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What is a Container Freight Station or CFS?

Shipping Terms
4 min read
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CFS shipping is an essential concept in B2B logistic businesses. In this article, we will discuss a container freight station in its use. We’ll be explaining the meaning of this term and how it applies to different shipments.

In many cases, all goods have specific group divisions. Sometimes, it may be due to the size of the container load. In other cases, the division may depend on the type of goods. The place where this grouping happens is what we refer to as a container freight station.

Essentially, a container freight station is a location or building where consolidation and deconsolidation of goods occur. Remember, for smooth logistic processes it’s better to move cargo that belongs to the same group together. Therefore, this calls the need for a station where this grouping and consolidation can take place.

When does a CFS Station is used for shipments?

A CFS station is useful for less-than-truckload cargo. For this shipping mode, businesses have to consolidate freight from different clients to fill up the truckload. To do this, they’ll need a terminal to do CFS transfers.

In many instances, those new to the logistics scene confuse a container yard with a container freight station. Of course, they may seem similar; but they are quite different. The container yard (CY) is a unique area on the port marked out for storing full container goods.

On the contrary, a container freight station has vital features that are different from the CY. Here is a perfect explanation of a container freight station:

  • Mostly, a container freight station deals with less than container load. Although, it’s also possible to keep full container loads at these stations.
  • A container freight station doesn’t need to be inside the port. Mostly, it can be close to the port or train and truck stations.
  • In many cases, the owner of a CFS is a freight company. Mostly, they are in charge of the inspection and approval of goods.

CFS to CFS pier to pier

Principally, this term often comes up on the official shipping documents. It refers to goods loaded and grouped by a shipper into containers. Also, it relates to goods offloaded by the shipper when it gets to the CFS or container freight station.

Container freight station shipment

This is also called a CFS shipment. Usually, it has an official document (bill of lading) that spells out the agreement between the parts involved in a logistics delivery.

Container freight station shipment services

This term explains the CFS service B2B logistics offers to businesses or customers exporting cargo. Some duties include:

  • The movement of free containers from the CY to the CFS.
  • Storage of the containers.
  • Moving containers to and away from a container freight station.
  • Serving customers and exporters with receipts.
  • Tallying
  • Stuffing and sealing of containers

What Is the Purpose of a Container Freight Station?

A CFS warehouse has the general purpose of making importation and exportation more accessible. Some of the goals are:

  • To provide a place to pack cargo that doesn’t completely fill a container
  • To move these goods quickly to the right destination
  • Provide a station for storing, grouping, and ungrouping all cargo
  • Cargo transfer to recipients
  • Inspection of CFS freight
  • A station for deconsolidation of LTL shipments

What Are the Benefits of a Container Freight Station?

A CFS will speed up the shipment and transportation process, and as long as their facilities are prepared, it ensures optimum control over the goods. With the correct performance, it will also save costs.

The business of freight shipping and logistics is simple when you fully understand the terms involved. However, some of these terms may be technical, confusing, and similar. In this article, we have simplified the concept of container freight stations.

We strongly recommend working with a freight forwarding company if you are importing or exporting for the first time, as they will help you through the entire process.

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