freight booking

Are you planning to enter the global marketplace? Do you lack experience in international shipping? If yes, one of the first things you must learn is the art of booking freight. If you book the freight correctly, it’s unlikely that your consignments will not reach the right people at the right time. The section below discusses the things you must remember when booking freight for international shipping.

Country Restrictions

You cannot export internationally without knowing a particular country’s export and import regulations. Some nations control or prohibit the export/import of certain products and goods. This means such regulations can stop your goods from entering the country of import. For example, Canada follows a quota agreement when it comes to importing items such as lumber and sugar. China prohibits or restricts the import of items like antiques, jewellery, ivory, etc.

So, never forget to read through the import regulations of the country you are shipping to before freight booking.

Customs and Tariffs

You must know that every international shipment needs to clear customs to enter the country of import. You will need to fill out a few forms to allow your shipments to clear customs. Some of the export documents you might need to fill out are:

  • Proforma invoice
  • Packing list
  • Commercial invoice
  • Import licenses
  • Export licenses
  • Dangerous goods certificate (if you are transporting potentially dangerous products)
  • Airway bill and more

If you want your products to reach the right place at the right time, make sure that the right documents accompany your products. Proper management of paperwork and detailed documentation prevent delays in customs clearance.

Shipping tariffs and customs duties are fees that the exporters need to pay to the shipping company and the importing country’s customs department, respectively. You must be ready to pay all nation-specific taxes and duties to avoid problems during customs clearance.

Shipping Companies

The world of online trade is getting bigger with every passing day. Consequently, a new freight shipping firm is starting operations almost every other day. This has made the job of finding a reliable and responsible international freight shipping service provider extremely difficult. Exporters also struggle to find a reasonably priced shipping company.

If you want to make the right pick, consider a few things before taking the final call. Firstly, you should shortlist the most experienced shipping companies. The shipping company you are relying on should have the knowledge and experience in managing the international landscape. This will allow you to navigate the complex steps of international shipping seamlessly. You should also consider factors like:

  • The reputation of the shipping company
  • Safety record
  • Shipping routes
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Relationship with various carriers
  • Tracking ability
  • Pricing
  • Insurance protection

Product Packaging

You must take care of product packaging if you want to ship your products safely. If you use the right kind of materials and techniques to pack the goods you are exporting, the contents of the shipment will remain protected. Additionally, high-quality packaging also helps in enhancing the reputation of a brand. The unboxing experience also becomes better. However, you must remember that certain packaging materials can end up increasing the overall cost of the shipment.


Shippers spend a lot of time to find out whether it would be a good idea to insure or if it will be more profitable to move ahead without insurance. This happens more often when shipping products internationally. You might use the most secure packaging materials and techniques. Still, you must take preventive measures to avoid losses if your goods get stolen, lost, or damaged. This makes buying insurance extremely important. You should purchase insurance cover for all your international shipments even if you are not exporting high-value items.

Return Policies

Like they do in the case of domestic shipments, buyers can also return international shipments. The freight shipping service provider you choose must allow international returns to make things simpler both for you and your customers.

Final Words

To make booking freight easier, you should consider using online freight shortlisting and booking platforms. This will make knowing the vessel schedules, comparing rates, and selecting and booking containers easier for you. You’ll need very little time to spot the company matching your shipping budget and other requirements.

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