Is Rental the Right Option for YOU?

Jen Borucki | July 26, 2016

One hundred years ago, rentals weren’t as popular as they are today. In 1916, you may have rented a place to live – but little else.

What a difference a century makes. Today, you can rent almost anything you can think of, from housing and cars to expensive jewelry, high end caskets and even a new friend if your normal pals are busy. What would Grandma say about that? (Hey, she might be renting a new pinochle partner if Aunt Marge isn’t up to playing!)

Although rentals are nothing new in the world of trade show and event marketing, there is some interesting news to share courtesy of the latest Rental/Refurb Survey conducted by EXHIBITOR Magazine. Did you know:

  • Almost 90% of exhibitors surveyed owned at least one exhibit and nearly a quarter own more than 5?
  • The average exhibit is 4 years old and is used 8 times per year?
  • About 60% of exhibitors expect their booth to have a lifespan under 5 years?
  • While rental use is up almost 40% since 2011, only a third of exhibitors have made use of this option in the past year?
  • Hot buttons for rentals focus on price, design and customization?
  • Nearly a third of exhibitors anticipate building a new booth in the next 12 months?

The decision whether to rent or own can be complicated and you should never feel compelled to choose rentals as a matter of course. While your exhibit partner can offer guidance on strategic and tactical considerations for your program, the financial implications of booth ownership are unique to each client and something best directed by you. A good exhibit partner will respect your needs and create the ideal environment to host your engagement on the show floor, regardless of whether you prefer a rental, custom build or a hybrid of the two.

Another thing to remember if you do opt for renting – find an exhibit partner who understands what you are trying to accomplish and who enhances your brand with custom features that truly make the space your own. Look for quality workmanship and for graphics and digital capabilities that will ensure your rental is indistinguishable from a full custom build on the show floor. Your partner also should provide great service and be focused on what matters to you.

If you are looking to replace your current booth, here’s some great news. MG has several great resources on our website that could clarify your own rent versus buy decision, including a handy quiz to make your job easier.

Visit to access these helpful tools.

As we know, knowledge is power. Hope this information empowers you to make a great decision for your program!

Jen Borucki, HMCC, is a Marketing Communications Specialist for MG Design, a global full service experiential marketing partner with complete turnkey design, fabrication, marketing, service and labor offerings to successfully create experiences that enrich our clients, our team, our community and our world. In addition to answering your RFI/RFP questions, Jen also provides copywriting services through MG’s internal marketing services agency, magnify™.