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Carrier Standards
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Statement of Purpose

These Carrier Standards of Performance are established to create a uniform code of conduct and professional ethics for all companies whose role is the pick up, delivery and handling of exhibit and trade show related materials to and from trade shows and events throughout the U.S.

It is the intention of the E2MA, and all other organizations that endorse this document, to foster harmony and mutual understanding in relations between exhibitors, exhibit transportation carriers, official contractors and Show Management, as it regards to the disposition of trade show freight.. And, as such, each previously mentioned segment of our industry shares in the responsibility to make these standards a reality.

It is the ultimate purpose of this document to honor the rights of our exhibitor customers to have unencumbered access to the exhibit transportation carrier of their choosing. Additionally, it is the purpose of this document to honor the rights of the Officially Authorized Show Exhibit Transportation Carriers to have unencumbered compliance to the terms of their agreements with Show Management.



Carrier Standards

As bonafide trade show industry professionals, the organizations that endorse this document, as well as their respective members, pledge to support the ethical disposition of trade show freight, and freight-related services, in order to enhance and improve the value of exhibitors’ trade show participation.

In addition to making this pledge of ethical conduct, we, the endorsing organizations, make the following representations:

1. The exhibitor has a right to select their own exhibit transportation carrier. This right does come with certain responsibilities, but given that these responsibilities are maintained, this exhibitor right is understood and agreed to.

2. Having the right to choose their own exhibit transportation carrier, it behooves the exhibitor to make their choice wisely. This would include checking the background of their carrier to make sure they are adequately qualified, equipped, licensed and otherwise prepared to handle trade show freight .

3. The definitive mechanism for an exhibitor, or their designated agent, to indicate their choice of exhibit transportation carrier is to list the carrier and sign the official contractor’s (general service contractor) shipping instructions form.

4. The official contractor’s shipping instructions form is an agreement between the exhibitor and the material handling contractor to take the exhibitor’s freight from the booth to the loading dock, at which point that freight is handed off to the designated exhibit transportation carrier.

5. Once the exhibitor has selected their exhibit transportation carrier, and they, and their carrier, have fulfilled the required notifications and show site rules and regulations, show management should insure that the exhibitor has the right to clear and unrestricted access to their carrier. In addition, the exhibitor has the responsibility to inform their chosen carrier of the rules, and regulations of the show in question.

6. If an exhibitor desires to make a change in its outbound shipment , they must do so in writing on a new official contractor’s shipping instructions form, or by initialing the changes on the original form. These changes can be delivered to the service desk in person, or by fax or email if they are available.

7. When it comes to official carrier status, show management must take the lead. They must communicate internally to show management staff, and to all appropriate parties within their service network who the official carriers are. Then they must further specify the manner in which they want these authorized parties to be represented in the service kit, on the show floor, and at the service desk. Once show management has clarified these relationships it is incumbent upon all trade show service organizations, official and non-official to collaborate and abide by show management decisions.

8.The official service contractor has the responsibility to clear the show floor at the close of the show, and must ensure that the floor is cleared by a specific time. If the designated exhibit transportation carrier does not show up prior to the pre-established deadline (designated by show management) when the show floor must be cleared the material handling contractor has the responsibility to clear the floor.

9.The official transportation carrier is entitled to the following outbound shipments:

a. Exhibitor designated – that freight which the exhibitor has specifically indicated the official carrier on the shipping document.

b. Default – that freight which comes to the official transportation carrier because the exhibitor has failed to designate an alternate carrier.

c. Forced – that freight which comes to the official transportation carrier because the trade show floor must be cleared, unless the official service contractor returns the shipment to their facility for disposition with the exhibitor/customer, as designated on the official contractor’s shipping instructions.

10.The official service contractor should make all best efforts to contact exhibitors before forcing freight.

Note: The Carrier Standards of Performance were developed as a collaborative effort by the E2MA and ESCA, and have been endorsed and adopted by the Board of Directors of both organizations.
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