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6 Travel Tips for Trade Show Exhibitors

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If you’ve traveled enough for trade shows or just in general, you’ve picked up some tips or best practices to help make your travel cheaper and easier. Or maybe you’re reading this because you’re a bit of a rookie and need some tips. Either way, here are some good tips for traveling trade show exhibitors that hopefully save you some money or at the least, a few headaches.

Have one person book: If you’re bigger than a staff of one, it’s probably best to let one person handle all the travel arrangements. If everyone is staying at the same hotel and flying together, it will be easier for one person to build the itinerary together at once.

Bundle travel: Speaking of building together at once – there are handfuls of travel booking sites that exist that allow you to book flights, hotels and rental cars all at one stop. At the least, the prices and deals they offer are worth shopping around for.

Fly into an airport a few miles out: When possible, if there is an airport that’s a few miles away from your destination. Not every city is going to have another airport within range that makes sense, but it’s worth checking into if it can help you save some money on your flight. You also must consider the cab/gas fare it will take to get back to your destination as well.

Room at your conference...or don’t: Some people like to book their rooms at the same venue the conference or trade show is at (or the one working with the show exclusively). You’ll likely pay a bit more but you’re paying for the convenience. You really don’t need a rental car or use the cab much. But, depending on the rate of rooms at the venue, the cheaper option may be to book one elsewhere. Always explore all your options when it comes to the possibility of saving money.

Buy airline tickets on a Tuesday: If you search around enough, you’ll find the best time of the week to buy airline tickets is on a Tuesday. Buying flights around lunch and dinner times as well as early morning or red-eye flights might also prove to be cheaper. Also, try to buy 30 or so days in advance if possible.

Ship some items to your hotel: Hotels have caught up over the years on this practice and you can’t ship large display items there, but there are smaller items you can ship to hotels and save money on the cost. If the package as c/o (care of) on it and you let the hotel know that it is being shipped, they’ll accept the package. If you’re lucky, you won’t be charged but the hotel or just a little. Either way, if you find out beforehand that they will accept the package, their charges might be less than normal shipping costs.

Bonus tips!

  • Ask your hotel about cheap places to eat
  • Make sure your room has free or included Wi-Fi
  • Check the weather before you pack
  • Dress for success during travel
  • Request and return rental cars with full tank of gas