LEAD TIMES: Trade Show & Exhibit Graphics


Depending on the complexity, size and quantity of your Trade Show & Exhibit Graphics, will depend on the lead-time needed to produce them. Lead times are based on when the PSP (Print Service Provider) receives your print ready file.

Shorter than normal lead times may limit your graphic options and increase your costs – so plan accordingly. Contact your PSP and review your graphics order with them. They will tell you how many days are needed to complete your project. Once they receive your print file(s), the graphic production lead-time schedule will begin.

A good PSP will pre-flight your files as soon as they arrive and compare it to the information on the trade show graphic order. Beware; print files typically come in with missing fonts, missing attachments, images that are too low in resolution to print from or the proportions of the image don’t proportion out to the sizes of the graphics required. Changes and revisions from companies happen all the time too. This could affect your due date. Build in extra lead-time whenever possible to deal with these unknown, but all to frequent issues that can arise during the pre-flighting and production process.

Once your print file goes into production, allow 24 to 48 hours for proofing. Once you have approved the proof for printing, allow another 24 to 48 hours for the unfinished finals. Finishing services such as; mounting, laminating, silo-cutting, etc, generally require another 24 hours, again depending on the complexity, size and quantity of your trade show graphic order.

When your trade show graphics are finished, they will be carefully packaged and shipped per your instructions to your specified location. Allow sufficient time for standard shipping in order to keep costs down vs. priority overnight which could cost you hundreds of dollars more – especially if the graphics are rigid, oversized and need a heavy wooden crate for protection.

Lead times for most trade show & event graphics will take 4 to 5 days for completion. The wildcard is always the pre-flighting and proofing process – will it pass or fail?

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