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INSIGHT: Top five tips to smoother event logistics

27 March 2024

Garcia Newell, DSV’s Regional Business Development Director, shares his years of advice and expertise… 

Ok, so event logistics may not sound the most glamourous aspect of staging an event, but without doubt it’s one of the most fundamental. All too often, it is taken for granted and left to the last possible minute and that’s where the problems start. Even the most minor of logistics oversights can lead to problems. Don’t forget, as soon as an attendee walks into an event, any detail that’s out of place will be noticed (and probably shared on social media!). That’s why event logistics are so critical to get right. So, here’s our five top tips every event professional needs to consider…

TIMING IS EVERYTHING: It might sound obvious but give yourself plenty of time to plan your shipments whether they’re by road, air or sea. Make sure there is a contingency to allow for transit times and customs formalities, not to mention those unexpectedly delays. When it comes to air freight, a specialist forwarding organisation can advise on the most effective schedule to ensure everything arrives in time for the event, although it is the least sustainable option so do bear that in mind. 

BORDER-TO-BORDER: From insurance to documentation, planning an event inevitably becomes that little bit harder when you have to cross a border. For this reason, it is best to work with an experienced freight forwarder who can guide you through the process. Understanding any customs’ clearance for events needs specialist insight and knowledge, and ultimately, it’s one less on your to-do list. 

CAUGHT SHORT: Transporting goods and products to an event is one aspect but it’s not the only one. They still have to be safely transferred off the vehicle and into position at the venue. End-to-end logistics means just that so always consider how items, especially if they are heavy or fragile, may be offloaded. It may require specialist equipment like a forklift truck so be sure to book this in good time as late requests might not only jeopardise deliver time but can be costly.

SCALING UP: If you host multiple events at the same venue, you could consider storing equipment or materials there in order to save on costs, but also to reduce your carbon emissions. Most venues and logistic providers are usually open to such requests so don’t be afraid to have that discussion. 

ASK FOR HELP: It might seem simple, but never be afraid to just pick up the phone and speak to logistics providers for their advice. After all, they’re the experts. At the end of the day, running any event is a big undertaking so leaving logistics to the professionals allows you to focus more on making the most of your event. 


Garcia Newell is the Regional Business Development Director for DSV, ExCeL London’s Official Logistics Partner and based at the venue. For more information email or visit


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