, even last-minute registrants will get their first name printed in the bib number. Previously, the name was printed only for those who had registered at least two weeks prior to the event.