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You need to consider ocean freight when you begin shipping large volumes of freight. From choosing the right mode of transportation to calculating transit times and costs, here is your guide to ocean travel.

Ocean Freight Meaning: What Is Ocean Freight?

Shipment of goods by sea via shipping containers is known as ocean freight transport.

Most importers and exporters transport their goods by sea. 9 out of 10 shipments are sent by ocean freight or sea freight. International freight transport modes (courier, air freight standard, express air freight) are all faster, but they are also more expensive. Smaller shipments, and products with high values, are typically sent via these other modes.

For those whose air freight is too expensive but ocean shipping too slow, freight forwarders offer express shipping. Faster than air freight, but may be less expensive. In its system, ocean freight processes are streamlined and only higher-quality trucking services and faster ocean services are used.

Why Ship By Sea?

Capacity and value One container holds 10000 beer bottles! And ocean freight is cheaper. The cost of air freight typically exceeds 500 kg for shipments weighing more than that. Calculate the dimensional weight or actual weight of your shipments using this chargeable weight calculator. Our FBX index contains live international shipping rates.

In the case of dangerous goods, international law, national law, carrier organization regulations, and individual carrier regulations all play a role in restricting and defining who can transport them. Gases (such as argon) are generally restricted as air freight rather than ocean freight. lamp bulbs), all things flammable (e.g. For example, perfume, Samsung Galaxy Note 7); toxic or corrosive substances (e.g. batteries), magnetic substances (e.g. ), oxidizers and biochemical products (e.g., medical devices), and public health risks (e.g., pollution and industrial accidents). untanned hides). The Hazardous Material Table provides further information.

Seaborne CO2 emissions are minuscule in comparison with airborne CO2 emissions. According to this research, the transportation of 2 tonnes by ocean freight for 5000 kilometers will result in 150 kg of CO2 emissions, compared to 6605 kg of CO2 emissions by air freight.

ocean freight

What Are The Downsides Of Ocean Freight?

Planes are 30 times faster than ocean liners. Aircraft can cruise at 575 mph, while ocean liners operate at 16-18 mph. The air freight route from China to the US, therefore, usually takes at least 20 days longer than ocean freight.

It takes more days for ocean freight than air freight due to port congestion, customs delays, and bad weather conditions. The tracking technology used by air cargo is often far more advanced than that used by ocean freight. Thus, ocean freight is more likely to go missing than air freight. This is especially the case when a shipment is less than a container load. Despite that, digitization has improved ocean freight reliability.

The chances of ocean freight getting damaged or destroyed are greater than those of air cargo. Due to longer transit times and more movement on ships, it is in transit longer. Do not worry too much about ocean cargo falling off of ships. While the urban myth says there are 10000 lost containers annually, it's more like 546 of the 120 million container movements that fall into the drink. Shipping Even less likely is piracy. Among the hotspots in recent years have been the Horn of Africa, the Gulf of Guinea, and the Malacca Straits.

Ocean Freight Services

Sea freight services also fall into two types: full container loads (FCLs) and less than container loads (LCLs). A LCL container is used to pack several shipments together. As a result, there will be more paperwork and additional physical work for the forwarder, consolidating multiple shipments into one container before the main transit and de-consolidating the shipments at the destination. This gives LCL three disadvantages:

Shipping by LCL takes longer than shipping by FCL. LCL typically requires an additional one or two weeks.

With LCL, there is a higher risk of damage, misplacement, and loss.

LCL costs more per cubic meter.

As shipping rates are lower for FCL, it may be worth using a full container once your shipment is large enough, even if you do not intend to fill the container completely. The tipping point between LCLs and FCLs (the smallest size of container is a 20-footer) is between 15 and 20 cubic meters.

Sea Freight Rates per kg

With the exception of especially heavy goods, most LCLs are priced per volume of goods, rather than weight.

You can use the following rules as a guide to selecting the most cost-effective mode for most products:

For shipments of 500 kg and more, air freight is no longer economical.

Shipments from China to the US take 30-40 days and cost around $2-$4 / kg.

Using air freight for a China-US shipment between 150 kg and 500 kg costs about $5-8 per kilo and can take 8-10 days.

Express air freight can be faster, but is more expensive.

If your packages are lighter than 150 kg, you can go by courier (express freight).

Ocean and sea freight rates and charges you will see in your quote include the following:

These items can be found on ocean freight invoices and quotes: