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Getting Early-Bird Discounts for Your Next Trade Show

planning a trade show budget

If you’re looking to save money on your trade show costs, the solution is simple: start early. Many people are unaware of how time affects the trade show exhibiting process. But, it’s everything. If you don’t leave yourself enough time, you’ll end up rushing through the design and fabrication of your exhibit and miss deadlines. This isn’t just inconvenient – it costs you money. 

By getting your project done early, you can earn trade show discounts that significantly reduce your spending. Below we share a few examples of how an early-bird attitude can work in your favor. 

Cheaper Registration Fees 

Once you pick the shows you want to attend, sign up for them right away. Most trade shows and industry events offer discounts for early registration. As it gets closer to the date of the show and more people sign up, the discounts go away. Pay attention to “early bird deals” for your favorite trade shows because only some offer them. 

Better Exhibit Spaces 

Another benefit to planning early is that you get your first pick of exhibit space. The best spaces are snapped up quickly – and the worst ones are left for last. By registering early, you can get the booth location you want. Don’t just pay attention to the size and layout, but also make sure that the trade show booth is in an accessible location where lots of traffic will pass by.

Hotel and Travel Discounts 

The logistics of trade shows cost a pretty penny, especially if you have a large group going. To save money on hotels, airfare, food costs, etc., it pays to plan early. 

Check with the show contact or website to see if there are preferred service providers. Preferred providers have partnered with the venue to offer special discounts to exhibitors who book their hotel and airfare early. For example, a nearby hotel may offer discounted rooms until the space runs out. You can also get tickets to anticipated events and sports games that can be used for clients, industry leaders and others. 

Lower Prices for Event Services

It’s also possible that you can get some event services at a reduced rate if you book early. Ask the show contact about using vendors for cleaning services, electrical services and/or material handling and dismantling services. If there are no discounts available or the prices are steep, you’ll have time to find an alternative solution. 

Improved Exhibit Design 

It takes time to design and build an exhibit, and you don’t want to rush it. This is how crucial details are missed. By starting early, you’ll have the time to work closely with your trade show booth design team for customized graphics, forward-thinking booth technology, custom lighting and sound equipment and sturdy panels. If it’s too close to the event, you may not be able to get the graphics and customizations you want, and you may be charged rush fees. 

If you’re planning on exhibiting this year, start planning for your trade show now. You’ll stretch your budget further and get higher quality results that help you stand out from the crowd. To discuss your plans for a new trade show display, contact IGE for a consultation