Freight forwarders are critical to the success of your business. You need someone who you can confidently trust to ship your packages around the world. How do you choose the right one for your business needs? Here are five tips for choosing international freight forwarding services that are best for you.
Understand Your Requirements
You will need to figure out exactly what your needs are before selecting a freight forwarder. Determine the mode of transport you would like to have as well as the volume you plan to ship. Put together a list of requirements that include the time frame on when you’ll want to start, delivery objectives, and any special packing requirements you may need. Preparing this information ahead of time will help you determine what specific services you’ll need.
Perform Freight Forwarding Industry Research
Research what international freight shippers can and can’t do. Find out what their responsibilities are as well as what you will be responsible for. Learn as much as you can about international treaties, regulations, and industry terms. This will help you make an informed choice.
Multiple Shipment Types
When researching international freight forwarding services, ask if they are able to handle multiple types of shipments. Do they have experience importing and exporting air and ocean cargo? Are they equipped to handle multiple modes of transport, commodities, and destinations? Some freight forwarding companies are not set up to deal with multiple combinations. Ask them for specific examples of previous shipments that are similar to the ones you are going to need.
Operations And Shipping Management
You will want to find out who you will need to contact in order to submit documents and to reach if any problems occur. Depending on the company’s freight forwarding process, this could be one person or several people. You will also want to find out their preferred methods of communication, whether that be by automatic web tracking, email, or phone.
Network of Agents
You will also want to know if they have a network of agents within the country you are planning to ship to. These agents can resolve issues that come up such as port strikes and custom delays. Do they have multiple service contracts with air, land, and ocean carriers? It’s a good idea to have backup alternatives in case space upon your normal shipping vessel becomes an issue for any reason. For example, the plane manufacturer Boeing stated in 2012 that cargo-only aircrafts can handle approximately 60% of all global air freight shipments.
Research international freight forwarding services thoroughly before making any decisions on who to choose. Take your time. The last thing you want is a damaged reputation from making the wrong wrong decision too hastily. By following these tips, you’ll be able to make an informed decision that will help your business succeed long into the future.