If your business is involved in exporting or importing, be it raw materials or finished goods, you may find the services of a freight forwarding agent or company quite useful. If you have a consignment of goods that need to be transported from one country to another, then a freight forwarding agent will find the most economical or fastest route, depending on your demands and book the required transportation.
Most of the freight forwarding companies provide a portfolio of services and may even have specialist skills in certain modes of transport. Instead of choosing separate firms for freight forwarding and distribution, most of the logistic and transport operators are now able to offer comprehensive or full-package freight forwarding services.
So, what services should you expect from a freight forwarder?
In addition to organizing for transportation, these agents or companies also offer services such as:
For your products to pass through customs, you need to have them cleared. Customs clearance can be an overwhelming process due to the paperwork involved. It is also specific to each country and dependent on the tax or duty payments needed.
Accidents happen and to protect your goods from damage or theft during transit, you need insurance coverage. Competent freight forwarders will ensure this is in place.
Documentation i.e., Airway Bills and Bills of Landing
These may be required in order to release payment for the shipment.
This service is offered to ascertain that the correct goods are collected, stored and delivered safely.
The Advantages of Using a Freight Forwarding Company
Availing the services of a freight forwarder, either directly or through your logistics company can save you a lot of time that you would have spent on the tasks mentioned above. Handing over these tasks to a freight forwarder also allows you to focus on other key aspects of your business. Using the skills and knowledge of an expert gives you peace of mind that your items will arrive at the right destination and on time.
Most business, especially the smaller ones tend to think that they can save money by making international transportation arrangements themselves but this could not be further from the truth. If you don’t have the knowledge and experience in making export and import arrangements, you will end up wasting time and money in the process. Since freight companies specialize in dealing with distribution companies all over the world on a daily basis, they are certainly able to achieve economies of scale, which benefits you as well.