Exhibitions and trade shows require lots of planning and organisation – once you have chosen your show, booked your space and employed a stand designer and supplier, you need to consider all the other services you might need to make sure your stand looks and functions exactly as you want it to.

It’s worth exploring a stand supplier who can offer you support with all the other show services that you will require.  Those services may include:

  • Electrics
  • Flooring
  • Water, waste and hospitality
  • Stand Furniture
  • Floral and plant hire
  • Wi-Fi
BAE systems Exhibition stand

Show Services also covers other handling and logistics aspects such as:

Exhibition Stand Storage between shows – including an outbound and inbound handling service – if you are unable to store the stand at your company.

  • Exhibition Stand Installation – on-site installation and dismantling of the stand.
  • Pre-show stand preview – to give peace of mind before a show – and a good way to review new configurations and additions.
  • Stand re-configurations – a service whereby new layouts are designed with existing equipment.
  • Insurance – to ensure your stand is covered whilst in storage, in transit and at the show.
  • And finally, complete show management – when all your show services requirements are managed and coordinated by a designated third party.

If you do decide to arrange the show services yourself, these are some of the things you may need to consider:


  • Work out how many power points you will need on the stand – for lighting, computers, plasma screens etc.
  • Mark the required points on a stand layout.
  • Be sure you order plenty of points as it is much more costly to have extra points put in at the up build stage.
  • Make sure you check and physically measure all the electric points once they have been laid to ensure they are in the right place. It’s a lot easier to get something moved before the stand goes up!


  • The first question to consider is do you need a raised floor? This is often essential for wiring – when you have lighting, computers and workstations to get power to your stand. Although, wires can be run along bridges – if you need to save on the cost of a raised floor.
  • In fact, some venues will not allow the carpet to be laid directly onto the floor so you will have to have at least an 18mm platform.
  • Flooring comes in a wide range of finishes, carpet colours and effects – so think of the floor as part of the overall design.
  • Lastly, some venues will require you to have a ramp installed for disabled access – particularly in the US.

Water, waste and hospitality

  • You may need water and waste if you are providing hospitality – but try to avoid anything too elaborate…in our experience hospitality means mess.
  • A fridge may be all that is needed or as we have already said you could consider entertaining people away from the stand.
  • In some instances, you will be required to use the onsite caterers for food and drink.
  • And bear in mind, if you do provide drinks and food on your stand you may need a daily stand cleaning service.

Stand Furniture

  • Consider your furniture carefully. Remember, the more comfortable the chair, the longer people will sit!
  • As a general rule don’t clutter the stand with too much furniture.

Plant and Floral Hire

  • Plants and fresh flowers add a nice touch to most stands.
  • You can either choose to put fresh flowers together yourself or for the same cost hire a potted plant arrangement. Prices range from £20 to £50.


  • Check out charges and usage and calculate them into your budget.

Storage of your stand

If you contract an outside company for this then ensure:

  • The premises are secure and safe and confirm if your goods are insured or not.
  • Check to see if an outbound and inbound handling service is included, as well as inspection and maintenance of the stand after each show.

Consider using your stand supplier to store your display.

Set up and Breakdown

  • Can your personnel do this or not? – If you invest in a portable and user-friendly display system then maximise on these factors – your crew may be able to set up quickly and easily.
  • For more complex and custom type stands it will be essential to use an outside team – just be sure they are insured and capable!

Stand Preview

  • This is normally offered by the stand builder or manufacturer and gives you peace of mind by seeing the completed stand before the show.
  • Remember to enquire about this early on – so that you can build it into your lead times.

Stand re-configuration

  • Many companies look for a portion, if not their entire stand to be re-usable.
  • Before buying a display, check out how easy it is to re-configure the stand and what the company will offer in the way of services to help you do this.

Complete Show Management

  • If you don’t want the headache of organising all these aspects for each show, then employ exhibition project management to look after them for you.
  • You need to know you can trust and rely on an outside party, so try and get a recommendation.
  • Ensure you are absolutely clear about what will and won’t be covered by the company you contract.
  • Usual Management fees are in the region of 15-25%.

Show Manual

  • Use the Show Manual as your bible and make sure you are aware of all the deadlines for ordering services. Most Show Manuals can be found on the show website and require a password to gain access. Show and Venue Regulations
  • Watch out for height restrictions at some venues.
  • If your stand is over 4 metres high you will need to provide structural calculations – proving your stand is completely safe.
  • You also need to provide a risk assessment of your stand, highlighting dangers, and risks that could be faced i.e. suspended items and special effects.

Onsite Costs

  • You may need to pay for onsite handling. If you require a forklift to take goods from the loading bay to your stand you will have to pay.
  • If you are unable to store your cases on your stand and you cannot take them away you will have to pay for onsite storage, however, if you have your stand installed your supplier will be able to remove these cases for the duration of the show.

Building your stand

  • During the build-up, if you have the time then spread your contractors out over a number of days –for instance, book the flooring and electrical contractor for the first day and then the stand build contractor for day two. If you become too ambitious and try to coordinate everything in a tight time frame you could end up with the contractors turning up in the wrong order or too many people there at the same time.
  • Make sure you take copies of all the contracts you filled out to book your services with you to the show. This will help when you go to the Organisers office to chase someone and need to prove the service has been booked and paid for.
  • When you build your stand, start by building the ground level first, rather like laying the foundations of a house. Make sure it fits and is in the right place before you build the next level. Imagine the complications you will face if you build one entire area of the stand and then find out it is in the wrong place and there isn’t enough room for the rest of your stand.

Exhibiting Abroad

  • If you are shipping goods overseas allow plenty of time for your goods to clear Customs and Excise and make sure you have all the right paperwork in place: licences, carnets, visas etc.
  • If you use a nominated freight company they will sort this out for you and will have direct access to the shows’ warehouse storage facility.
  • Watch out for union labour regulations, particularly in the US – you will not be allowed to erect your stand, but you will be allowed to manage the project.
  • Finally, if you are exhibiting overseas and have another show soon after, consider how long it will take for your stand to ship to the next destination. In some instances, it can take a number of weeks to ship your goods home.

As you can see there is quite a lot to think about when planning your exhibition – At Nomadic we offer a full range of exhibition management services for a stress-free exhibiting experience, leaving time for you to concentrate on other parts of your business.  If we can help you please, contact us for more information.