Freight forwarders are significant in the import and export of goods. In this guide, we will discuss their role in international trade and how you choose a reliable freight forwarder agent.
What is a freight forwarder?
Freight forwarders, in a nutshell, is agent to help you get goods from the factory or producer to the consignee or final point of distribution. Generally, It will provide a variety of transport services at competitive prices and arrange shipment for you.
An international freight forwarder not only formulates and organizes the seamless shipping of cargo to the final destination but also executes other duties to ensure you can receive the goods hassle-free. As your logistics partners, freight forwarders will handle the cargo delivery door to door.
Furthermore, they also process shipping needed paperwork, bill of lading, implement all-around transportation negotiations, and so on. If you are unsatisfied with the official shipping fees or need a risk assessment, freight forwarder companies will try their best to solve it all and meet your expectations.
What does a freight forwarder company do?
Import and export of cargo across borders can be pretty complicated. But if you work with a freight forwarder, it means you will have a professional freight carrier to serve you as below:
1. Diverse cargo shipping services
The primary logistic service that freight forwarding companies supports are:
– Air freight
– Sea freight
– Truck transport
– Railway transport
They will combine these main shipping methods to achieve coordination of inland transport and international delivery.
2. Preparation before import/export
A freight forwarder agent will formulate the best program and arrange a booking according to the shipping methods. If the cargo needs to be certified by customs before shipping, the freight forwarder will teach you what to prepare. Such as commercial invoices, packing lists, and other related documents applied to customs for import/export inspection. And they will submit the paperwork on your behalf.
3. Customs brokerage
The carrier should send the goods to the container yard, container freight station, or dock warehouses designated by the customs regulations when the goods enter or exit the country,
Freight forwarder companies can submit the specified certificates and documents for inspection, accept the examination of the goods and means of transport declared by the customs officers, and pay customs duties and other taxes collected by the customs following the law on your behalf.
4. Shipping insurance and claims
Sometimes there are uncontrolled accidents during the shipment. For this, the freight forwarders can support you with shipping insurance. It is a service that reimburses the goods which have been lost, stolen, or damaged in transit. Even if you are not an expert in this field, the freight agent can buy and arrange claims for you.
5. Shipping info tracking
After the cargo has been shipped, you want to track the detailed delivery information. The freight forwarder company also follows up on the shipping info, urges, and expedites the cargo with the carrier on your behalf.
6. Freight consolidation
Sometimes, you want to combine multiple shipments within a region into a single load and ship to a destination region. The freight forwarder allows you to get freight consolidation easier. They will contact and monitor carriers to arrange LTL shipment and so on.
7. Negotiating, scheduling, and warehousing
There are trivial and complicated steps when starting cargo shipping. Maybe you will be confused about FOB, DDP, EXW shipping, or other international trade shipping terms. With a freight forwarder, it will sort out all the processes and details you need to know.
Besides, they also sustain labeling, checking barcodes, warehousing (Amazon FBA pre-warehouse services）, etc. Expert freight forwarder companies can assist you in solving the necessary procedure would meet in a logistic delivery.
8. Risk assessment and management
If there is any issue with the cargo shipping, the freight forwarder agent can provide the best solution for you according to the situation. They will grasp logistic trends in advance to help you receive the goods through the best transportation combination.
With the assistance of a freight forwarder company, cargo shipment would not consume too much of your energy. It also means you can start shipping quickly without spending too much time learning professional knowledge about logistics.
Airsupply Logistics provides those complete services to help you ship your cargo. It also supports prompt online quotes from a wide range of freight carriers which means you can pick out by price, delivery time, or service grade.
Is freight forwarder services necessary for you?
If you work in an eCommerce business or cross-border trade, shipping is much critical part that links with your customers. Cooperating with a freight forwarder is particularly beneficial when internal resources are not versed in the international shipping process.
There are so many shipping documents and laws that can vary from country to country. The freight forwarders familiarize these customs clearance regulations, the limitations of different shipping methods, and much more. They can assure the safe and timely delivery of the goods and properly submit them to the consignee.
In addition, freight forwarder companies typically have access to shipping discounts to save your freight cost. Given the years of shipping experience and thorough services supplied by the forwarder, it can be a good investment in your international trade.
How to find a reliable freight forwarder company?
You could be overwhelmed with options to find freight forwarder agents. Search on Google, browse the list of freight forwarders with high reviews, try other peers’ picks, and much more. Whatever the methods you use, it’s wise to take a strategic view of the global freight forwarder.
For instance, good forwarder agents should embrace well-developed transportation networks and excellent problem-solving skills. Here are several essential points you can refer to select a shipping partner:
1. Industry Knowledge
First, international freight forwarders should be familiar with world shipping routes, the location of ports, inland distribution centers, etc. They need to know whether the destination port has special restrictions on the items or needs to apply for special relevant certificates.
Second, an experienced freight forwarder agent can provide appropriate carriers for customers and process the trouble with a quick response. They assist customers to reach the requirements of relevant regulations and letters of credit. But also provide customers with sundry agency services and supervision of goods in transit.
Reputation is always one of the standards to judge a company. A reputable freight forwarder company may have been in the market for many years and have high-quality freight service bases and logistics operations everywhere. Some of them you can search in Statista. They know what a local partner can rely on to respond quickly without sacrificing service quality.
4. Supply Chain
Top-notch freight forwarders have strong relationships with lots of well-known freight carriers. They also have reserved charter flights or booked a class with these carriers for seamless shipment services.
Now, you know the vital factors to look for when selecting a freight forwarder partner. But it is still not an easy task because of thousands of freight forwarders globally.
Why ASL can be your long-term shipping partner?
As a global freight forwarder company, Airsupply Logistics (ASL) has more than 1000 shipments/ 2000 tons of project goods per year. It supports customers with adequate logistic services.
Airsupply’s network of shipping providers is verified for reliability and service so you know that you are working with a reliable freight provider. With ASL, no matter whether sensitive goods, general or dangerous cargo, can be fast shipped and customs clearance.
What’s more, the team will be available online 24/7 to hold you back. Airsupply customized solutions are crafted from competitive price options to help you optimize your supply chain and avoid delays and risks. If you want a trustworthy freight forwarder partner, it is time to consider ASL expert forwarding services.