With so many different systems to choose from, it is important to

be clear about exactly what is expected of the system. Finding the

answers to the following questions will help point the way.

- Will it be assembled in-house?

If the stand is to be put up by the supplier, the mechanics of how it

goes together are less important than how it looks. If it is to be

assembled in-house, consideration should be given to how many different

components are required, how easy it is to assemble and whether one

person can do the job. Weight, durability and speed of assembly are also


- What is the range of stand sizes that this equipment will need to


If your stand size changes by small increments, make sure that the

system is flexible enough to cope with this. Some of the easiest systems

to erect are available only in preset standard unit sizes. If you want

to use height on your stand, make sure the system can take it - you

should be able to go up to 6m high if you wish.

- Will the equipment be needed for other purposes between


This may affect the purchasing criteria.

- Will the stand need to have structural strength to support


Some systems are designed as graphics carriers and have little

structural strength.

- What features and facilities do I need on my stand?

Make a checklist of everything you need and make sure the system can

provide it. A full range of accessories and design features, including

lighting, will enable you to have a very individual stand, with all the

AV and PC equipment you need.

- Will I need to change the stand message frequently?

Is it easy to change graphics? At what cost? Can I use the stand without


- How portable are the stand units?

If the equipment has to go into the boot of a car, this will be a major


- Where will I store the equipment?

If storage space is an issue either the system must be of the 'pack

flat' or 'fold-up' variety - or look for a supplier which can offer a

storage service.

- Do I need full exhibition support?

Some systems suppliers offer full exhibition service support, from stand

build-up and break-down to ordering carpet, electrics and building


- Will I be exhibiting overseas?

To ensure a trouble-free build-up, select a supplier who is experienced

in working abroad and familiar with the working practices of where you

will be travelling.

- Will I get good after sales service?

By-return spare parts service, telephone support, on-site rep visits and

product guarantees are some of the things to look for.

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