Setting Up Your Trade Show Budget – What You Need To Do

Trade show budgets have to be carefully created and there are two key elements to consider. First, you must know everything a trade show budget has to include. Second, you should learn about how you can stretch your trade show budget without harming your performance. A trade show budget can be broken down into these elements:

  • Booth space (from 29% to 36%)- allocated by the trade show organizers.


  • Show services (17%) – this includes cleaning, carpet and padding, power, phone and fax lines, waste removal etc.

  • Exhibit design (form 11% to 16%) – this includes materials, banners, draping, lights and other accessories.

  • Shipping (12%) – this must include freight and drayage.

  • Travel and other expenses (13%) – this would include accommodation, meals, flights and transportation.

  • Advertising and promotions (12%) – this includes email, printings, direct mail and giveaways.

smart budgeting
Now that you have an idea on how you can break your budget down, there are some tips that you need to consider when setting your budget and trying to reduce expenses:

  1. Make a list of every item and service that will cost you money and set a reasonable budget. Be realistic, don’t waste money on a larger booth space if you cannot afford all the expenses that come with the expansion.

  3. Decide if it is a better option renting than purchasing. Renting a portable display saves you the costs of building an exhibit. You can also consider leasing if you will attend several trade shows in a year. Leasing providers offer you flexible payment plans of three-year payments for instance. Besides, leasing is much better for your tax savings because they are classified as expenses and not as capital purchases.

  5. Book your booth space early to get special prices or discounts. Early booking can save up to 20% of your budget.

  7. Advanced ordering of trade show services can prevent you from premium show service fees. Pay as soon as possible for the services you requested to avoid late fees.

  9. Reduce your accommodation and traveling expenses by booking in advance. Many hotels, airlines and car rentals offer discounts for those who book early.

  11. Make a good use of the options offered by trade show organizers. Many of them offer free or cost-effective advertising services.

  13. Get information about all the advantages you have as exhibitor and make sure your providers will respond if you have last-minute mishaps.

Remember, it’s very important to set up a reasonable budget and include all kinds of expenses into it. Also start your planning process at least 6 months before the trade show begins. This will ensure you get the most successful booth.


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