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In an increasingly globalized world with segmented economies, shipping agents find themselves dealing with more trading companies and their foreign-to-foreign transactions than the old-fashioned factory-to-importer shipments. The success of such contracts typically hinges on the ability of trading agents to conceal the factory’s contact from the end buyer through the issuance of a switch Bill of Lading. What is a switch Bill of Lading? A switch Bill of Lading refers to a second set of Bill of Lading issued by the carrier (or its agent) to substitute the original bills of lading issued at the time of shipment.
In recent years, the hot topic of digital freight forwarding has been about technology, digitization, and automation. In comparison with other industries including as air travel, the shipping industry is considerably backwards when it comes to digitalization. There doesn’t appear to be a sense of urgency to adopt and embrace technology and its advantages. The industry knows this and is certainly reacting. For starters, shipping lines Maersk and Hapag Lloyd now offer instant quotes on their online page.
We’re still more than a year away from seeing a finalized version of the next edition of Incoterms. But already, there have been expectations and even certain speculations from the ocean freight industry, which is generating some buzz as to what changes we can expect in Incoterms 2020. So now seems like a good time to dive into the history of Incoterms. When were they first implemented? Why were they needed?
It cannot be argued that technology is paving the way and opening new opportunities for exciting advances in the ocean freight industry. One of the most prominent efforts in this direction has come in the form of automation of terminals and ports. Responding to market demand for automation According to B2B research group Marketsandmarkets, the semi and fully automated container terminal market is currently worth $9.09 billion. This is expected to jump 20% to $10.
Factors to consider when choosing your port of origin and destination There are multiple factors that play into deciding the best route for your cargo. For most, price tends to be the determining factor as its quantitative nature makes it easy to compare and value. In most cases, the price factor is also tied to the port location and whether it’s close to the factory or warehouse. But don’t confuse price for value.
Questions to ask your freight forwarder to help your business succeed The ocean freight industry is a complex one. And you’ll want to make sure the people you work with are a right fit for your business, especially the ones responsible for transporting your cargo. Different freight forwarders operate differently. So before deciding, it’s always best to clear any doubts you have about their services, their locations, and even their network.
Less common shipping charges shippers should be aware of EFAF, B/L, GA, COD, LOLO, … The ocean freight industry is not short on acronyms and abbreviations and those familiar with it can definitely vouch for it. The countless articles that have been written about the different abbreviations in shipping is probably evidence enough, and that’s not including Incoterms. Most articles tackle the main abbreviations involved in container shipping rates, which provides important information for both importers and exporters alike.
As we approach the end of the decade, preparations to introduce a revised set of Incoterms are starting to intensify. Come January 1st, 2020, industries dealing with the international transportation such as the ocean freight industry will bid farewell to the current version of Incoterms, and ring in the new. Incoterms 2020 will see significant changes that will affect importers and exporters across the globe. In this article, we’ll discuss the main changes that are reportedly being deliberated.
It’s common knowledge that conditions out at sea may get rough, which is why many freight forwarders emphasize on the importance of properly packing and securing your shipment. But given the unpredictability of mother nature, shipments are never entirely safe. Your lashes are securely in place, your pallets are properly stacked, and your weight distribution is right. You’ve packed and secured your shipment by the book and so well that you’re thinking about teaching a 101 course on how to prepare your shipment.
Deadlines and documents to be aware of for your international move Moving internationally is a long process. From the day the decision is made to settling in in your new home, months will have passed. It takes delicate planning and keeping a strict eye on deadlines to make sure everything goes smoothly. Planning should begin as soon as possible. Even prior to deciding, you should already start looking into the history, political situation, healthcare system, tax regulations, and language barriers (if any), etc, of your destination country.