Shipping has been tough over the past few years. Prices have skyrocketed, transit times have tripled – and as a result, 93% of importers and exporters reported supply-chain difficulties in a recent Freightos.com survey.
We spoke with Charles Marrale of ExFreight and David Kadish of Primorus to get their advice on how to navigate shipping in the third year of the pandemic. Watch on:
Or if you prefer to read, here’s a quick summary:
Shipping Outlook in 2022
Before COVID-19 hit, if you booked a shipment from China to the US, you could count on receiving it within about a month. Now you need to allow 90 days and even then might not find the space you need. Charles Marrale advises flexibility.
The Importance of Flexibility in Supply Chain Management
No space on your lane? Try a different one
If your usual route is not getting your goods in on time, consider a different route.
For example, if you usually ship from China to the East Coast but there’s no capacity for six weeks, see if you can get space sooner if you send your goods from China to the West Coast. Once your goods arrive in the US, you can then send them by truck to your destination. Additionally, if you normally rely on rail and can’t get space, consider trucking instead.
Consider different shipping modes
If you normally ship FCL but can’t find capacity for a full container, try splitting your load into smaller shipments and sending by air and/or LCL. It may be easier to find space for smaller shipments rather than full containers.
No port space at your destination country? Try a different one
If you’re shipping to Europe, you might consider choosing a different destination country and then moving your goods inland. In Europe, this is a reasonable option since there is a common customs union.
It’s More Important than Ever to Plan Ahead
David Kadish reminds us of the basics that become even more crucial during these uncertain times:
- Make sure your goods are packed and ready before you book your shipment
- Be careful with your measurements so you don’t end up with costly extra fees
- Plan ahead as much as possible so last minute issues don’t catch you off guard
There’s no denying that shipping is more challenging than it used to be. Staying aware of the trends, planning ahead, and being flexible can help you manage.