Trade Show Regulations

Trade Show Regulations

Standard/ Linear, Island, Peninsula and Perimeter Wall are the four types of trade show booth formations. While setting up your next exhibition, you may come across a set of regulations. The booth display rules mentioned below are typically for US trade shows. These rules may differ in contrast with each convention center or show hall.


Standard booths share a boundary wall with other exhibits in the show hall. These spaces have a common back wall standardizing each booth. Additionally, their maximum height is 8’ stretched to a distance of 5’ from the front aisle while the maximum height of sidewall of a standard booth is 4’. For these types of booths, hanging signs are not allowed.



A linear booth is one that’s arranged on the corner of the exhibit floor. It’s exposed to the aisle on two sides. A linear booth is built under regulatory methods similar to that of a standard booth. Just like standard booths, no hanging signs are allowed for these linear booths.



Island booth is wrapped in aisles on all of its four sides. Their height to width is 1:1 that is 20’ high and 20’ wide or larger. However, the rules and regulations vary throughout convention Halls in the USA. An Island booth can have solid side walls as per the requirement. Above the island booths, the exhibitors can hang their signs and slogans or digital display screens.



A peninsula booth has three aisles and is also 20’ by 20’ or larger in dimension. These booths must be maintained at a distance of 20’ with three aisles. Side walls must be no higher than 4’ and stand at least 5’ distant on the back wall. The backs of these booths must be complete and finished without any logos or advertisements. Also, signs of about 20’ by 20’ or larger dimensions can be hung through this booth.

Additionally, peninsulas are of two types, backing up a linear booth or the other backing up another peninsula. The max height for type A is 20’, 5’ distance from either side of aisle and a back wall 4’ high. The max height of split island i.e. type B is 20’ all around the booth.



When the standard booths are arranged on perimeter walls of the exhibition area, they form a perimeter booth. The maximum height of this type of booth is 12’ spread on the side walls at a distance of 5’ from the aisle. The sidewalls are no longer than 4’. Perimeter wall booth also is not permitted hanging signs.



Exhibitors should follow the following guidelines when determining booth lighting:

  • Exhibitors aiming to use hanging lights are required to form a sketch of the proposal and get it approved well before the due date.
  • No lighting, fixtures, trusses or overhead lighting is acceptable outside the boundaries of the exhibit space.
  • It must observe the facility rules.
  • Potentially unsafe lasers or UV rays should first be officially approved by
  • Lighting which is potentially harmful, such as lasers or ultraviolet lighting, should comply with facility rules and be approved by exhibition management in a written form.
  • Lighting that whirls, rotates, pulsates and other specialized lighting effects should be in good standing and not interfere with neighboring
  • Ceiling supported theatrical lighting can be incorporated into standard, linear, perimeter, peninsula booth and Split Island to a max height being 20 or 25 ft.
  • Whether buoyed from below or suspended from above, the hanging sign should comply with the booth space usage requirements. Double-sided hanging signs shall be set back to 10 ft. from head-to-head booths.
  • The canopy chains should be 3’ wide, lower than 7 ft. from the floor within 5 ft. of the aisle.
  • Covered ceilings must have one smoke detector sited on the ceiling for every 900 sq. ft.



This set of principles is applicable to US show halls but may vary with convention centers across the world. Exhibitors are required to form a draft for the special requirements which are not listed under the regulations and send them for approval to show management or services.

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