When you ship goods by sea, there are two costs that you need to bear in mind. The first, and the most obvious, is the money that you are going to need to pay to your carrier. In addition to this, you are going to need to pay costs to the port for the handling of the goods. It is very rare that the carrier will work this into their own costs.
If you wish to secure the best possible rates when it comes to ocean shipping, you should try and ensure that your products are sent on scheduled services. It is not the ideal solution if your goods need to get to a specific place at a very specific time, but it is going to be affordable. Those who may be shipping huge quantities of goods may wish to look into chartering their own ship. This is, of course, very expensive. Even the largest companies will not even go down that route unless they have to.
Costs that you may need to take into account include, but are not limited to, the following:
- In some cases, the rate that you pay may be dependent on the goods or cargo which is being shipped. Obviously, cargo which requires a great deal more care to ensure it gets to a destination safely will cost a whole lot more.
- If the port is fairly busy, you may need to pay a congestion charge. This fee can actually increase the cost of ocean shipping quite substantially.
- The vast majority of shipping costs, no matter where you are sending the goods to or from, will be quoted in US dollars. You will, therefore, need to check the exchange rate. You will also want to consider the exchange rate throughout the journey of the products. Remember, exchange rates can go up and down which can drastically change the cost of shipping at a moment’s notice.
- Fuel prices may go up. You will need to bear this in mind because any increases in fuel prices will need to be paid for by you.
- There may be additional surcharges depending on where the goods are being shipped to. In most cases, this will be a security surcharge put in place by the receiving port. However, the shipping company who is handling your goods may also have charges of their own in order to stick to local regulations. You will need to find out all about this before you ship your products.
Your load is also going to have a huge impact on the price. The vast majority of shipping companies will price their service based upon a container load. This means that the more you put in your container, the less the shipping costs will be for the shipping. If you can’t fill a whole container, you can bring down the cost of shipping by looking into consolidation companies. These companies will put goods from a variety of different senders in one container which will cut down on the overall cost.