What is a Freight Forwarder:
- An international freight forwarder is a company that specializes in the movement of goods across international borders.
- They act as an intermediary between the shipper (the company that owns the goods) and the carrier (the company that transports the goods).
- Freight forwarding is a service that helps businesses ship goods internationally.
- Freight forwarders work with carriers to move goods from one place to another, and they can also provide other services such as customs clearance and cargo insurance.
- By using a freight forwarder, businesses can save time and money, and they can also gain access to a global network of carriers and other partners.
Freight forwarders can provide a wide range of services, including:
- Booking cargo space on ships and planes
- Preparing customs documentation
- Arranging for insurance
- Tracking shipments
- Resolving any problems that may arise
Types of International Freight Forwarders:
There are two main types of international freight forwarders:
NVOCCs (Non-Vessel Operating Common Carriers): NVOCCs are freight forwarders who do not own or operate their own vessels. Moreover, they reserve cargo space on ships operated by other carriers.
OFCs (Ocean Freight Consolidators):
OFCs, which stand for Ocean Freight Consolidators, focus on merging smaller packages from various senders into larger ones. Hence, this approach allows them to negotiate for lower freight rates from carriers.
6 Steps to Choose a Freight Forwarder:
Here are the best 6 steps to choose an international freight forwarder:
Know Your Needs:
- Understand what your business requires in transportation services and shipment volumes before searching for a logistics provider.
- Look for a forwarder that offers growth opportunities and maintains a personal connection with you.
Industry Experience & Reach:
- Search for a forwarder experienced in your industry.
- Moreover, make sure they have a global presence and are conveniently located near your suppliers and customers.
- Look for local expertise in your field.
- Choose a forwarder that can handle uncertain situations effectively.
- Ask about their risk management strategies, including cargo insurance, and ensure open communication during challenging times.
- Verify if the forwarder provides a wide range of services, such as air, sea, and road freight, along with warehouse and logistics solutions.
- Discuss your complete supply chain needs to ensure they offer all required services.
Communication and Support:
- Make good communication and customer service a priority.
- Additionally, select a forwarder that provides online tracking, timely updates, and personal assistance for your queries or concerns.
Licenses and Certifications:
- Check if the forwarder holds the necessary permits, documentation, and licenses to handle various types of cargo, especially sensitive goods.
- Ensure these are openly displayed or accessible.
International freight forwarders streamline global shipping for businesses by handling tasks such as cargo booking, customs paperwork, insurance, and issue resolution. Moreover, selecting the right forwarder includes considering your shipping requirements, expertise, risk management, service offerings, communication, and possessing suitable licenses for smooth and cost-efficient global shipments.
Easyvessel is the best platform to connect multiple freight forwarders to get the best freight rates worldwide.
Frequently Asked Questions
To choose a good freight forwarder:
Understand Needs: Know what your business requires for shipping.
Consider Experience: Look for expertise in your industry and global reach.
Manage Risks: Ensure they handle uncertainties well and provide solutions.
Service Range: Check for a variety of services, from shipping modes to issue resolution.
Communication: Prioritize clear and responsive communication.
Verify Licensing: Ensure they possess the necessary permits and certifications.
Choosing a freight forwarder can make international shipping easier. They manage the logistics, paperwork, and transportation for your goods, saving time and ensuring smooth, reliable deliveries.
The most crucial criteria to choose a freight forwarder is their ability to meet your shipping needs effectively and reliably, ensuring they offer the required services, have a good track record, and communicate well.