Taking Trade Show Displays On A Plane: Air Cargo Packing Basics For Every Type Of Trade Show Booth
Flying trade show displays to their intended location is a great way to move them across country or over water, but can be damaging to improperly packaged or poorly handled trade show exhibits. These tips will help ensure that your trade show booth emerges unscathed.
Airline travel is the most common form of conveyance to distant conventions and expos, and with good reason: it's fast, it's efficient, and it's one of the safest methods of transit available. For humans, staying safe on a plane is a simple task. You simply sit back in your seat and enjoy a flight, complete with refreshments and staff to help you enjoy your trip. For your trade show booth, it takes a bit more to have an enjoyable journey. Many companies choose to bring their trade show displays along on the plane, and are able to enjoy a much higher degree of certainty about their stand's arrival time at a lower cost. At the same time, many are unaware that trade show exhibits that travel on a plane must be carefully packed and protected. If properly wrapped for travel, an airline flight can be a great way to move your unit cross country - but the wrapping stage is absolutely critical.
Two Different Ways To Send Your Trade Show Booth On A Plane
If you've ever flown on a plane before, you know that there are two main types of cargo: carryon bags and checked luggage. Carryons are limited in size and number, but they're brought onto the plane with you and can stay with you (and potentially in your site, if you like) throughout the flight. In contrast, checked luggage has much less restrictive limitations on its size, and much more liberal restrictions on how much can be checked per passenger. You may end up paying a nominal fee ($50 or so) for additional checked luggage, but it's usually cheaper than shipping your unit.
Carryon luggage is typically as safe as if you packed your trade show displays in a car. It's very hard for them to suffer damage, even if they're packed in just a light carrying case. Checked luggage is more difficult to protect because airline baggage handlers are notoriously harsh with such bags. While your suitcase might have limited options for protection, your exhibits can be much better suited for these harsh conditions. You simply need to be willing to invest in the necessary gear.
Custom Carrying Cases For Trade Show Displays
The best option for protection is a hard-sided custom fit carrying case. This case will be crush resistant, giving your trade show exhibits the ultimate degree of protection against damage from other luggage and from any accidents during handling. Inside, the case should securely protect the elements of your booth from hitting each other, preferably with the use of foam or some other impact-resistant agent. These cases are not cheap, but they'll serve you well for future flights and for any future shipping, if needed.
Inexpensive Airline Travel For Trade Show Exhibits
Even though you have to purchase a case for your unit, you are still likely to find that sending it via plane is less expensive than sending it via a traditional shipping option. Simply ensure that your case has the proper dimensions to fit either as a carryon or as a piece of checked baggage. Typically, banner stands are the only units small enough to fit as carryons, but the exact dimensions should always be confirmed before you fly. With a strong case and a good plan, you'll be able to enjoy the friendly skies with your unit safely in tow.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Harmen writes about trade show displays in Miami for Skyline, a leading designer and producer of Miami trade show exhibits. Clients ship Skyline designs all around the country and world for both local and international needs.