Trade Show Tips

Exhibiting 101 – The Exhibitor’s Manual


    The exhibitor’s manual is your guide to everything you need to know about show logistics including dates, times, locations, restrictions, and admission. Be especially aware of set up and take down times and power supply availability. All of the forms to set up booth services are located right here with deadline dates. Most shows offer three prices – early bird discount pricing, after deadline full retail "no deal" pricing and the dreaded "at the show" have your credit card ready pricing. Complete and submit your paperwork early for substantial discounts.

    The exhibitor manual explains all of the show rules … familiarize yourself with them and plan to follow them. There are "show policemen" everywhere. Remember that the rules change according to the venue city – most are unionized, but some are not – and the show management. Show management decides whether an inline booth can be taller than 8′ high – or which booth spaces are allowed hanging signs. Don’t plan to take your hanging sign without checking the rules. Example – many shows in Orlando are not allowed hanging signs. Check the height of your booth space. Example – at Moscone in San Francisco the ceiling takes dips in many areas that do not allow tall structures, even if you are in a non-restricted island space based on the show rules. Also remember that you can ask for a variance … if it is a reasonable request, you ask early enough and you speak nicely.

    Perfect timing is critical for trade show planning. When you’re planning for a show of any size, the logistical details can seem overwhelming. Use the time-line form that is in most exhibitor manuals. Also, it is important to know who is responsible for what at the show: Show Management handles the rules, show hours, badges, security, and lead retrieval devices. The designated Show Decorator (also called the Official Contractor or General Contractor) handles furniture, carpet, labor, drayage/freight. The Facility handles cleaning, electric, restrooms, concessions, telephones and parking.

    Do not hesitate to contact Show Management with any questions – you are their client and they are there to service your needs.


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