These are IBC2023 rules and regulations to be used for reference only. IBC2024 rules and regulations will be published in due course. Please note that due to EU and local legislation and regulations becoming stricter, there may be changes that may affect your stand design and build for IBC2024. 


The construction of Double Decker stands is governed by strict health and safety rules that must be adhered to at all times. Any construction activity not following correct procedures and deemed unsafe will be stopped. The following regulations serve to identify the key elements of safe construction of a Double Decker stand.


  • Full set of stand plans via the Abraxys Stand Plan Submission Form to obtain 'Permission to Build’ certificate'
  • Full set of stand plans including structural calculation via the Double Decker Build Permit Application to the RAI Amsterdam Licences Desk 
  • Double Decker Acknowledgement Form - a compulsory acknowledgement of the terms and conditions associated with double decker build at IBC to Abraxys
  • Double Decker Working at Heights Form detailing control measures for working at height to Abraxys
  • Risk Assessment and Method Statement of the stand construction and dismantling to Abraxys 

As well as receiving general approval of stand plans from Abraxys, an official Double Decker Permit from the RAI Amsterdam is also required by law. A Double Decker stand design approved by Abraxys may be subject to further design changes should it be deemed necessary by the RAI Amsterdam Licenses Desk. A Double Decker Build Permit fee will be charged by RAI Licenses Desk. If a Doubled Decker stand is built without a permit, the authorities have the right to close off the stand or prevent it from being built. The local authorities are now very strict, and no exceptions will be made. Deadline to apply for the Double Decker Build Permit will be published in due course. Please see Stand Plan Submission for important information regarding the submission for stand design and build approval. 

Permit applications should take into account the relevant Dutch Building Standards for Double Decker Stands such as strength, stability and point loads including railings and stairs. It is highly recommended that exhibitors and/or their contractors contact the RAI Amsterdam Licenses Desk for further details before designing their Double Decker stand. IBC will not be held responsible for any costs whatsoever incurred by the exhibitor as a result of requested design changes on the grounds of health and safety by the RAI Amsterdam at the second stage of the design approval and permit application process. 

If you are building a Double Decker stand, please ensure that you have informed your IBC Account Manager, as a charge for the 2nd level is applicable.

In line with IBC Skyline Zone rule, it is required that the upper deck of any Double Decker stand retain a high element of skyline transparency, constituting an open design, incorporating balustrades and low-level walling. Where closed-off meeting rooms are required for privacy on the upper deck, approximately 25% of the walling creating the closed off area should retain a degree of transparency and be constructed for example out of see-through materials such as non-tinted glass, see-through muslin etc. Double Decker designs that are completely closed in on the upper decks forming high, solid cube or box-like structures will not be permitted. IBC reserve the right to refuse, or request amendments to designs, which in their opinion have a detrimental effect to neighbouring exhibitors or the overall look of the exhibition. 

DD Stands






The number, location and width of staircases necessary on a Double Decker stand is judged on a case-by-case basis by the RAI Amsterdam Licenses Desk when issuing Double Decker Permits. Consideration is taken of the direction of traffic flow, floor area used by the public excluding private staff areas. As a general rule an upper deck floor area of 50sqm or over will require two or more staircases. IBC and Abraxys are NOT able to advise on the definitive number and or configuration of staircases on a Double Decker stand. RAI Amsterdam Licenses Desk will advise on the layout and number of staircases during the second stage of Double Decker stand plan approval. Should they require that the design be changed on the grounds of health and safety and structural soundness, their decision is final. Any additional costs that may be associated with this will be the responsibility of the exhibitor. Double Decker stands are not fully approved until passed through the second stage of approval by the RAI Amsterdam Licenses Desk. IBC strongly advise designers to contact the RAI directly with regards to guideline advice on such integral elements of a Double Decker stand design as layout and number of staircases and emergency exits before they finalise their design plan ideas.

Where a Double Decker stand adjoins another stand, the maximum permissible height of the separation wall is 5m. Separation walls higher than 5m will not be allowed. You will be required to dress the wall on the reverse in a colour agreed with your neighbour. Your neighbour will have the option of placing their logo on the side of the separation wall that faces their stand. 

Double Decker Construction Guidelines


  • Stability at all stages of construction and dismantling
  • Identifying the point at which the structure can support itself
  • Identifying the permanent elements that ensure stability
  • The sequence of construction and the sequence for the removal of any temporary parts
  • Calculations indicating the relevant forces and load capability of the structure
  • The floor loading capacity of the venue 


  • Drawings must clearly identify the sequence of construction, e.g. construction of frame; insertion of legs; fixing of bracing
  • A clear plan for dismantling the stand must be identified
  • The time available for construction and dismantling of the stand must be taken into consideration
  • A safe system of work must be identified within the methods for construction and dismantling, i.e. work equipment; temporary handrails; fall-arrest system 


  • A realistic assessment of the loads and forces at each stage should be made in consideration of the erection sequence


  • The design should consider the safest means of connecting components and, where appropriate, indicate the necessary provision of access equipment and the safe system of work
  • Connections shall be simple and effective to reduce the time spent working at height 


  • The design should take account of the safe handling, lifting, storage, stacking and transportation of the components relevant to their size, shape and weight 


The preparation of a construction Method Statement is a vital step in the planning of a safe system of work. The Method Statement must detail the steps taken to build and dismantle the stand i.e. the sequence of construction and the sequence of the removal/breakdown of the stand, identifying the critical controls and procedures to avoid accidents. A safe system of work must be identified within the methods for construction and dismantling of the stand. 

The Method Statement for a double decker stand should include: 

  • Construction sequences i.e. the build and the dismantling of the stand, noting the starting point. Clear identification of the sequence of construction e.g. construction of frame; insertion of legs; fixing of bracing. The time available for construction and dismantling of the stand must be taken into consideration.
  • Methods to ensure stability, including the use of temporary components and systems
  • The detailed construction scheme that identifies the lifting, alignment and connection requirements of the stand.
  • The preferred system to prevent falls from height, the safe means of access and any special platforms or equipment used e.g. temporary handrails, fall-arrest system etc.
  • The provision of suitable personal safety equipment and construction equipment with which to construct the structure safely.

IMPORTANT: Work on site will be checked against this information and will be stopped where it does not comply; dangerous work practices will not be tolerated and persons may be removed from the venue if necessary. As much of the construction as is possible should be completed at floor level, then lifted into position. This should include decking and the erection of handrails to ensure a safe place of work on the upper level once lifted, to avoid the need to provide additional safety measures such as temporary edge protection and fall restraint or arrest systems. Please note that 'live' or 'open edge' working at height is strictly prohibited.

Please familiarise yourself with the relevant Dutch Building Standards for Double Decker Stands such as strength, stability and point loads including railings and stairs. It is highly recommended that exhibitors and/or their contractors contact the RAI Amsterdam Licenses Desk for further details before designing their Double Decker stand. 

General Guidance on Erection and Dismantling of Structures

  1. Method Statement and Risk Assessment of the stand build must be provided and must be followed. All persons involved with the work must be competent to undertake the work and have read and understand the method statement and risk assessments and erection sequence(s). 
  2. Competent supervision is required, and supervisors must be trained and understand the work they are to supervise. They must be able to read and understand the drawings and method statements and ensure that they are appropriate for the structure and its location. Where the methods are changed, the designer shall authorise the change, in writing, prior to the documentation being changed and these must be re-submitted to the Organiser and Amsterdam RAI structural engineer for approval. 
  3. Weights of components should be clearly marked and where necessary, lifting points indicated. Components should be stacked and delivered so that they can be removed in the desired order. 
  4. Deliveries must consider the Floor Loading in the area of erection or unloading. 
  5. Hard hats, safety shoes and hi-vis vests (PPE) are essential for working with steel structures. It may be necessary to cordon off the area of the build when overhead working is taking place. 
  6. Welding and cutting (fabricating) is not allowed within the RAI Amsterdam without the prior written consent of the venue. Please refer to Fire Regulations for Hot Works and Naked Flames
  7. Plant and equipment must only be operated by a competent person and copies of their licences or certificates must be available for inspection at any time. 
  8. Lifting the main deck using several forklift trucks is acceptable provided a Method Statement has been accurately filled out and approved by Abraxys. 

Hard hats, safety shoes and hi-vis vests (PPE) are compulsory for anyone in the halls during the build-up and breakdown periods.