Understanding Freight Forwarding
Transporting goods from one place to another, be it domestically or internationally, is a complex process that requires in-depth knowledge of border control, customs, insurance, country-by-country legislation and more. As there are many different forms of transportation, it’s also worth seeking out specialist freight forwarding services that can be tailored to a client’s shipment needs. So, let’s find out more about how freight forwarding actually works.
What do Freight Forwarding Companies Do?
Simply put, freight forwarding companies ensure a client’s shipment reaches its destination in the most economical, safe and affordable way. A time-critical logistics specialist will discuss deadlines, work out the best routes and analyse the most efficient transport methods. If a client needs to transport medical supplies urgently to a remote location, for example, a chartered flight would be ideal as it doesn’t abide by the restrictions and schedules of other freight or passenger planes. On the other hand, if time is not so pressing and only a short distance needs to be covered, then a basic land forwarding operation can be arranged.
Freight forwarding companies work with importers and exporters to ensure the goods have accurate documentation so they can achieve customs clearance. They then organise transportation through a network of contacts to move goods from the point of origin – which could be a factory or warehouse – to the required destination. They will find, negotiate and book with the best sea, land or air freight partners on the client’s behalf, coordinating any haulage and onward delivery needs. Most freight forwarding companies also provide product tracking services, so that a client knows when their goods have arrived safely.
Why Use a Freight Forwarder?
There are many reasons why using a freight forwarder is a good idea. Firstly, it provides a single point of contact for all your shipment needs. In a time-critical emergency, you can simply call upon one company and get the answers you need. Secondly, freight forwarders know which documents to complete and how to fill them in properly without error. Mistakes can cause time-consuming delays, so it’s not worth the risk of trying to operate without a knowledgeable and reliable logistics partner.
Freight forwarders also have an extensive network of providers and can tap into this to find the right services, routes and transportation for client needs. As they have ongoing arrangements with shipping, haulage and warehousing firms worldwide, they can draw on these connections to negotiate much more affordable rates on your behalf, saving you money in the long-run.
Using a freight forwarder can bring ultimate peace of mind and relieve stress. With professionals by your side, you won’t miss anything essential and can ensure your company operates as smoothly as possible. A single mistake can result in a backlog of raw products which can in turn impact factory production and such like, so it’s really important to find a freight forwarder you can trust.
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