OK, I have a retail store & haven't done shows for 10+ years, but I
used to do nothing but shows, so for whatever it's worth, here's my
Trailers are nice, in that you can pull a smaller trailer with your
normal family car (i.e., don't have to invest in an extra work
vehicle) plus you have easy mobility after setting up your booth. But
safety would be my main concern.
Are you selling fairly expensive jewelry that thieves would target?
If so, then U certainly can't merchandise overnight in a booth, nor
in a car with lots of windows while you go out and eat, etc.
Hands down the absolute best show vehicle I ever had was a Ford
E-350 extended cab cargo van w/ a big diesel engine. Diesel is
generally cheaper than gas, provides better mileadge, and diesel
engines last much, much longer than gas engines, while being
relatively maintenance free, too. That van would haul butt and pull a
It was a non-descript white cargo van (no windows except in the
front, with a steel partition that seperated the front cab and the
back cargo area. I had a very good alarm (w/ kill switch--very
important) installed, plus always used a steering wheel locking
device. The only clue that the van might have held valuables was the
fact that I had a locksmith install deadbolts on the side and rear
cargo doors. As an extra bonus, because it was so non-descript, I
often parked in no parking &/or loading zones for long periods of
time and NEVER got a ticket! Cops just assume your working.
If safety is a concern, & if you ever leave merchandise in the car
(and everyone does occassionally, even if just to use the bathroom) I
say FORGET a car--too easy to smash & grab. I had one friend who was
out to dinner and came back to his car to find windows smashed & his
ENTIRE inventory gone.
How long would it take you to recover from that?!?! It basically set
him back 5 years--obviously it was stupid of him to leave everything
in the car, but still...