If your business needs to export from India and it are sizably large items in high volumes, then you will need FCL shipping method to transport your goods. You can export big items like furniture, electronics, and ceramics using these services. If you are not clear about FCL or Full Container Load then here is a comprehensive guide about FCL and its use in business.
FCL shipping is a sea shipping for cargo loads that can fill shipping containers of sizes 20’ or 40’. FCL shipping is different from LCL that uses shared container space and is less than container load. This container is loaded and sealed at the factory itself and unloaded only at the destination warehouse.
Read this full article to know everything about FCL shipping:
1. What is FCL shipping?
FCL defines sea transportation with freight loads that are wide enough to fill a 20 ‘to 40’ container. Like LCL — less than container load — where shipments share storage space with other items, FCL shipments use the complete storage. It ensures that the container is filled and secured at the plant and removed until it enters the target warehouse.
2. Advantages and disadvantages of FCL Shipping:
There are numerous benefits of shipping through FCL as these shipments are loaded and unloaded separately with no sharing so the transit time is less.
Advantages of shipping FCL:
a) Containers are sealed at the factory so there are less damage and less handling
b) FCL is cheaper than LCL for larger shipments with larger volume
c) If you are not looking for a faster way to ship then you can save big by sending shipment through FCL.
d) Ocean shipping is far cheaper than air freight.
Disadvantages of shipping FCL:
a) When you ship large quantities, then you will be paying for more inventory space, and for small loads, FCL will be more costly.
b) To deliver a full container, you will need the right equipment and employees that can handle the job if not so at least a good freight forwarder who can handle your FCL shipments well.
c) Delivery can be complicated with less time for the shipment.
d) Unloading can be stressful
3. How much does it Cost to ship a full container:
If you send FCL, you pay a flat rate for the whole box, irrespective of how much it holds. So if the shipping is big enough — usually about 13 CBM, depending on the products.
– it’s worth charging a flat rate as the cost per unit on LCL is much higher.
Here are some other factors that affect FCL pricing:
a) GRIs (General Rate Increases): There are price changes for containers that can be introduced by carriers at the beginning and middle of each month, usually in response to demand, PRO tip: If a freight forwarder billis you a GRI ask for advisory notice shared by Carrier inorder to ensure the genuinity of charges.
b) Peak season price surcharge: Peak season hits when businesses ship at higher volumes to make sure their supply is ready for the holiday shopping season. For FCL, peak season is typically between August-November.
c) Holiday delays: Shippers from China need to account for the Chinese New Year, usually in February, and Golden Week in fall, which are week-long holidays that impact demand and prices. Wherever your origin and destination, make sure to check the local calendar for important holidays.
4. Additional costs you must know in FCL shipping:
a) The requirement of custom bonds:
Whenever you ship to the USA, there is a need for a Customs bond so if you send shipments regularly then you should opt for an annual bond. In case you ship infrequently then you can consider a single-entry bond.
b) Taxes and duties:
Businesses should plan ahead of time about the customs duties and taxes if they don’t want to be caught off-guard about them. There have been many changes in the tariffs in the past years so you can get the estimate of your custom costs using the Import duty calculator available online.
c) Detention and Demurrage:
When your container arrives in the USA, it can wait on the port free of charge, but after that, you will be charged a fee known as demurrage until the container is picked up. These charges vary from country to country and can pile up quite quickly. So make sure to clear the customs and collect the container in time. The empty container also needs to be returned to the port within the given time frame.
d) Port Congestion Surcharge:
In case you are sending a shipment to a popular port then you may have to pay the congestion surcharge so decide your destination port carefully.
5. How to stay updated for FCL pricing:
FCL ocean freight has become more dynamic over the period of time, it is quite possible that from the date of getting an Purchase order confirmation to the date of shipping the cost of Ocean freight may change drastically, so it is always important to have the validity of the rates provided by your agent and also check for best rate available in market when you plan to ship the product. This possible now by having an google chrome extension which not only give you multiple freight quote options but also gives you a longer validity of rates or you can signup to get an call from our consultants for your next export from India.
6. FCL Shipment Procedure:
There are two types of FCL shipping procedure , one is Dock stuffing where Shippers Transporter collects cargo in its truck and hand over to the decided container freight station and the goods are being unloaded at the CFS, post all formalities the goods are stuffed in assigned container and handed over to carrier for loading into vessel, in such scenario chances of damage is high as there are multiple touch points to handle the goods of shipper also the shipper doesn’t have the personal access to its goods while loading, whereas in the second method, called factory stuffing the cargo is being loaded in the shippers factory or Place of loading and is sealed. To do so exporter should have necessary permissions to move the empty container from CFS and stuff and seal at its factory premise under the supervision of customs official.
7. Specification of FCL container:
8. How to ship a FCL on Boxnbiz.com:
If you choose to book your FCL shipment on Boxnbiz.com, we’ll take care of a lot of the confusing and time-consuming details. For example:
a) Because Boxnbiz is a Digital freight forwarder, you’ll be able to choose from a variety of quotes online in real time. That means you won’t need to play phone tag with freight forwarders, and you’ll get a picture of market rates at a glance.
b) You can order insurance and customs clearance for your shipment while you book your freight
c) You’ll be able to track your shipment right on the Boxnbiz.com platform.
d) You’ll get support for any questions that arise from your dedication account manager right from your virtual Business account.