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admin | Category: Shipping Container Dimensions | 05.07.2014
FCL COMMERCIAL CARGO (Full Container Load): Shipping entire containers that contain a commercial cargo. In international shipping using ocean freight service, LCL is an abbreviation for "Less than Container Load".
If you are a commercial shipper and your international shipment is considerable small, i.e. If you are shipping Household Goods or Personal effects, then there are many advantages in using the LCL ocean freight service offered by direct or indirect international shipping companies (Freight Forwarders, NVOCCs, VOCCs) VS. When you share a 40 foot sea freight container with one or more exporters, you pay ONLY for the space used in the container, but NOT for the entire container.
As a rule transit time on your international shipment will be the same or even less as if you would ship a full ocean freight container. If you self-deliver your boxed cargo to international shipping company's ocean freight shipping terminal, you may request to palletize your loose boxes into one or more shipping units at the shipping terminal. You can ship motorized vehicle using our sea freight service for shipping vehicles in containers or Ro-Ro, but LCL. However, even drained motor parts may be considered dangerous goods by the steamship line (VOCC) when cargo is delivered to the origin shipping terminal for the international shipment from US. If motor parts are considered dangerous goods by the steamship line then additional documents related to shipping dangerous goods must be provided and hazardous surcharges apply. International ocean freight shipping rates may be ALL-IN (all-inclusive) or to be subject to surcharges related to a particular origin-destination country. Important!: Do not confuse total shipping cost on your international shipment with an ocean freight rate obtained from an international shipping company in an ocean freight quote provided. Typically international LCL sea freight rates offered by international shipping companies on EXPORT cargo from the USA include origin charges, but do not include destination charges. International ocean freight shipping rates offered by international shipping companies on IMPORT to the USA may not include charges at origin as well.
As a rule, origin charges at CFS are included in the international ocean freight rate. Be prepared to pay destination charges at the destination upon arrival of your ocean freight to the destination. However, in order to use the international LCL ocean freight service all your shipping items must be properly boxed or crated and labeled for shipping purpose.
An international ocean freight freight forwarder should guide shipper in complexity of international shipment's procedures. Notice: some countriers require proforma commercial invoices for international personal shipments as well. Laws allow to your consignee working on the cargo recovery directly with your destination county's customs and other parties related to your international ocean freight shipment. When it comes to international freight forwarding and transportation, selecting the right freight forwarder is like choosing the right supplier, vendor or accountant; you are choosing a partner that will help your business succeed. To start with, the size of your company shouldn’t determine the size of your freight forwarder (size of of your freight forwarder is defined as a combination of volume shipped, revenues and # of employees). 6)           Depending on the mode of transport: what size ocean container, what volume of air cargo, or size domestic cargo will I be shipping? 9)           Is there any sort of import or export license required for the import or export of my cargo depending on the commodity and ultimate destination of the cargo?
12)   Will I ship my cargo in an ocean container, RORO vessel, breakbulk vessel, airplane, truck, barge, rail or other mode of transport?
1)           Understand your internal requirements – know what you specifically will need before you even begin looking for a forwarder. 2)           Research their industry – know what your forwarder can and cannot do for you. 7)           Ask if they have a network of agents in your destination country – this can be vital for any DDU, DAP, DDP shipments and also if your customer overseas has any unforeseen issues such as a port strike, customs issue or other delay. 8)           Put together a checklist of requirements – this includes everything from your time frame on when you want to begin, objectives such as speed of delivery, commodities being shipped, special packaging requirements, terms of sale (incoterms), volume, etc.
9)           Do they have multiple service contracts – this is important when space availability on a vessel, airline or trucking company becomes an issue and you need an alternative.
10)   Does the freight forwarder have cargo insurance – This is important as they should be able to issue insurance policies for your shipments in case of theft, damage, or loss.
Freight Forwarder – freight forwarder, forwarder, or forwarding agent is a person or company that organizes shipments for individuals or  corporations  to get goods from the  manufacturer  or producer to a market, customer or final point of distribution.
OTI – Ocean Transportation Intermediary (OTI) is licensed by the FMC to be an ocean freight forwarder, a non-vessel operating common carrier (NVOCC), or an ocean freight forwarder and NVOCC. IAC – Indirect Air Carrier (IAC) refers to any person or entity within the United States not in possession of an FAA air carrier operating certificate, that ships cargo belonging to any other person or entity. Independent Freight Forwarder – an independent freight forwarder is one that is not part of the Global 25 Freight Forwarders. The term freight forwarder is also overused and a very general term that applies to a long list of service providers.
Determining whether they are a “3PL” or “4PL” is less important than really understanding what services they offer that meet your needs and which licenses or certificates they have from their respective governing body such as the FMC or IATA. DO NOT let cheap freight rates or low logistics costs for services such as warehousing, ocean freight, air freight or other service be the sole determinate for which forwarder you choose. Picking the right freight forwarder will help your company focus on its core competency since freight rates are somewhat commoditized and service is paramount to price in logistics.
The right freight forwarder should be experienced enough to balance your company’s operational, speed and cost requirements, various shipment choices including ocean, truck, rail, barge, or plane.
Keep in mind that when it comes to compliance, your freight forwarder is there to guide you and offer its know-how and experience, but they are not your compliance department.


Regulators will hold the exporter responsible (not the forwarder) if information submitted to US Customs for imports or exports are mis-declared or inaccurate. Make it your company’s duty to provide Classifications (both Schedule B numbers for exports and HTS numbers for imports) and not rely on the freight forwarder. Converting a shipping container into a house is one of the latest trends in modular housing. There are several ways to build or buy a home built from shipping containers, and each option is cost effective in it’s own way.
The highest end of the shipping container home market is a custom designed container house. As with a traditional home, the cost of a shipping container home varies greatly with the amount of square footage, features, and amenities that you would like to include.
This international shipping term is commonly used to describe an international ocean freight service that designed for shipping boxed, crated or palletized cargo that cannot fill an entire 20 or 40 foot sea freight container.
Since international cargo vessels capacity is not in fact limited by weight of cargo, but by hold of the ship, in general WEIGHT IN INTERNATIONAL LCL SHIPPING IS NOT A PRICING FACTOR (you may find more about dimensional weight in ocean freight and inland (LTL) trucking in our website). Violations to these regulations can result in detention, confiscation, or destruction of cargo, as well as fines and criminal charges. Department of Motor Vehicles) registration (auto, motorcycles, mopeds, jet skis, ATV’s) will not be permitted to an international shipment from US as LCL freight. Freight cost per a motorized vehicle should be equal to freight cost of shipping a mid-size car, but always must be re-confirmed upon a booking request. International transportation company (freight forwarder, NVOCC, international moving company) or shipping line (SSL, VOCC)  will not be held responsible for any delays or difficulties resulting from the failure to properly drain fluids or arrange proper packing prior to shipping, nor for additional charges incurred as a result thereof. Refer to samples of calculations of total shipping costs on Export and Import cargo to and from the USA below.
These charges are payable to the destination station (CFS - Container Freight Station, international ocean freight carrier's receiving terminal). If the destination agent is a CFS itself, then this charge can be included in a Port of entry CFS release. Covers express mail for payments and shipping documents transfers in order to get an entry and entry summary within a time slot allowed by U.S. However, it is shipper's responsibility to provide all necessary shipping documents related to his international ocean freight shipment that required by origin and destination countries officials.
However, having a complete Valued Packing List submitted at origin, upon destination customs request, you will be able easy to transfer your Valued Packing List into a proforma commercial invoice required by the customs.
Fumigation Certificate– Certification that cargo and packing materials were fumigated after cargo had been containerized and is free of infestation.
FCL ocean freight (Full Container Load): International Shipping of entire seafreight containers with Household Goods and Personal effects (No motor vehicles). International shipping of cars and other types of motor vehicles (small boats, motorcycles, jets etc) consolidated in multimodal ocean freight containers. International shipping RO-RO: Shipping cars, trucks, trailers, boats, heavy equipment etc from the USA overseas.
Your freight forwarder should be a trusted partner for your logistics needs, that is, if they are doing their job right. Many large companies use small freight forwarders and many small companies use large freight forwarders. Determine what mode of transport and what specific services you will need and what volume you plan to ship before contacting a forwarder. You may only need to import using ocean freight from China now, but what if you needed to import from Vietnam using air freight, or export to Dubai using RORO or Breakbulk service for oil drilling equipment? Joining reputable freight forwarding associations such as WCA requires financial strength, operational efficiency, integrity and many other requirements. This relates to who will be your point of contact for submitting documents, coordinating the shipment and who to ask for when there is a problem. Similar to a Freight Forwarder but typically they have better ocean freight rates and can issue bills of lading. An IAC undertakes to engage indirectly in air transportation of property and uses for all or any part of such transportation the services of a passenger air carrier. They do not have an office in every major country and use different agents around the world for various services depending on what their customer’s requirements are. All of these services are grouped under “Freight Forwarder” and not all freight forwarders offer all of these services.
Create a checklist of requirements you have in order for the freight forwarder to understand your needs. Freight forwarding is a service just like choosing a software vendor, and must be treated as such when inquiring and seeking out a freight forwarder as your partner. You are ultimately responsible for declaring your cargo and whether or not it requires any sort of export license such as a Simplified Network Application Process Redesign (SNAP-R) application which is for submitting Export License applications, Re-export applications, Commodity Classification requests, Encryption Registrations, Agriculture License Exception notices, and associated supporting documents to the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS).
Forwarders rely and declare based on information they are provided by the exporter or shipper of record. The Exporter or Importer should is also responsible for any Licenses, Certificates or Authorizations required for the cargo.
Due diligence on your partners, customers, vendors, and any export or import compliance is vital to a successful logistics operation. While container homes are environmentally sustainable and ideal for green living, the designs and floor plans are incredibly creative and are considered attractive and stylish by even the most discerning of home owners.
Hiring an architect to design a custom home gives you the opportunity to provide input on the structure and your specific needs, and the architect can take into consideration the environment and natural surroundings where the home will be built. Increasingly, shipping container houses are being treated similar to modular homes and designed, assembled, and delivered direct from the factory.


It’s completely possible for a creative individual to take the initiative and build their dream container home by themselves. Shipping rates and procedures for commercial cargo are different from international shipping of Household Goods and Personal effects. SHIPPING COSTS IN INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING MAY NOT INCLUDE ORIGIN AND OR DESTINATION CHARGES. This is due to US Customs Regulations that will not recognize any ocean freight carrier's warehouse as an exam site for inspection. Notice that this rule may not apply if you are using shipping service from an international moving company. However, an international moving company may send to you a surveyor, estimate packing cost and provide total pricing for your international shipment. Depending on destination ocean freight carrier's station policy it varies between 7 to 14 days. IMPORTANT!: Shipping rates and procedures are different from international shipping of Household Goods and Personal effects. In this fast-changing world which is highly reliant on supply chain optimization, cost efficiency, timeliness, and consistent service, shippers, importer, exporters and others involved in the supply chain must make a determination on which freight forwarder to select for their international and domestic logistic needs. Therefore there are many other questions that must be answered and other criteria analyzed to conclude which freight forwarder is right for you and your company. This is the “help me help you” part that the forwarder may say to you if you don’t come prepared. Read various blogs, regulations, industry terms, international treaties and anything else required for your shipments. Do they have the experience, know-how, and partners around the world to handle your shipments? If a freight forwarder is a member of a reputable association, the chances of them handling your shipment with care and diligence is higher than if they were not a member. This may all be one person who is dedicated to handling your shipment A-Z or several people, each with defined responsibilities for your account. Each Indirect Air Carrier must adopt and carry out a security program that meets TSA requirements. You may not even need all of these services, but may need them in the future, so knowing what these services are and what they can do for you is important.
Keep a proactive approach to your shipments; don’t rely on your freight forwarder for everything, because ultimately you are responsible if something happens with your shipment such as a mis-declared shipment or incorrect HTS classification. Many freight forwarders offer teaser rates to customers in the hopes of roping them in and then charging higher prices for other services or destination fees, which is incredibly unethical and time consuming for companies to resolve. Understand Export Administration Regulations (EAR), Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) regulations, as well as International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) if they apply to your shipments. These factories often have plans and pictures that you can select from, and in some cases you can provide input and receive some customized features. There are lots of great books and container home floor plans available on the market; many of them are very specific in providing details of what you need, and exactly how much of it. See samples of total shipping costs calculations on Import or Export to or from the USA below. International moving companies may provide to you all-in service for a shipping cost including all charges related to your international shipment. Make sure that contact information of consignee initially provided in your booking request and transffered to your international ocean freight bill of lading is correct and valid. You must NOT use this pricing schedule on international shipping of Household Goods and Personal effects.
Before we get to 10 tips on how to choose a freight forwarder, there is some additional information to mention. It also shows they have financial strength because there are only a handful of legitimate, quality freight forwarding networks that really vets their members. Your freight forwarder will be your “outsourced” logistics company and must therefore have a full understanding of your company’s operations, requirements, and processes.
Not complying with import or export controls can put you in violation and result in heavy penalties. For this reason, ask potential forwarders what experience they have in your type of shipment. The only way they can do that properly is if you provide them with all the information they need in order to properly scope out your logistics needs.
Many exporters believe that just because a shipment is Ex-Works, they are not responsible for any part of the transaction once it leaves their dock. Usually they should be able to bring up an example of a similar shipment they handled for someone else. This is false, many times the exporter, even though the incoterms is Ex-Works, is considered the US Principal Party of Interest (USPPI) and is therefore responsible that the Electronic Exporter Information (EEI) submitted through the Automated Export System (AES) is filed correctly for each of its shipments.
The best way to ensure proper declaration of your shipment is to give an accurate Shipper’s Letter of Instruction (SLI) to your forwarder or your customer’s forwarder.
Government-related charges, which in general consist of a Customs Bond, Merchandise fee, and Harbor Maintenance Fee.



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