If you are involved in tradeshows—whether it be as an exhibitor, attendee, or like us as a designer and fabricator of booths and displays—you have almost certainly heard a horror story about projects going awry. Recently, many exhibitors have been coming to us for help with incomplete work or complications from previous display fabricators. The devil is always in the details and we want to provide you with some of the insights we gained through our experience and give you some advice to exorcise the demons of improper planning.
Early Dates for Advanced Deadlines
As an exhibitor, chances are you have heard of the “early order deadline date”. General Contractors will designate an order deadline date to ensure—given their workforce—they will be able to comfortably complete your order before the event. If you fail to place your order before the designated deadline the rates for all services will increase dramatically. Be sure to pay close attention to the date for your potential production company, because they are not all created equal. Some companies have unreasonable order deadlines in order to charge higher rates for a longer period of time.
Increased Drayage Rates
There are a couple of reasons some company’s drayage rates could become annoyingly high. Some of the larger contractors have monopolized specific areas meaning they control the rates. Many smaller contractors will need to temporarily lease warehouse space. Recently, we’ve been hearing many people being faced with handling fees way above the national average. Watson Productions has multiple locations in cities across America, therefore we aren’t subject to the whims of the largest companies.
Relationships between “the official freight company for Expo X” and that show’s general contractor are no secret. If there is a financial gain for the contractor to have freight forced and the contractor has a demonstrated pattern of turning away exhibitors’ preferred carrier, it enters the world of questionable practices.
Inadequate Floor Plans or Venue Knowledge
As some of you may already know, floor plans occasionally fail to account for structural concerns like columns. We’ve seen contractors show up with equipment that was unable to fit inside the doors of the building! As an exhibitor, you should ask every question possible to ensure you and your contractor know what to expect.
With extensive knowledge of the happenings within the trade show business, we prepare for everything here at Watson Productions. Visit our website: https://www.watsonproductions.com/ for more information or call our office (516)334-9766 to see what we can do to help you minimize your cost and maximize your exposure!