A Guide to Trade Show Booth Option: Renting Vs Buying

trade show

For many brands, attending a trade show event is a must-have because it helps to accomplish business goals in a very short period of time. While fixed costs like registration, marketing, accommodations and the exhibit itself can be hefty, the value of getting your company/brand name in front of industry professionals is an opportunity a business owner can’t afford to miss. No doubt, it calls for a huge investment.

5 benefits of attending trade shows:

• Highly targeted leads
• Competitor analysis
• Forge business relationships
• Raise brand awareness
• Education


Planning your trade show booth exhibition requires an organized team, a strong sense of brand identity, and creative collaboration. Whether you are exhibiting with an 80×100 display or a 10×10 space, your booth represents your business so make it noticed by as many attendees as possible. However, the decision to rent or buy a booth should be based on your company’s budget and needs of the business, as each option has its own advantages.

Renting a Trade Show Booth

Renting a booth is a smart investment that a lot of companies (irrespective of its size) are turning to, for financial, as well as functional reasons. Moreover, renting tends to be the more affordable option, and as a renter, the business owner will enjoy many other benefits.

trade shows

For example, trade show booth rental allows you to experiment with the layout of your exhibit display based on changing business needs. Also, you don’t need to worry about storing the booth’s components for a long period, which could save you money.

Buying a Trade Show Booth

One advantage of buying a booth is that it’s 100 per cent yours. If you plan to usethe same exhibit for a longer period, this tends to be a more budget-friendly option.  Companies that buy their own trade show booth enjoy the peace of mind in knowing that they could design it in any way as desire.

Reasons why renting a booth is better option:

Generally, renting is the best option for startups or small companies that may have a limited budget for their exhibit appearance. Here’s a side-by-side comparison of why renting a trade show booth has become such a popular option.


Renting enables your company to add more design or advance elements in order to maximize your exhibit budget. Whereas, purchasing the same quality trade show booth would cost at least 4 to 5 times the amount of rental. On average, renting costs about 1/3rd of what it requires to purchase the same quality booth.


Renting gives business owners the ability to change booth layout, design, and sizeas often as they need to. Furthermore, it allows adjusting or altering the booth while giving you an easy and affordable way to stand apart from the crowd.Whereas, with a purchased booth, it becomes difficult to accommodate the variety of shows you exhibit in.


Wear and tear of a booth is inevitable. Renting gets you a trade show booth that is as good as new––and is exempt from any repair and refurbishing fees. Whereas, with purchased booth, the company will have to bear the cost of repairs or refurbishing.


There’s always the possibility your company might merge with another organization, get bought out or simply change the branding, logo or messaging. A rental booth has the ability to adapt to any industry or brand changes without heavy investment.

When your company undergoes changes, you can still make alterations to your booth, but it comes with a steep price tag to replace the branding and graphics. With a purchase, you’ll have little choice, since the only other option is to buy a brand new booth.

Further reach

Going with a trade show booth rental option gives your company all sorts of exciting designing and marketing opportunities. For example, you can choose to hire two 10×20 size booths to enjoy a larger space which can help to ensure that a large number of prospective customers are exposed to your brand.


Throwing a booth away isn’t an optimal option, plus, it requires an additional cost. Likewise, the ability to reuse rental components makes trade show booth renting environment-friendly. Also, you are exempt from paying hefty disposal or recycle fees––either you chose to recycling some components or dispose it.

The following are the best criteria to use when deciding to rent a booth vs. buy option.

First-time Exhibitor

If you are a first-time exhibitor, using trade show booth rentals will give you an opportunity to see what type of display will work well for you. By renting, you can try a bigger booth, a computer demo station, counter storage, and many other different options––until you feel comfortable to purchase your own exhibit display.

Infrequent Exhibitor
Those business owners who attend only two or three trade show exhibits a year,renting is a more cost-effective option than purchasing. Plus, you can alter the size of your display with each show.

Double-booked Exhibitor
Sometimes a business owner has a busy trade show schedule, therefore, in this case, they can use a trade show exhibit rental to supplement their own display inventory

Tips Every Company Must Know To Ensure Success In Trade Shows

• Calculation-cost vs benefits approach
• Dress right-be formal
• Display nicely-according to the weather and other conditions
• Prepare a checklist-distribute it to the staff
• Make a list of questions-make sure everyone is informed about the products/services
• Be there on time-punctuality is a must-have
• Give Out Promotional items-if necessary
• Hire a spokesperson-it would be an added advantage
• Be welcoming-ensure open communication


Last words

It’s a common misconception that renting a trade show booth display means you’re stuck with a basic design. Instead, you get the flexibility to go as big and customized as you need. Also, if you love the current booth design it can also be used for future shows.

Thank you for reading!