When It’s All Said and Done

01/26/13 by Brandon

You’ve been planning it for months, and now it’s all over.  You have time and money invested, and you feel it was well spent.  The last attendee has left your booth, and you look around to see the work still in front of you – the dismantling of your booth.

After a long day on your feet talking with attendees, the last thing you may feel like doing is taking down everything.  Fortunately, that’s what I & D Contractors are for!  These Installation and Dismantling companies specifically help businesses with their booth setup prior to the show and breakdown after.  These clearly will add to your expenses, but there are ways to work with them to save on these costs.

Know the Facts

For many of these I & D Contractors, they charge an hourly minimum.  There are overhead costs that they absorb for equipment, transportation, etc, so they have to recoup these costs in their minimum requirements.  However, if they are already working with other exhibitors at the show, they may waive these minimums.  Make sure you ask about these requirements to see if they can be waived.

Also, many of these companies have union contracts.  If you are using a Full Service Display House, they will likely already have certain union contracts and may be able to negotiate a better deal for you.  Talk with them before proceeding with any contract.

Timing can be everything for your I & D Contractors.  Ask when their breaks are scheduled to avoid paying for hours they will be relaxing on your dime.  Make sure you verify when overtime pay will start and try to schedule your installation and dismantling before then.

Look at Alternatives

If you have a relatively simple exhibit display, you may only need a couple hours worth of work.  You should talk with the Trade Show General Contractor to see if you can pay him for the amount of work you need.  You may end up coming out cheaper this way, than contracting with the I & D Contractor.

However, if you have a more complex display system, it might be worth it to pay for the I & D Contractor.  They are typically able to provide you with more lead men and specialized attention to your booth.  Consider the value you have invested in your exhibit when deciding which option is best for you.

Consider Fabric

Custom made fabric exhibits can save you money in a variety of ways, including installation and dismantling.  These are lightweight, compact, and much easier (and cheaper) to transport.  Because of this, you may find that the hours of help you need from a contractor are drastically reduced.  Additionally, these do not cost any more to produce per square foot than traditional designs, are washable, and are less susceptible to damage.  If you are looking to save money throughout the exhibiting process, including setup and breakdown, you should look into a fabric design.

At the end of the day, it comes down to what your time and energy are worth.  Simply investing a couple of hours in a contractor to help you install and dismantle your booth will leave you with more energy and time to focus on your attendees and promoting your business.  If you need any help talking through your options and helping plan out how you can save money throughout your trade show experience, contact Exhibit Edge!  We know the ropes and are eager to help guide you through them!