Weights, Dimensions and Urgency are the key of which way to freight.
Here are some tips so that you can make the right choice.
Air Freight Door to Door Service
Usually the fastest service and for smaller orders. This service includes Customs Clearance and Delivery to your Door. It does not include Customs Duty, Taxes or Fees applicable in country of destination. You generally do not need to use a freight forwarder for this service. This service is also trackable using the internet.
Air Freight Door to Airport Service
The second fastest service. This service does not include Customs Clearance, Customs Duty, Taxes or Fees applicable in country of destination. Goods also require to be picked up from the Airport and delivered. It is advisable for new users to find a local Freight Forwarding Company to assist with Customs Clearance etc.
Sea Freight Door to Wharf
The least speedy service but very cost effective! This service does not include Customs Clearance, Customs Duty, Taxes or Fees applicable in country of destination. Goods also need to be delivered to your warehouse from the Port of destination. It is advisable for new users to find a local Freight Forwarding Company to assist with Customs Clearance etc. There is a minimum of 1 cubic meter or 1,000 kgs.
Container Load or LCL (Palletised or Loose Cartons)
A 20′ seafreight container has a capacity of about 30-32 cubic meters depending on the efficiency of the packing. Any volume less than a full container is known as LCL (loose container load). It is cheaper, faster and safer to send a full container than LCL so it is often advisable to partially fill a container (say 60-70%) than send it LCL.
Pitfalls of LCL loads include damage due to increased handling and delays (especially if the goods are transhipped) – don’t always opt for the cheapest sea freight as it may be the slowest or include transhipping (e.g. unloading your goods at Singapore and repacking into another container).
Other factors which you should note include:
Sea Freight is usually palletised and plastic pallets are used due to fumigation requirements around the world. This adds to the weight and dimensions for costing purposes, as well as the additional cost of the plastic pallet.
If ordering a container most commonly used are Tilt Tray and Side Loaders for delivery. The side loaders are used to transport 6m (20ft) and 12m (40ft) containers. They unload the container to the driver’s side only. A Tilt Tray truck slides the container off the back of its tray directly behind the truck.
There are some issues you need to consider prior to delivery:
Access: Do you have sufficient driveway width. Are there any vehicles, trees etc obstructing entry?
Height: Is there anything overhead like wires or branches etc.
Space: Do you have enough area for the vehicle to operate in
Surface: Is the area reasonably level and dry when unloading.
If ordering a container decide if you need the container dropped and left or if you wish to unload while the driver waits. Insurance will need to be quoted separately, unless specified the freight quoted will not include insurance. Always confer with a customs clearance agent as they can give you the correct tarriff for importing and this can sometimes save a considerable amount of money on duty.
Don’t forget freight quoted is subject to change at time of shipping due to exchange rates.