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How to Get Supplies to a Trade Show

When attending a trade show, there are a lot of materials that you will need in order to have a successful experience. If you were to get to your trade show and your supplies were not there, it would be a disaster. When preparing for a trade show, one of the main priorities is to be strategic in getting your supplies to the trade show. The goal is to get your items to the trade show on time while still being cost-efficient. Here are a few tips to get your supplies to the trade show for a great trade show experience. 

Plan Ahead

A central theme when it comes to attending a trade show is to plan ahead to make the most of your time at the trade show. Trade show shipping is different from normal freight as getting items from one place to another takes longer. Depending on when and where the trade show will be, you may have to ship your supplies weeks in advance for them to be there on time. Planning ahead gives you the chance to shop around with trade show shippers to see who can get the supplies there when you want them and for a price that you feel good about. 

Keep Track of Paperwork

As you ship out the supplies for the trade show, you will be required to fill out paperwork and keep track of paperwork. You will want to keep a record of all the supplies that are sent and when you get to the trade show you can ensure that you received all the pieces that you need. When packaging up your pallets or crate, it is a good idea to clearly label the outside of the container the following:

  • Point of contact
  • Booth number
  • Phone number
  • Company name
  • Number of pieces (1 of 4, 2 of 4)
  • Arrival day
  • Address for delivery

This will make your items easily identifiable and whoever is in charge of delivery of your items will know exactly where your supplies are supposed to go. 

Few Things to Know About Trade Show Shipping

As mentioned previously, trade show shipping is not like traditional freight. There are a few particular processes that make it different. 

Advance Warehouses

When shipping trade show supplies, they typically will be delivered to an advance warehouses rather than the actual venue. The event staff will give the information about the offsite advance warehouse to the shipper before any shipments are made. Once your supplies have arrived, there will be a holding fee. 

Drayage Fees

The facilities that are in charge of storing, transferring, and delivering your supplies to and from the venue will have you pay drayage fees for their service. If your items are in fewer containers, such as having everything in one crate can keep your drayage costs lower. 

Forced Freight

Not only is it important to have your supplies there on time, but your freight must be picked up by the carrier you hire on time as well. There will be a deadline to have your supplies out of the venue. There are many reasons that freight can be left behind, but it will be taken care of by the carriers of the events. This is called force freight, and the costs associated with this are higher than your average carrier fees. 

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