The container shipping industry is very dynamic in nature among all the industries that are present worldwide. This dynamic nature proves to be quite beneficial, but at the same time, it comes with its share of challenges. The transportation of cargo from one location to another is paramount to ensure the right working of the supply chain. As a result, there are certain challenges like extra shipping charges that importers-exporters face to transport cargo.
The shipping rates and charges have been through major changes and fluctuations through the decades. As the entire world is shifting towards online deliveries through e-commerce platforms, the demand for cargo shipments delivery is also increasing by many folds.
The most common reason for extra shipping charges placed on importers of cargo is the highly increased demand during the “peak season”. What is this peak season you may ask? Let us tell you that. The peak shipping season refers to the time between the months between mid-august and all the way till October. This is one of the busiest times of the year for cargo shipping companies. As the demand for cargo to be delivered in all parts of the world is much more than the supply, i.e. availability. During the peak season, the logistics industry faces a major hiccup. This famous hiccup is the high demand, which causes extra shipping charges during the peak season. Let us now discuss in detail some of the main reasons behind the shipment delays.
Causes of delayed shipments that result in extra shipping charges
1. Vessel Delays
Delays in the vessels can be due to factors like port congestion, strikes, shipping container shortages, or even unpredictable weather. The given factors can cause delays in the arrival or departure of a container ship. Thus, resulting in shipping delays.
2. Shortage of space
It happens many times that exporters want to ship their cargo shipments urgently. But can’t find a carrier because they are already busy with their schedules. This results in booking a carrier that still has space but it mostly sails at a later date. Thus, resulting in shipment delays.
3. Peak Season
The August-November season is the tightest as the demand for freight containers to carry the cargo is exponentially high. As a result, there are extra shipping charges levied on buying and selling of shipping containers to transport goods.
4. Customs Delays
Another common reason for delays in shipments can be the delay in getting a customs clearance at the shipping ports. The shippers have to complete this official formality like a bill of lading. Only after that, the shipment can leave the port for further travel.
Now after discussing in detail the various reasons behind the delay in shipments, let us move on to discussing some effective suggestions on how one can save extra on shipping charges and avoid delays in the packages that they are transporting from one location to another.
Tips on saving extra on shipping charges during the peak season
Ship early or late
If you have non-perishable items that you are shipping before the peak season, you must prefer to transport the cargo well before the hike of the season in order to save significantly in shipping charges. In other cases, exporters can also consider scheduling their cargoes after the highly demanded season for cargo containers is over. This also results in saving a great deal on any surplus charges you might have to pay otherwise.
Formulate a plan
During the peak season, festivals, and busy times, it is very much possible that the maritime shipping containers can get held up during the course of their journey to their final destinations. Shippers should devise a strategy in advance by buying shipping containers to be free of higher charges during the season.
Negotiate discounts beforehand
The shippers can successfully negotiate on shipping container prices to free themselves from extra charges during the peak season. Although it is not necessary that you will successfully receive a discount on pricing, it is surely worth a try. Always make sure that you receive a written document from your carrier regarding the negotiations and there are not any other conditions for the same.
Consolidate your packages
It is advantageous to amalgamate many different packages from different exporters into a single shipment. This term is often referred to as “Groupage Shipping”. Groupage shipping is a more convenient way to save on single shipments and even get all the delivery on time.
Staggered shipments are a very fitting strategy to transport cargo shipments during the peak season. If your cargo shipment does not include items that need instant delivery, it is a better option to pay for a small urgent portion first. And then wait for the rest of the bulk to arrive by a slower but inexpensive means of transportation.
Any delay in shipment is bad for business, no matter what the reason behind it is. It affects your business severely by resulting in unhappy customers, loss of cargo value, and also financial troubles like issues with the cash flow. The peak season surcharge incurs a brutal financial loss in business and delays in shipments, which result in a bad reputation.
We understand that not shipping at all during the peak season is not a good option for exporters. But by going through the above pointers you can take certain precautions while buying or selling shipping containers online in the USA or any other part of the world. BOXXPORT is an online container trading platform that can help you with your shipping container-related problems and also assist you in getting the best deal.