Based in Las Vegas, Serving Trade Shows Across the U.S.

A-Z List Glossary of Trade Show Terms Part 1 A-R

A-Z List Glossary of Trade Show Terms Part 1 A-R

Here is A-Z List Glossary Terms of Trade Show Terms



Table of Contents


Using both sight and sound, typically in the form of video or recorded music. Also includes screens, lights, staging, design and more. 

Supplier of audio visual equipment, projectors, screens, microphones, etc. 

Removable panel or sections of an exhibit that permit access to lamps, projectors, etc. 

The holding area from which goods may be easily accessible during show hours. 

The common name for a type of strong, transparent or semitransparent sheets of plastic, as an ingredient in some plastics, textile fabrics, and lacquers. 

The family of clear, color and translucent thermoplastic resins such as Plexiglas. 

True weight of a shipment after loaded on certified scale. 

Vertical support which allows shelf bracket to be affixed at any point in the support. 

Any time prior or up to the last day allowed for shipments to arrive at the advance warehouse without a surcharge being applied. 

Goods and/or services ordered prior to setup. 

Fees associated with advance orders which typically include discounts 

Includes unloading crated freight; storing at warehouse; reloading for delivery to the exhibit site; unloading freight; delivery to booth, picking up, storing, and returning empty shipping containers/boxes; reloading freight for return.   

Exhibitor’s products fastened to display. 

A representative with proper credentials from the party represented. 

Materials shipped via airline.   

A bill of lading (BOL or B/L) which covers both domestic and international flights transporting goods to a specified destination.   

Carpet installed in aisles. 

Signs (typically suspended from ceiling) to indicate aisle numbers. 

A federal law that bars discrimination against qualified individuals with a disability that limits a major life function with regards to hiring, promotion, termination, compensation, job training or other terms and conditions of employment. 

Strength of an electrical current in amperes. 

Unit of electrical current. 

A spray that helps reduces static electricity in carpets. 

An exhibit display ceiling or entryway which spans two points. 

The process of erecting an exhibit from its components. Also called installation or set-up.

An organization of people sharing a common interest. Some associations sponsor a trade show. See Show Management. 

Number of people at the show. 

An individual  who attends  conventions, trade shows, congresses, and other live events. 

Is an international customs and temporary export-import document. Used to clear customs in 87 countries/territories without paying duties and import taxes on merchandise that will be re-exported within 12 months. 


A light source that illuminates translucent material from behind. 

A type of truck that loads through its rear door.

The standard exhibit configuration where booths are placed in rows, back to back. 

Two or more peninsula booths that butt up against each other in a linear fashion. 

The panels at the rear of an exhibit. 

Booth located on the most outer wall of the exhibit hall of the exhibit facility rather than to another exhibit. Also known as Perimeter Booth. 



Wide backdrops and banners on booth in trade show and exhibition Trade Show Terms

A light source that illuminates translucent material from behind.

An exhibit that is back-to-back with another exhibit or against a building wall. 

A type of identification supplied to an attendee, exhibitor or worker to allow access to a show or convention. 

A partition designed to control light, air, sound, or traffic flow. 

Stationary adjustable lights most often used in a header or for overhead use. 

Thin, flat wire used to hold cartons or crates together. 

Type of textured fabric used to make backwall drape (also booth draperies). 

A suspended panel used as a decoration or a sign, usually made of fabric or paper for temporary use. 

Light modifiers that shape and direct light. Generally fixed onto the front of studio or theatre lights. 

Steel floor support piece for upright post. 

The hourly rate or salary paid for a job performed. It does not include payments for overtime, incentives, or other differentials. 

Piece of wood, typically 1” x 3” or 1” x 4”, which are used to fasten drape or other material against a wall. 

Distribution panel often used when high voltage power is required in a booth. It turns high voltage power into 120-volt power. 

Metal edge of lath or framing which finishes corners or openings and gives plaster finish continuous, smooth corners. 

Metal hardware in pairs (male and female) used for inserting into panel edge to permit easy coupling of panels. 

A document that establishes the terms between a shipper and a transportation company for the transport of goods. Also see Air Waybill, Inland Bill of Lading, Ocean Bill of Lading, Through Bill of Lading. 

Uncrated goods covered with blankets or other protective padding and shipped via van line. Also called pad wrap. 

The enlargement of a two-dimensional item by photography. 

A scale drawing of booth space layout, construction, and specifications. 

A warehouse authorized by customs authorities for storage of goods on which payment of duties is deferred until the goods are removed. 

A storage area for empty crates and contractor materials. 

A mechanical device that can be motorized or manually operated to lift a laborer above floor level. 

An area made up of one or more standard units of exhibit space. 

The amount of floor space assigned to an exhibitor. 

Aluminum and steel framework that supports the booth draperies that define the linear booth spaces. Also known as Booth Steel or Booth Hardware. 

Diagram of booth space showing orientation, electrical, plumbing, furniture, booth structure and equipment placement in a booth space. 

A number assigned by show management to identify an exhibitor’s floor space. 

When an exhibitor receives a variety of services for one single price (e.g. each booth receives carpet 1-6’ draped table, a 500-watt outlet and 500 lbs. of drayage.). Refer to: Package Plan. 

Staff members assigned by an exhibitor to work in an exhibit. 

I.D. sign indicating company name and booth number of exhibitor. 

The dimensions of the floor space contracted by an exhibitor. Usually sold in 10’ x 10’ increments. 

A cord with several quad boxes located 10’ from each other. They supply inline booths with required power. 

The amount of floor space assigned to an exhibitor. 

The installation and/or removal of coaxial, fiber optic and/or twisted-pair cables for a booth to booth connection. 

The installation and/or removal of coaxial, fiber optic and/or twisted-pair cables for a booth to satellite dish connection. 

Portable gas provide by the plumbing team at show site to run equipment. 

Perimeter frame with lumber on edge. 

Location at which common carriers separate consolidated freight. Refer to: Consolidate. 

The British thermal unit is a traditional unit of heat; defined as the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one-degree Fahrenheit. Used by plumbers to measure gas flow to working machinery. 

Electrical transformer used to transform 208-volt power to 220-volts. 

Regulations set by building management outlining procedures for their property. 

An elastic-type cord used for hanging drape around columns. 

Rows of brightly-colored flags hung across roads or above a stage as decoration for special occasions. 

Metal raceway enclosing high-voltage power feeds, suspended from overhead or in the floor, from which high voltage power over 100 amps must be fed. 

Flexible armored electrical cable consisting of two or more wires. 


Cash on Delivery, Collection on Delivery. 

Used for suspending objects. Much stronger than wire. Its thickness ranges from 1/8” to 1/2”. 

Computer-Aided Design /Computer-Aided Manufacturing. 

Artwork or pasted up material that is ready for reproduction. 

An ornamental projection, over a door, window, niche, etc. 2. Roof type of covering, supported on pillars. 

Floor covering for booths or aisle. 

The warehouse where rental carpets are housed between shows.   

Offered for custom cut carpet grades. Packages may include items such as visqueen and padding as well as material handling, installation, front edge taping and pick-up at the close of the show. 

Double-sided tape used to adhere the edge of a carpet to the floor.

A transportation line moving freight. Usually a van line, common carrier, rail line, or air carrier. Also see Common Carrier. 

Fee charged for transporting freight between destinations. 2. Hauling exhibit properties short distances. 3. Freight hauling between locations in the same city, town, suburb, or local area. 

Suspended decorations to enhance the appearance of an exhibition hall or create a more intimate environment by “lowering” the ceiling. 

Certified Exposition Manager – An individual who has completed a training program offered by the International Association of Exposition Managers and has been certified as a competent manager of tradeshows and exhibitions. 

A trademark name for a particular type of hard plastic panel used in exhibit booths. Typically encased by a metal frame. Can be used for any kind of booth paneling and/or certain kinds of signage. 

Document certifying that merchandise was in good condition immediately prior to its shipment. 

Document provided by an insurance carrier outlining coverage on their clients. When insurance is discontinued, all holders of certificates of insurance are notified. These are required by show management before an Exhibitor Appointed Contractor (EAC) can work on the show floor. 

Printed weight ticket from a scale certified or inspected by a government authority such as the Dept. of Agriculture, indicating the date weighed, the weight of the shipment and the vehicle ID of the unit being weighed. 

Cubic feet per minute – A volumetric flow of a substance. In the case of a blower or fan, it indicates how much air it can move per minute. Used for compressed air in plumbing. 

Motorized piece of equipment that is hung from the high steel in a building, used for lifting truss and heavy hanging signs. 

Lights placed around the border of a sign or graphic that blink on and off in a rapid pattern. 

A mechanical device that can be motorized or manually operated to lift a laborer above floor level. 

Electrical fixture with c-clamp device for attaching to display. 

A light fixture with a clamping device that allows it to attach to a wall or pole. 

Convention Liaison Council. 

A carrier-issued receipt indicating transported merchandise was received in apparent good condition (compared with a Foul Bill of Lading).

A term used in some regions to refer to booth drapery. 

Dry chemical fire extinguisher used primarily for electrical fires. 

An electrical cable used as a high-frequency transmission line to carry a high frequency or broadband signal. 

A two-wire extension cord that has the capability of having two or more items plugged into the end. Only approved for use in some convention facilities. 

The holding of perishable goods in a climate-controlled area. 

A contract between an employer and a union specifying the terms and conditions for employment, the status of the union, and the process for settling disputes during the contract period.  Also known as Labor Agreement, Union Contract (this is often mentioned in the Show Rules of the show).

A pillar in an exposition facility which supports the roof or other structures. Usually denoted on a floor plan as a solid square. 

An itemized list of shipped goods. 

A transportation company moving people or goods. For exhibit freight, the carrier usually accepts only crated materials and consolidates the properties of several customers into one shipment bound for the same destination. 

Air that has been compressed to a pressure higher than atmospheric pressure, comes in gas form, supplied by plumbers on the show floor to power equipment. 

A mechanical device that can be motorized or manually operated to lift a laborer above floor level. 

A person to whom goods are shipped. 

A delivery of merchandise from an exporter (the consignor) to an agent (the consignee) under the agreement that the agent will sell the merchandise, receive a commission, and remit the net proceeds to the exporter. 

Conveys instructions from a principal to a provider of such services, without assuming any contractual status in relation to such services. 

A person who sends freight. 

To ship freight to a central depot where several loads bound for the same destination are put together before being shipped to that destination. 

Freight  that is loaded so tight or high that it requires additional manpower to unload or down one side as to make shipments not readily accessible. 

A drawing which gives detailed diagrams and instructions for building an exhibit. 

An individual or company that provides services or materials to a trade show and/or its exhibitors. Also see Official Contractor or Exhibitor Appointed Contractor. 

A facility where expositions are held. Also known as Exposition Center, Facility or Hall. 

A cover placed over the plug of an electrical cord; typically used to match up electrical equipment. 

A service charge issued by the authorized caterer for any food or beverages brought in from outside the convention center.

An exhibit space with exposure on at least two aisles. 

A table raised with leg extensions to 42” in height. 2. A working cabinet for display, demonstration or registration (42” height). 

A skilled worker who provides services at the exposition facility. Also called Labor. 

An exhibit that is transported from show to show in crates (small to huge wooden boxes). 

Materials that are skidded or are in any type of shipping container that can be loaded or unloaded at the dock with no additional handling required. 

An itemized list of the contents of a crate.

A type of clamp to temporarily secure cable when installing overhead work. 

An aisle at a right angle to a main aisle. 

Length x width x height. With reference to booth space, the placement of exhibit properties at a height of 8 feet or more on 3 sides of the leased area. Also a measurement used in determining shipping costs for van lines. 

To determine cubic footage for each piece, use the following calculation: width x length x height ÷ 1728 = cubic footage. Used to calculate space for storage or shipping. 

Upgraded plush carpet in special colors provided by the Official Contractor. 

A display designed and built to meet the specific needs of an exhibitor. 

The authorities designated to collect duties levied by a country on imports and exports. The term also applies to the procedures involved in such collections. 

A person or company licensed to enter and clear goods through Customs. 

Installation of carpet other than standard booth size, generally at an increased cost. 

Profile cut display item such as letters, photos, etc. 

Hundred weight. A measurement used for weighing exhibit properties. 

Cost per hundred pounds.


Department of Transportation. 

Double Time Labor. Work performed on overtime  – see the manual for rates. 

Temporary post used during installation to help support the weight of an overhead structure. 

The date when payment is due for orders before exhibitor move-in. 

A shipper’s stated dollar value for the contents of a shipment. 

An individual (skilled craftsperson) or company (a contractor) providing services for a trade show and/or its exhibitors. 

A power source running from the building utility to the exhibitor with no other exhibitors connected to the same line. 

A unique service running from the building utility to the exhibitor with no other exhibitors connected to the same line. These services include compressed air, telephone, T-1 lines and wireless and connected network and Internet. 

Long haul air freight that waits available cargo space (usually 1 to 2 days) at a reduced rate. 

Pounds per cubic foot, determined by mathematical formula where the weight of an article or shipment is divided by the cubic feet it occupies. 

The booth design often depicted by sketch or renderings. 

When a trailer must be loaded/unloaded in a particular-sequence as to ensure proper fit. 

A drawing showing method of construction, plan views, elevations, floor ports, drains, etc. 

Method of producing repetitive cutout shapes in quantity. 

An open grid or a solid translucent plastic to soften or conceal light sources. 

Length x width x height divided by 194 for domestic shipments or divided by 166 for international shipments. 

A device to control light intensity. Refer to: Rheostat. 

Refers to the first day for shipments to arrive at the exhibit site. 

Includes unloading freight and delivery to your booth; picking up, storing and returning empty shipping containers; reloading freight for return to your specified destination from the exhibit site. 

Signs directing attendees to exhibits, meeting or special areas. 

A catalog of basic information about the show, including exhibitors, floor plan and schedule of events. (This is also sometimes referred to as an Onsite Program or Program.) 

Device to permit easy and safe separation of electrical components. 

The published date for a show where orders will receive a lower rate if all relevant forms, floor plans and credit card information has been furnished and order paid in full in advance. 

A lower rate if all relevant forms, floor plans and credit card information has been furnished and order paid in full in advance. 

To take apart an exhibit. Also known as Take-down, Teardown. 

Graphic panel of varying sizes often used to show a product or service. 

Company and/or contracter that fabricates (builds) displays.

Counter unit with glass top and/or front, for displaying product. Also known as Showcase. 

Required for all installation and dismantling of exhibits, including signs and floor covering installation. 

Exhibit construction specs endorsed by major exhibit industry associations. Also the specific set of rules that apply to an exposition, which vary by venue and city. 

Partition between exhibitors. Refer to: Side Rail. 

A platform where freight is loaded into and removed from vehicles trucks at the convention facility. 

A receipt issued by a carrier to acknowledge receipt of a shipment at the carrier’s dock or warehouse facilities. 

A one-foot, five-wire cord that is used to help transfer high voltage power to 120- volt power on the BCP. 

A piece of equipment that is plugged into a high voltage power drop making it 120- volt power and allowing six places to plug in, shaped like a doghouse. Also known as a Six Box. 

Finished on both sides. 

A two-storied exhibit. Also known as Multiple Story Exhibit. 

A booth made up of back wall and sidewall of pipe and drape. 

A craftsperson who installs drapes, fabric, and special decor. 

The service that includes delivery of materials to an exhibit space, removal of empty crates, storage of crates during the show, returning of crates at the end of the show, and delivery of materials to the carrier loading area. 

The cost of moving exhibit materials within the confines of the exhibit hall, based on weight. This charge is calculated in 100-pound units, or hundredweight, abbreviated CWT. (There is usually a minimum charge for all drayage.) 

A company responsible for handling exhibit materials at a trade show. 

A form completed by an exhibitor requesting handling of materials. 

A double electrical outlet. 

A tax imposed on imports by the customs authority of a country. Duties are generally based on the value of the goods some other factors such as weight or quantity (specific duties), or a combination of value and other factors (compound duties). 

Deadweight (tons of 2240 lbs.) 


A stand for displaying objects. 

Construction technique of joining two materials by notching both and inserting slots into each other. Also known as gridded diffuser panels. 

A company hired by show management to provide electrical services to exhibitors. 

They are hired for the installation of electrical equipment. This may include lighted headers, hanging signs and truss work depending on the work jurisdiction. 

Table raised to counter height. 

Scaled drawings depicting front and side views of an exhibit. 

Reusable packing container in which exhibit materials were shipped. Not needed during show and marked to go into empty storage. 

Special stickers supplied by the general contractor. Special crews patrol the exhibit hall picking up empties during installation and return them during dismantling. 

A PostScript file format used to transfer a graphic image between applications and platforms. EPS files contain PostScript code as well as an optional preview image in TIFF, WMF, PICT or EPSI, the latter being an ASCII-only format. 

An exhibit space with aisles on three sides. 

Estimated Weight. 

A statement of the approximate cost of work performed. 

A higher limitation of liability than what is stated in the terms. Check terms to see what is covered under Excess Declared Value. 

A contractor appointed by show management as the sole provider of specified services. 

The rental of a carrier’s entire cargo space by one shipper. 

Structure used at trade shows and events my brands for  displaying products, conveying a marketing message, brand activations, and more. 

Company responsible for designing and constructing exhibits. 

A guide for exhibition attendees which lists exhibitors and exhibit locations. 

The area(s) within an exposition center where exhibits are located. 

The exhibit builder or the company who rents the exhibit to the exhibitor. 

 Person in charge of an individual exhibit. 2.  Show management staff person in charge of exhibit area. 


Las Vegas Trade Show Exhibits



Promotional materials for prospective exhibitors to encourage participation in an exhibition. (Provided by show sponsor). 

A trade show or conference at which people gather to drive business, learn new industry trends, network and attend educational sessions. 

The customer – company or persons presenting an exhibit. . 

A contractor hired by an exhibitor to perform trade show services independently of show management appointed contractors. Also called Independent Contractor or EAC. 

A package of information which contains all rules, regulations, and forms relating to an exhibition, provided to exhibitors by show management. Also called Service Kit. 

A manual containing general show information, labor/service order forms, rules and regulations and other information pertinent to an exhibitor’s participation in an exposition. Refer to: Service Kit. 

Manual containing general show information, labor/service order forms, rules and regulations and other information pertinent to an exhibitor’s participation in an exposition. Also known as Service Kit, Service Manual or Exhibitor Manual. 

Service offered by a transportation company to assure prompt delivery. 

Purchases that typically have a “one and done” use.  Ex: tape, disposable skirts, etc. 

To send or transport goods out of one country for sale in another. 

An individual or company that brings together buyers and sellers for a fee. 

A company that transacts manufacturers’ export business for a fee. 

Company that buys products directly from manufacturers, then packages the merchandise for resale under its own name. 

A company that buys foreign merchandise for resale in its own local market. 

The portion of a trade show or conference at which companies and exhibitors display products and/or services related to the show. Commonly referred to as the Expo Hall. 

The organizer and operator of an exposition. See Show Manager or Show Organizer. 

The set of regulations which govern a given trade show. Also known as “Showsite Rules.” 

Contractor appointed by management to provide services to exhibitors. Refer to: General Contractors, Official Contractors. 

The formation of metal or plastic to push out. 

Products produced in continuous shapes by forcing materials under great pressure through dies (i.e. “T” molding channel, angle.) 

Eye bolts or eye screws have a looped head or an opening in the head. 


The construction of an exhibit. 

Refer to: Convention Center, Hall.  

Term used to describe transition from one scene to next by slowly darkening image. 

The panel at the top of an exhibit, typically bearing the company name. Also known as the Header. 

Corporation identification number issued by the federal government. 

A thick material that has two “good sides.” 

Fire Hose Cabinets – A notation on floor plans indicating the locations of fire hose cabinets. 

A fiber-optic cable guides light from end to end. A signal is injected in one end by an LED (light-emitting diode) or by semiconductor lasers. LEDs are used for short-distance optical links such as enterprise backbones while lasers are used for longer distance networks. Silica cable is categorized as either multimode cable, which is used for short-distance connections (LANs, campus networks, and short distance metro networks), or single-mode cable that is used for long-distance (cross-country networks and intercontinental submarine links). The light source for the former is typically an LED, while the light source for the latter is a laser. Long-haul fiber-optic cable is often bundled with anywhere from 100 to 800 fibers per cable. 

The use of cut glass fibers to display colored light. 

Portable water and drain services provided at show site by a plumber to operate equipment or display items such as sinks, etc. 

A door designated for emergencies, which must be kept clear of obstructions

An aisle that must be kept clear of obstructions to allow emergency entrance and exit.

Civic or building official responsible for enforcing fire prevention regulation. 

Term used to describe a finish which coats materials with a fire-resistant (not fireproof) cover

A device to activate one or more lamps by intermittently interrupting current. 

Cable and extension cords that are used to lie on the floor under the carpet. It is flat to help reduce tripping hazards and provide a safer walk area within a booth space. 

A tractor 40’ x 48’ in length with a flatbed (no sides). 

Maximum weight per square foot a floor can support. (May also refer to the maximum amount of power available from floor outlets and ports). 

An individual representing show management who is responsible for the exhibition area. 

A method used to mark booth spaces. 

Order for services placed after exhibit installation has begun. Compare with Advance Order. 

A map showing the size and locations of exhibit spaces. 

A utility box recessed in the floor containing electrical, telephone, or plumbing connections. 

Contractor providing plants and floral arrangements. 

Mounting of one material to another with no space between them. 

Rigid foam covered with heavy paper stock used for mounting signs, art, etc. 

A process used in vector graphic design software such as Adobe Illustrator or CorelDRAW in which a font can be converted to “outlines” or a graphic representation of the font. Not all computers will have the same fonts installed and will sometimes not show the original font correctly from one computer to the next. When fonts are converted to “outlines”, there is no other conversion required and they will show on the computer monitor/in print as originally intended. 

Refer to: Free Trade Zone. 

Motorized vehicle with a prolonged platform for lifting and carrying loads. 

Person who operates a forklift and is certified to do so. 

Public area in hotel or hall for assembly or registration. 

This is an exhibit with aisles on all four sides. Also known as Island Exhibit. 

Self-supporting and independently displayed material. 

A port designated by the government of a country for duty free entry of non-prohibited goods. Merchandise may be stored, displayed, used for manufacturing, etc. within the zone and reexported without duties paid. Duties are imposed on the merchandise (or items manufactured from the merchandise) only when the goods pass from the zone into an area of the country subject to the Customs Authority. 

Exhibit properties and other materials shipped for an exhibit. 

The area where inbound and outbound exhibit materials are handled at a trade show. 

A large door located on the perimeter of an exhibit hall that accommodates large trucks and freight management operations

A shipping company which handles export shipments for a fee. 

The weight of the exhibitor freight.  Measured in one hundred pound increments, CWT.  Ex:  100lbs = 1 CWT. 

Refers to dimension across the front of an exhibit (e.g., a 30×10 exhibit has 30’ of front space and 10’ of depth.) Also known as Front Space. 

Carpet covering entire area of booth. 

Contractor capable of providing all services for management and exhibitors. Refer to: Official Contractor, General Service Contractor. 

Rental furniture provided by contractor for use by exhibitor or management. 


A box on wheels that contains misc. supplies which the labor force uses. Also known as Johnny Box. 

An International term referring to the aisle. 

Trade name of manufacturer that produces brackets and standards for the mounting of materials, usually shelves. 

Metal frame to support large numbers of apparel. 

Pieces of plastic that are installed over a floodlight to change the color of light emitted. They are available in many different colors and hues. 

Show management appointed company providing services to a trade show and/or its exhibitors. Also called Official Contractor. Compare with Exhibitor Appointed Contractor. 

Refer to: Man-Lift. 

Flat piece of metal cut out like a stencil with words or shapes. Placed in front of a floodlight so the light comes through like the stencil shape on the floor and exhibit space. 

Small (75 to 150 watt) spot light with a flexible stem. 

Communicative elements/color, copy, art, photographs, back drop, etc. used to decorate a booth or space. 

Technique of providing system of structural supports, electrical conduit, etc. on a pattern of centers. 

Rubber, metal or plastic element for reinforcing holes in weaker materials.

Total space available in exhibit hall. 

Full weight of shipment excluding goods and packaging. Refer to: Tare Weight. 

Vehicles that are not dock height, preventing the use of loading docks. 


A generic term for an exposition facility; may also refer to an individual area within a facility such as south hall, etc. 

Hypothermal fire extinguisher generally used on computer and sensitive electronics fires. 

Items that an exhibitor is permitted to carry unaided in/out of a convention facility without being charged. 

Small hand-propelled implement with two wheels and handles used for transporting small loads. 

Electrical connections that are other than receptacle to receptacle. These are charged on a time plus materials basis. 

A type of exhibit construction in which the walls are of solid material, rather than fabric. 

A type of exhibit structure in which walls are made of a solid material, rather than fabric. 

Any solid, liquid, or gas that can harm people, other living organisms, or the environment. A hazardous material may be radioactive, flammable, explosive, toxic, corrosive, biohazardous, an oxidizer, an asphyxiant, an allergen, or may have other characteristics that make it hazardous in specific circumstances. 

A sign or other structure across the top of an exhibit. 

Special trailers utilized to transport large heavy equipment. 

Rules set by show manager to control height of exhibits. 

Drape over 8’ high that requires special equipment. 

Refer to: Man-Lift. 

Cross bar used for hanging drapes. 

A unit of measure for the power of an engine, equal to 550 foot/pounds per second. In electrical terms, 1 horsepower is equivalent to 746 watts of power. 

An area separate from the exhibit, in which refreshments are served and exhibitor personnel and visitors socialize. Most shows require hospitality events to be opened only after exhibit hours. 


Installation & Dismantle Company – A company that is hired to install and dismantle exhibits. 

Installation and dismantle of an exhibit, or set-up and tear down of an exhibit. 

Company name and booth number sign. Also known as Booth Sign. 

Shipments that arrive without an individual Bill of Lading. 

In Bond Transportation refers to the system of admitting merchandise provisionally to a country without payment of duties and under customs supervision — either for storage in a bonded warehouse or for trans-shipment to another point. 

A contractor hired by an exhibitor to perform trade show services independently of show management appointed contractors. Also known as Exhibitor Appointed Contractor (EAC). 

Unauthorized use of floor space outside exclusive booth area. 

The time required for directing or aiming the lights that have been mounted on the trusses. 

A bill of lading used in transporting goods overland to the exporter’s international carrier. Although a bill of lading can sometimes be used, it is usually necessary to prepare both an “inland bill of lading” and an “ocean bill of lading” for export shipments. 

An exhibit that is constructed in a continuous line along an aisle. Also known as Linear Display. 

Cards completed by booth staff obtaining attendee information. 

Interchangeable copy or art panels. 

Exhibit space with exhibit booths on either side or back. Also known as an inline Booth. 

The time frame for installing a show or an exhibit. 

Installation and dismantle of an exhibit, or set-up and tear down of an exhibit. 

May be either an official contractor hired by show management or an EAC hired directly by an exhibitor who is responsible for supervision and coordination of installation and dismantle labor. 

The date the general services contractor first receives access to the facility for move-in. 

Exhibits in which an activation that typically involved multi-media and integrated marketing to immerse the visitor in the experience Exhibitions, Exhibits, Events)

Refer to: Freight Forwarder. International Trade Show Forwarder – Refer to: Freight Forwarder. 

A statement sent to clients for monies owed to a corporation for services or items provided.

Booth space with aisles on all four sides. 

An exhibit that is exposed on all sides to an aisle in a show. A unit with aisles on four sides. 

A display that may be viewed from four sides.


A special-purpose crate with hardware to secure exhibit properties in place to prevent shifting during shipment. 

Refer to: Office Dolly, Gang Box. 

Long-handled wooden pry bar with metal tip and wheels used in freight handling. Also known as a J-Bar. 

Theatrical term for multi-prong electrical disconnect. 

Metric unit of work or energy, used as a measurement of electric. 

Worker who has satisfactorily completed an apprenticeship in a skilled trade. 

A distribution point for electrical power. 


Knockdown – An exhibit with separate components that must be assembled on-site. 

Base molding or added to structure to absorb marring caused by brooms, mops, etc. Also known as Toe Base. 

A small informational counter, open to one or more sides, used within an exhibit for the display of product, services, screens, and activations. 

See Service Kit. 

A light fixture that is installed from the catwalks, ceiling or truss systems and can be easily light up a 10 x 20-booth space. They cannot be installed on the exhibit itself due to the temperature at which they burn. 


For shows, refers to workers who perform services. Also known as Craft persons. 

Area from which laborers are dispatched to work areas at show site. 

The form used by exhibitors to order labor. 

Refers to an order for exhibit installation and dismantle or any job that will bill labor. 

Refer to: Craftsperson. 

The process of bonding two or more substances together. 

Sign where width is larger than height. 

Booths built in front of overhead doors used for loading freight in & out. Booth is constructed last, before show open, and is dismantled first, prior to move out due to use of overhead doors. 

A surcharge applied to each shipment received at the advance warehouse after the deadline date. 

A system for capturing and follow-up of leads generated by a live experience. . 

A shipment that utilizes less than a truckload of space; the rate charged for freight weighing less than the minimum weight for a truckload. 

Legal issue of responsibility for damage or injuries. 

Enclosure with lighting and translucent face of plastic or glass used to back light signs or graphics. 

The weight of a vehicle after unloading freight. Used to confirm freight weight to charge the exhibitor per hundred-weight for shipments. 

The amount or type of illumination in an exhibit or show site. 

Line booths have only one side exposed to an aisle and are generally arranged in a series along a straight line. They are also called “Linear” booths or “In-Line” booths. 

Irregularities in power supply. 

An exhibit that is constructed in a continuous line along an aisle. Also called inline. 

Devices used to hold literature or brochures. 

Anticipated number of items required for a show to be loaded onto a truck for delivery to show site. 

An area within an exposition facility where freight is received and shipped. 

A final engineered drawing of all truss, lighting, hanging sign pick points and weights. 

Secure storage area, which is either guarded or locked. 

The movement of freight shipments on a commercial basis, where a general services contractor buys transportation at a wholesale price and sells it to their customers at a retail price. 

Symbol identifying an organization, company or event. 

Storage available at warehouse for long periods of time between shows. 

Fabric to which Velcro will adhere. Loose Jig – Removable support in shipping cases. 

A set of injury prevention and overall safety guidelines for exhibitors to follow at the show site. 

A space in an event, show floor, exhibit area or other environment where attendees may sit and interact. 

Term applied to electrical currents of 24-volts or less; must be transformed from normal 110volt input and may be used in animation or specialty lighting. 

A type of truck that can be adapted for picking up loads at ground level. 

A transparent thermoplastic acrylic resin. 


Box used to store trade show drape. 

A mechanical device that can be motorized or manually operated to lift a laborer above floor level. 

See Service Kit. 

An offsite location where trucks are checked in and held until space for unloading is available onsite. 

Drapes used to cover storage and other unsightly areas. 

A trade name for commercial hardboard. 

Movement of materials inside a convention hall. 

Refers to shipments that are loaded by cubic space and/or packed in such a manner as to require additional labor and handling. Additional fees are applied to special handling shipments. These include: ground loading; side door loading; constricted space loading; designated piece loading; stacked, cubed out or loose shipments; multiple shipments; mixed shipments; improper delivery receipts; uncrated shipments. 

A form issued by show management and signed by the exhibitor that tells the security guard that removal of an item is authorized by the exhibitor. Also known as Merchandise Release Form. 

A type of light used in many convention centers that produces a high-intensity ultraviolet light. They are most commonly used in fabricated tent structures. 

The most common width for a backwall panel. 

Air shipment for 2nd day delivery. 

Long haul air freight that waits available cargo space (usually 1 to 2 days) at a reduced rate. 

See Less than Truckload (LTL). 

Air shipment for next day delivery. 

Ground shipment by truck – full truckload. 

Pieces for separate shipments that are loaded mixed throughout the delivery vehicle or shipments of crated and uncrated goods where the percentage of uncrated is minimal and does not warrant full uncrated rate for shipment. 

Exhibit constructed with interchangeable components. 

Date(s) set for installation of exhibits. 

Date(s) set for dismantling of exhibits. 

 Combining two or more types of audio visual support in a presentation. 

Shipments that are loaded mixed on the truck, failing to maintain shipment integrity and/or have multiple delivery areas. 

Refer to: Double-Decker.

A trade name for thin plastic material in sheets or tape, translucent and opaque. 


Not in Booth – Refers to freight listed on bill of lading, but not in booth at time of loading. 

The total booth, room, or floor space for exhibitors and events . 

An aisle that must be kept clear at all times during installation and dismantling. 

A company other than the “general” or “official” service provider who is designated by show management as provider of a specific service and requires access to booth during installation and dismantling. A non-official contractor may only provide services in the venue which are not designated by the venue as “exclusive” to a venue provider or by show management in a contract as an exclusive service. No solicitation or providing of services not contracted is allowed by the non-official contractor. 


Owner’s Risk. 

A bill of lading (B/L) indicating that the exporter consigns a shipment to an international carrier for transportation to a specified foreign market. Unlike an inland B/L, the ocean B/L also serves as a collection document. If it is a “Straight B/L,” the foreign buyer can obtain the shipment from the carrier by simply showing proof of identify. If a “Negotiable B/L” is used, the buyer must first pay for the goods, post a bond, or meet other conditions agreeable to the seller. Also known as Air Waybill, Inland Bill of Lading, Through Bill of Lading. 

Any shipment arriving before or after its target date and/or time. 

General contractor appointed by exposition management. Refer to: Exhibition Service Contractors. 

Ceremony, ribbon cutting, etc. to proclaim show officially opened. 

Outbound Material Handling Form. 

Refers to measurement of space from center of a solid object (such as a column) to another point. 

A labor or service order placed on-site. 

Form for ordering various services. 

Show Manager. 

Work performed on overtime billed at either time and one-half or twice the published labor rates. 

OT/OT refers to the rate if material is handled on overtime both into and out of the show. Straight time is defined as Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Trucks signing in after 2:00 PM may be charged at the overtime rate. Overtime is defined as any time after 4:30 PM as well as Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays. 

An OMHF (Outbound Material Handling Form / Bill of Lading) must accompany all outgoing shipments. 

Exhibit or booth located outdoors. 

Work performed over the exhibit floor usually requiring a scissor lift or man lift. 

A panel mounted to another surface; usually used to hide an error in graphics or material. 

A designation for work performed outside the hours specified as normal working hours. Usually work performed on overtime is charged at a substantially higher rate. Work performed in excess of 40 hours in any week for which, under the Fair Labor Standards Act; employees must be paid one-and one-half times their normal wage rates. 


Microphone and speakers used to convey message to audience. 

Packed Weight. 

Show management provides furniture and/or services to exhibitors for a single fee. Also known as Booth Package. 

Similar to household goods moving vans. Operators specialize in moving fragile goods, carefully suspended and blanket wrapped if necessary. 

Freight shipped via van lines where material is pad wrapped but not crated. 

Usually blanket protection for uncrated material. 

A low wooden platform onto which goods are loaded for easier handling. Usually used as a platform for objects moved by forklift. 

A prefabricated exhibit composed of connected rectangular panels of various sizes. 

Parabolic Aluminized Reflector – Common term used for scaled beam spot or flood lamp with self-contained lens-surfaced glass. 

A structural panel of compressed, glued wood chips. 

A mounted assembly of graphics prior to reproduction. 

A temporary building, stand, or other structure in which items are displayed by a dealer or exhibitor at a trade exhibition or event. 2. A usually highly decorated projecting subdivision of a building. 

Trade name for perforated hardboard used for hanging items. Available with holes. 

Booth space with aisles on three sides. Also known as End Cap. 

An exhibit with aisles on three sides. Perimeter Booth – Booth located on the outer most wall of the exhibit hall. 

An exhibit fabricated for long-term usage (i.e. museum exhibit, office exhibit, etc.) 

A surcharge designed to help offset the increasing costs of petroleum which has impacted numerous products including gasoline, carpeting, plastics, visqueen, propane and diesel fuel. 

Lighting fixture with surface mounting plate or with clamp base. 

Tubing material covered with draped fabric to make side rails and back wall of a booth. 

Raised stage for speakers, entertainers or products. 

Flat double fold in cloth. 

A trade name for acrylic plastic material. 

Power strip that can be plugged into a 120-volt power supply and allows up to six items to be plugged in. Also known as a Power Strip. 

Responsible for all plumbing installation. 

Middle grade of 26 oz. filament nylon or polyolefin carpeting with 4 mil poly covering, anti-static treatment and 3M Scotchgard™ protection available in pre-cut and custom sizes. 

Laminated wood of an odd number of sheets glued together, often used in exhibit construction. 

Raised cabinet used to hold speaker’s notes. 

Marketing material or advertising placed next to the merchandise it is promoting.

A type of small exhibit in which the backwall structure expands to size from collapsed, interconnected members. 

Exhibit capable of being carried by one person. 

A lightweight display unit that can be moved without a forklift. 



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Job function that performs sweeping, cleaning and dusting. 

Sign with greater height than width. 

Metal upright used to support drapes. Refer to: Upright.

Refer to: Tack Board. 

Privately Owned Vehicle – A vehicle, such as a passenger car, van or small company vehicle, as distinguished from trucks, tractor-trailers and other over the road vehicles. 

Special loading dock reserved for POVs where material is unloaded at prevailing drayage rates. 

Electricity. 120-volt power is considered regular household power. 208-volt single phase and three phase power is most commonly used for stage and theatrical lighting systems. 480-volt power is commonly used for industrial type machinery. 

Electrical power which is dropped down and installed into an island booth from above the booth. 

A movable unit having multiple electrical outlets.

A pre-built exhibit ready for installation. 

Table skirt permanently pleated, ready for installation. 

Registration of attendees prior to arrival 

An attachment of slings, shackles, lifting eyes, spreader bars, etc. at an exhibitor’s plant for the lifting of the machine at show site. 

Materials provided by show management for news releases, product announcements and other materials intended for the media are distributed. 

An article intended for use by the media about a company, product, service or individual. 

Exhibit Producer: An individual or company that designs and/or builds. 2. Show Producer: An individual or company that manages trade shows. 

Printed schedule of meeting events, location of function rooms, location of exhibitors, and other pertinent information. 

Shipment number designated by the common carrier for a single shipment, used when referencing a shipment. 

A graphics copy obtained for checking purposes. 

Release provided by the exhibitor for the removal of materials from the exhibit hall. Also known as Merchandise Pass. 

The visible opening that frames a stage (usually theatrical.) 

A unit of measure for gasses or liquids. Used to measure compressed air via a regulator at show site. 

A show where the general-public is invited to attend, and an admission fee is usually charged. 

Slotted bin for Exhibitor and Association publications. 

Exhibitor and Association materials for distribution during the show. 

A tall exhibit structure used for identification. 


Four electrical outlets in one box (usually metal.) 

Pattern of rope and stanchions used for crowd control. 


A metal, insulated rubber, or PVC container which surrounds electrical wires (for support and protection of the wires.) 

A low wall used to divide exhibits. 

Lettering cut-out of any material and applied or mounted to a surface or background for dimensional effects. 

A metal plate mounted on electrical equipment engraved with the electrical information regarding the particular equipment (e.g. 120 Volt Single Phase, 60 Cycles, 1000 Watts or 230 Volts, 30 Amps, 3 Phase). 

Technique of using a light source to illuminate a translucent image from behind it. Also known as Backlit. 

Video technique where the projector is behind the screen, rather than in front of it. 

A document that verifies goods ordered are received. 2. Someone who fills out a receiver document. 

A drawing that shows where items are located on the ceiling of a room or space. This is the first step toward finalizing a Load Plan Drawing when using rigging. 

The process of repairing damage, renewing surfaces and replacing graphics as necessary to recondition an exhibit to extend its lifespan. 

A show targeted to attendees from a specific geographical area. 

Procedure in which attendees receive badges for admittance. 

Part of building where registration takes place. 

Cabinet designed to facilitate registration of attendees. 

Applicable rates for display labor if ordered after the deadline date. 

Applicable labor rates for porter service if service is ordered after the deadline date. 

An item’s unit price when ordered after the deadline date. 

An electrical device used to produce programmed effects by interrupting the flow of current. 

A device for controlling the rate of flow. A handle or gauge controlling the supply of water, air, gas etc. on working machinery. 

Form provided by management to permit removal of goods from exhibition. Also known as Property Pass or Merchandise Pass. 

A complete booth package offered to exhibitors on a rental basis. 

An exhibit rented to an exhibitor. 

Seating area provided for attendees. 

Common term applied to panel joined to background at ninety-degree angle. Utilized to support the back wall of the exhibit. 

Side panels joined perpendicular to the backwall. 

To reproduce as a white image out of a solid background. 

A device to control light intensity. Refer to: Dimmer. 

A laborer responsible for machinery uncrating, un-skidding, positioning, leveling and re-skidding. 2. An individual that hangs overhead signs or exhibit material in some regions. 

The process of attaching the cable on a crane to a piece of machinery or equipment. 2. The process for hanging material or signs from the ceiling of a facility or by floor standing truss secured to the ceiling. 

A state where no person can be denied the right to work because of membership or non-membership in a labor union. 

A platform for people or product.2. Shelf added to table or counter to form tiers. 

An adjustable pipe for hanging back wall and side rail drape. Also known as Telerod, Slider, Expander, Pipe or Telescopic Pipe. 

A vehicle that moves on wheels and usually has a container for transporting things or people. 

A cutting tool for gouging, scooping and hollowing out. 

TrueBlue Exhibits Service Standards
  • We Do It Right, The First Time and Every Time
  • 3D Booth Rendering
    Matches Reality
  • Always Go
    The Extra Mile
  • Win-Win Happy
  • Everything
  • Committed
    to Care
  • Customer
  • Clockwork