First-time Exhibitors

As a first-time exhibitor, we want to make sure your exhibition experience is as successful as possible. Below are frequently used terms and a checklist you can use to help navigate the complicated process of arranging your exhibit space.

Frequently Used Terms

  • Exhibitor Console The Exhibitor Console* is your starting point for all important information. You can find everything you need to Exhibit here. See below for more information on what is included and how to log in.
  • Exhibitor Services Kit The Exhibitor Services Kit has many different names including ESK, Service Kit, Exhibitor Services Manual, ESM or Service Manual. Whenever any of these terms are used, it is in reference to your GES Exhibitor Services Kit. The ESK is where you can find rules and regulations, order booth furnishings, accessories, find shipping addresses, access important dates and deadlines and much more!
  • Exhibitor Appointed Contractor An exhibitor appointed contractor (EAC) is a company other than the event general contractor or official service provider that requires access to a booth during installation and dismantling. The EAC may only provide services in the facility that are not designated by the facility as exclusive to a designated provider, or by the show organizer in a contract as an exclusive service for the general or official service provider or other 3rd party.

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First-Time Exhibitor Checklist

1. Utilize the Exhibitor Console* -

Each exhibitor has access to an exhibitor console on the event website. Your console is a personalized tool you can use to access all of the information you will need to plan for the event.

The console includes:
a.     Edit Booth Info – Manage the information that appears on your online listing so attendees know to visit you on the show floor
b.     My Account – Print a copy of your account statement, see when the next payment is due or make a payment through the website
c.     Get Badges! – Register for badges and view your lead retrieval scans
d.     Exhibitor Services Kit (ESK) – View event information and place orders
e.     Booth Approval Form – Submit your Booth Approval Form. Booth Approval Forms are mandatory for all booths
f.      OnPeak Housing – Book your hotel rooms and travel plans here
g.     Client Services – Contact client services with any questions you have

*The password for your console as well as a link to the console is listed on the invoice you received for your booth contract. If you have any issues accessing your console, contact Client Services


2. Read the Service Kit

It is important to read the entire Exhibitor Services Kit thoroughly. Below are the documents we recommend starting with:

a.     Welcome Letter
b.     Critical Dates Checklist
c.      Booth and Show Rules and Regulations
d.     Exhibitor Tips and Tricks
e.     How to Navigate the ESK

3. Know the important dates and deadlines -

Set calendar appointments for order discount deadline, booth approval form deadline and registration deadline to ensure you are saving money and have a smooth set-up. All dates can be found in the Critical Dates Checklist in your Exhibitor Services Kit and on the homepage of your ESK under the Important Dates and Deadlines section.


4. Know who to contact -

Account Managers: Contract your space, upgrade or add sponsorships, and make contact or account information changes. Account managers are determined by your company location. Click Here to contact.

Client Services

When you have Questions about set-up, need help accessing your console, have questions about registering your booth staff or any time you are not sure who to ask!

Deanna Brown

Accounting Services

Contact your accounting services representatives when you have questions on payment or would like to make a payment over the phone.

WFX Billing

Pre-Show Coordinator

Contact GES when having trouble placing orders through your ESK, have questions about GES billing and payments or are unsure which forms you need to fill out.

Lauren Brown

5. Train your booth staff –

The best way to maximize your success at any event is to have a fully trained and engaged booth staff. Attendees have expectations when they come to your booth. Below are some tips to get started:

a.    Be memorable & enthusiastic
b.    Professional
c.     Knowledgeable
d.    Friendly
e.    Courteous to your "guests"
f.     SMILE! Have a positive attitude. How often do potential customers make a special trip to see you?
g.    Carry and use breath freshener spray or small mints (Tic Tacs vs. large, bulky mints). Shy away from spicy or garlicky food and alcoholic beverages
h.    Avoid chewing gum, eating, and drinking while in your exhibit
i.     Keep your booth neat & tidy!
j.     While working the exhibit, don't sit in your booth or lean on the exhibit counters
k.    Don't spend time talking on your cell phone, with booth neighbors, or to your other booth staff
l.     Make eye contact; never ignore a prospect, even if you're with another prospect. (Give them a nod and "just a minute" sign). Include them into your conversation
m.    Greet attendees by name. If you can't pronounce it, ask!
n.     Shake hands; match the strength of the other person's handshake and only "pump" twice
o.     Target Move-In Information

6. Put together a trade show survival kit –

Include the kit in your freight or checked bag including:

a.     Copies of all orders and tracking number
b.     Small tool kit
c.     Staples, scissors and tape
d.     Pens and markers for labels
e.     First Aid kit
f.      Bottled Water

7. Plan for move-out –

Move-out is often one of the most confusing and overlooked parts of trade show management. Each facility, contractor, and show comes with their own unique move out challenges. Here are a few notes to get you started:

a.     Pre-arrange your outbound shipping with a carrier who is familiar with tradeshows.
b.     Plan ahead! Contact your Client Services Specialist 6-8 weeks PRIOR to the event to discuss the move out process if you have any questions.
c.     After emptying crates, place empty labels on all sides of your crates and cases. Remember to remove old empty labels. Additionally, the empty labels are sometimes color-coded, so make sure you get the correct color and be sure your booth number is on each label. This will ensure no crates are lost or separated and will speed up move-out. Don’t forget to label your pallets if you need them back for return shipping. If they are not labeled, they will not be returned to your booth.
d.     Large shows take time for the crates, pallets and empty boxes to be returned to the booths for load-out packing. It can take 6 hours or more for empty crates to be returned to the booth; please plan your departing flights appropriately. Loose cartons and fiber cases will be returned first so you can start packing. Wooden crates and skids will be next. Material return is random and holding your empty crates during set-up will not get your crates back to you any earlier. If you hold your empties, the Floor Manager will warn you at first and then have your empties removed.

Be sure to read through the move-out information located in your Exhibitor Services Kit for more tips on move-out.

8. Additional Tips -

a.     Keep the total square footage of your booth space in mind when you order decorating items. Do not order more than will comfortably fit in your booth and allow you to do business. Remember, you are only allowed to use the contracted booth space, not the aisles.
b.     If you have multiple exhibit locations, please complete a new and separate order for each location (booth, meeting room, etc.).
c.     Have a company credit card to pay all balances due on show site and for deposits on rental equipment.
d.     Work Zone - You should know that the show site and surrounding areas are active work zones. You need to be careful and keep an eye out for moving vehicles. Company agents and representatives are present at their own risk.


The FULL EXPERIENCE and CONFERENCE (2-Day) PASS allows for unlimited access to all 5 tracks. Mix and match sessions to customize your learning experience.

And, Senior/Executive Pastors ALWAYS attend for FREE!



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  • Packages

    Consolidate your packages. Don’t ship multiple small boxes to an event. They could get separated during transit and arrive on separate days causing additional charges and material handling fees. Remember there is a minimum material handling fee for each shipment that is received.

  • Electronic Literature

    Attendees often throw away literature rather than take it home. Both shipping and printing these materials can be very expensive. Instead, order the Lead Retrieval device through your Exhibitor Services Kit, scan the attendee badge and email them the information they have requested. Another great option is to load the information on a USB drive that can be given to attendees. It is a great marketing tool, and is less likely to be thrown out.

  • Shipping Documentation

    Often materials are lost or damaged during shipping. Be sure to document all of the materials you ship and their condition at the time they leave your possession. Diligence in this area can save you money if there are any issues during shipping. Be sure to bring tracking information with you on-site.

  • Tradeshow Shipments

    Be sure to use a carrier that is experienced in delivering to tradeshows as it can be tricky. The best way to ensure that shipments will arrive on-time and to the correct venue is to ship with a carrier who knows the ins and outs of tradeshow shipping. Communicate your move-in dates to your carrier as well as marshalling yard information if applicable.

  • Know Your Carrier

    Have contact information for your carrier readily available including weekend contact information and do not leave the convention centers until you have confirmation that the carrier has checked in at the marshalling yard during move-out.

  • Insurance

    Make sure the insurance on the shipment covers freight from the time it leaves your possession to the time it returns home.

  • Advanced Warehouse

    It is important to do a cost analysis when deciding whether to ship to the advanced warehouse or direct to show site. When making this decision be sure to take all factors into consideration. Important factors include: the cost of material handling, the cost of your freight carrier waiting in the marshaling yard, the cost of storage you are paying to hold your materials 30 days pre-event (storage is included in the advanced warehouse rate) and the impact the loss of the shipment may have if lost or delayed in transit. Shipping to the advanced warehouse gives you peace of mind that your shipments will be in your booth when you arrive.

  • Special Handling Charges

    Special handling charges can be very expensive. Be sure to read the special handling brochure under the Shipping, Drayage, Material Handling and Access Storage tab of the Exhibitor Services Kit.

  • Cartload Service

    Cartload service is a type of material handling where you are able to bring your equipment to show site in your vehicle and have it offloaded and delivered to your booth. If you will be driving to the event, rather than shipping your materials and paying for material handling, pre-order the cartload service and bring your materials with you to the event. Be sure to read the Move-In Info page located in the move-in section of your Exhibitor Services Kit for specific Cartload Service information for the event.

  • Bill of Lading

    Be sure to fill out your Bill of Lading correctly and turn into the GES Servicenter. The bill of lading (BOL) tells GES that your shipment is ready to be picked up at your booth and delivered to your carrier. Do not leave the completed form in your booth. It must be turned in at the GES Servicenter for processing. Be sure to fill out all information correctly and pay special attention to the section regarding shipping in the event your carrier does not pick up the shipment. Select the “Use GES logistics” option for the least expensive option. Returning shipments to the Warehouse is extremely expensive. Make sure the contact phone number is legible on all copies of the bill of lading.

  • UPS and FedEx

    When shipping with UPS or FedEx never leave shipments on the show floor. 9 times out of 10 they will end up being shipped via the alternative method you selected on your BOL. This will cost you extra money. UPS and FedEx have unpredictable timelines that are not recommended for tradeshow planning. If using these options take the boxes to the local offices for processing. There is often an office in the convention center or nearby hotel.

  • Move-Out

    Move-out takes time. Depending on the size of the show it could be hours before crates for your booth are returned, and there is no way to tell how long it will take. Schedule your flights far enough out to ensure you have enough time to successfully move out. Scheduling flights too soon could result in missed flights or paying GES to pack and ship your booth materials for you.
  • GES Servicenter

    If you are unsure what to order or which forms to fill out, call the GES Servicenter. Submitting the incorrect forms can be costly and result in orders needing to be placed on site. Avoid this by asking questions. GES will be happy to guide you to the correct forms to save you time and money. Don’t forget to ask your GES representative what booth packages are available. These packages are designed to save you money.

  • Booth Rules and Regulations

    It is extremely important to read the rules and regulations for each show that you attend. Booths that are out of regulation will be required to make adjustments to their booth space on site which can be very costly. These adjustments could include ordering furnishings, removing portions of your booth or omitting key marketing structures. Do not assume that because it worked last year, it will work this year. If you have any questions on the booth rules and regulations contact your Client Services Specialist. Their contact information can be found in the Exhibitor Services Kit Welcome Letter.

  • Discount Deadlines

    Most vendors have an early bird discount deadline. If you order early you will often save a substantial amount of money on your booth orders and equipment. Discount deadlines can be found in the Critical Dates Checklist under the Show Information tab of the Exhibitor Services Kit.

  • Overtime Labor Charges

    All labor before 8:00 am and after 4:30 pm Monday thru Friday, and all hours Saturday, Sunday and holidays will be overtime. Straight time rates are for hours worked between 8:00 am and 4:30 pm Monday thru Friday, excluding holidays.

  • Booth Inclusions

    Be sure you know what is included with your booth space. Most events do not have any included furnishings in the booth space. Be sure to check the Exhibitor Services Kit for what is included and place orders accordingly. Orders placed on show-site are very expensive.

  • Flooring

    Flooring is mandatory for most events. You can often save money on flooring by renting through GES. The cost to purchase flooring, ship it, and have it installed is often more expensive than renting through GES. This of course greatly depends on the flooring you require. If you prefer to purchase carpet be mindful of the color. White carpet may only last one event while dark or patterned colors will last much longer. Lastly, remember that carpeting is not the only option when deciding on booth flooring. Carpet tiles are often an affordable solutions that are light weight and easy to transport.

  • Booth Cleaning

    Be sure to pre-order cleaning, vacuuming and porter service for your booth. These services are not included in the booth rental and will be more expensive if purchased on-site.

  • Booth Security

    Tradeshows are not secure spaces. While show management has perimeter security for the hall, they are not watching individual booths. Items that are stolen are often never recovered. Do not store expensive items in your booth and be sure to order booth security if you will be leaving items of value in the booth overnight.