Greening Your Tradeshow Booth | National Apartment Association

Greening Your Tradeshow Booth

It’s that time again—tradeshow season! Exhibitors can easily take advantage of implementing eco-conscious practices at tradeshows, sending a powerful message to all attendees.

Here are a few useful tips to help you succeed:

The Booth
Build an exhibit that lasts. When purchasing your booth and display items, ask yourself this question: Can I reuse any of this? Think about the banners you’re ordering, table skirts, carpet, etc. Avoid buying items you will use for just one tradeshow. Choose flexible signage options, such as fabric graphics, that can easily be switched out year to year.

Use aluminum and steel frames, which can be recycled. Green flooring from post-consumer waste is available and also recyclable, as well as green banner stands made from bamboo and recycled soda bottles. It is even possible to purchase low VOC booth items.

For custom or large booths, consider overall weight during the design process. A lightweight booth will minimize fuel when shipping and save you money.

Ensure that all equipment is turned off when not in use and at the end of the day (e.g., projectors, computers, power strips, etc.). Switch to CFL or LED lighting.

Using a pallet reduces fuel, shipping costs, and resources since everything is shipped in one unit. You can reuse old packing boxes to ship items or invest in reusable hard containers.  Instead of Styrofoam packing peanuts, consider newspaper or biodegradable packing peanuts.  By planning ahead, you can also avoid shipping overnight/expedited shipping fees and increased emissions.

Promo Items
Reduce the amount of items that end up in the landfill by giving away reusable or practical items that can be used more than once. Consider reusable water bottles or cups, flashlights, hats, or tote bags. Items like stuffed animals or novelty items will almost always end up in a landfill. Avoid unnecessary packaging as well.

Paper Products
At tradeshows, it’s important to network, so there’s no doubt you will be handing out business cards or some type of brochure. A lot of this paper will end up in the trash. Print your business cards, flyers, and all other paper products on 100% recycled paper. 

Cut back on the amount of paper materials altogether by implementing electronic demonstrations rather than handouts, or load documents on a promotional flash drive imprinted with your company’s logo. QR codes are also an excellent way for attendees to access your collateral pieces digitally. Not only does this make you look cutting-edge, attendees love the interaction.

Giving away a trip to Las Vegas? Make it to a green hotel in Las Vegas. Giving away a car? Make it a Hybrid. Giving away a camera? Make it a rechargeable one. Whatever the prize may be, there is always a green alternative.

Keep at least one recycling container in your booth to encourage recycling. If you want to take it one step further, help organize a post-show program. Instead of having management throw away leftover boxes and other waste, coordinate with a local recycling company and show management to ensure proper disposal. If possible, sponsor recycling bins on the tradeshow floor.

Not only does greening your tradeshow booth set you apart from other exhibitors, there are cost-savings and environmental benefits as well.

For more information contact Amie Winters, Valet Waste, 813-279-2148,