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International Freight Shipping – Sea v Air Shipping
Tuesday, 20 February 2018 at 12:22
There are two main options for those businesses and individuals that want to ship goods overseas. You can go for international freight shipping by sea or by air. The first option has been around for quite some time now, but the latter is gaining more and more popularity. Consider the benefits and drawbacks of both options and your individual needs to make a final decision.
The cost of this international freight shipping option is naturally the first factor to evaluate it on. The sea forwarders set a price per container. The main container sizes are 20 'and 40'. If you do not have sufficient load to fill a container, the price is charged per cubic meter. Given this, the larger the volume of the consignment is the more cost-efficient the shipment will be. That is why sea shipping is considered the better option for large volumes of goods and for cargo that is large and has irregular shape.
The speed of sea transport is not particularly high. This is mainly due to the size and weight of the vessels used. At the same time, the transport is well organized with many ports being close to major industrial and commercial centres. You can expect your goods to travel from a couple of weeks to around two months depending on the distance to the destination.
The international freight shipping by sea is fairly reliable. The vessels undergo inspection to confirm that they are in good condition when they leave the port. Most ships are designed to overcome all kinds of weather conditions so that they can keep their schedule. Delays do occur, but you should not expect them to be for more than one or two days.
The cost of the air transport of goods is determined on the basis of both the weight and volume of the consignment. Air shipping is generally more expensive than its counterpart. However, it may turn out to be cheaper for smaller shipments that can not fill up a standard sea carrier container.
This type of international freight shipping is a lot faster than its alternative. It is between 15 and 30 times quicker. Indeed, the goods can arrive at the designated airport within one or two days after being picked up.
Just like sea transportation, air transportation can get affected by bad weather and other adverse circumstances such as strikes. However, it is fairly reliable especially if the air carrier has extensive operations and a large number of flights daily.
Choose the type of international freight shipping depending on your goals and budget.