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How to Find a Freight Forwarder in China: Freight Shipping, Amazon FBA, and More

Finding the best freight forwarding company in China is important. Find out here how to find and choose the best freight forwarder in China for your needs.

Exporting from China? You’ll need to find the right freight forwarder.

With so many service providers out there, how do you find the right one for your shipping requirements? Read on to find out.

Highlights

  • If you’re exporting from China, your forwarder doesn’t need to be based in China, but they do need experience shipping on your lane.
  • Choose a forwarder with the expertise you need – you know your business best.
  • Make sure to compare quotes – and know what services are offered in the quote.

How to choose a freight forwarder in China

Here’s the first thing to know: you don’t necessarily need to choose a Chinese freight forwarder to manage your exports from China. Instead, choose a forwarder with expertise shipping from China, specifically on the lanes you need.

That’s because experienced freight forwarders will often work with agents or partner forwarders in China to handle your shipment on the ground, before it leaves the port.

So, aside from expertise on your lanes, what should you look for in a provider to handle your China shipments? Here are some factors to consider:

Scope of services

What services does the freight forwarder provide? While some forwarders handle the full supply chain, including pick-up, transfers, packaging, warehousing, customs brokerage, and door-to-door deliveries, others have more limited services.

To choose a provider that works for you, consider the type of goods you ship and your particular shipping needs. Then choose a forwarder who can fulfill these needs.

Scale of operations

Are you a large business? Go with a forwarder that has the infrastructure, workforce, and technology to handle your shipment. If you run a smaller business, you might benefit from a more hands-on service. And if you’re looking to grow, you’ll need a provider capable of scaling your operations.

Managing a few shipments each month is very different from shipping thousands of containers a year – and everything in between.

Choose a freight forwarder that meets your business needs.

Industry expertise

Look for a freight forwarder with both the experience and specialization you need. For example:

  • Does this freight forwarder specialize in your industry?
  • How long have they been in business?
  • What kind of goods do they generally handle?
  • Which shipping lanes are they familiar with?

A freight forwarder experienced in your goods, industry, and shipping routes will help you anticipate charges and issues that may arise – and help you avoid them whenever possible.

Networks and connections

Freight forwarders don’t work alone. Every successful shipment requires coordination with multiple providers, including trucking companies, carriers, customs agents, and brokers.

A forwarder with an extensive logistics network can provide service options customized to your shipping needs, offer a greater range of value-added services, and even leverage their connections in emergencies.

Understand all the services the forwarder you’re considering offers – and if they have the partnerships to get you all the services you need.

Registrations and licenses 

When selecting a freight forwarder for shipping from China, check their compliance with all required registrations, licenses, and certifications for operating in the country.

Reputation

You are choosing a forwarder, always take the time to read reviews from past customers to get a better sense of how the business operates. Look for on-time shipments, dedicated customer support, transparency, risk management capabilities, and outstanding past service records.

Looking for forwarders for your China export?

How to choose a freight forwarder in China for Amazon FBA

Amazon has strict requirements for labeling, packaging, delivery, and storage. Failing to meet these guidelines can result in delays or even rejected shipments.

If you’re shipping FBA (fulfillment by Amazon), choose a freight forwarder with experience handling Amazon shipments.

It’s easy to find FBA-experienced forwarders on Freightos.com . Just select an FBA fulfillment center as your door-to-door destination and you’ll be on track with all Amazon requirements from the start.

Below you can see how to select an Amazon fulfillment center on the Freightos.com platform:

Not sure what your Amazon destination warehouse code is? You’ll receive it once you complete your Amazon Plan on Amazon Seller Central.

Best freight forwarders for shipping from China

The best forwarder for shipping your goods from China will depend on your business needs. Finding a freight forwarder with experience in your industry and on your lane should be your top priority.

Here are some freight forwarders on the Freightos.com platform with a ton of experience – and good reviews! – exporting from China:

Seabay

Seabay is one of the top 50 international freight forwarders in Southern China, and the logistics provider and partner of Alibaba, providing services to thousands of Alibaba exporters and buyers. Their main priorities are safety and simplicity.

Number of Shipments on Freightos.com: 1000+

Reviews on Freightos.com: 1,451

Average rating: 4.5 stars

Excellent transport service, monitoring at each stage of the shipment from origin to destination.
Shipment from China-Mexico, January 2023

C.H. Robinson

Founded in 1905, C.H. Robinson is the largest freight broker in the United States. C.H. Robinson delivers a full suite of international transportation services via a global network of over 200 offices in 39 countries.

Number of Shipments on Freightos.com: 1000+

Reviews on Freightos.com: 603

Average rating: 4 stars

What a wonderful experience working with C.H. Robinson! They are highly communicative, stick to their deadlines, adjust when absolutely necessary, and are very organized – this all leads to a seamless and positive experience that one can count on. Now having worked with two of their competitors, CH Robinson is the one to go with.

Shipment from China-Baltimore, December 2022

Aver Logistics

With trusted agents in all major countries, Aver Logistics’ unique relationships, emphasis on quality control, and commitment to finding the right service from all major carriers will enable you to benefit from the experience of a global operation.

Number of Shipments on Freightos.com: 1000+

Reviews on Freightos.com: 352

Average rating: 4.5 stars

Aver Logistics was prompt in communication and delivered the goods safely and on schedule. Highly recommended!

Shipment from China-UK, October 2022

Freight Right

Freight Right was founded in 2007. It is insured, bonded, and licensed by Federal Maritime Commission, Transport Security Administration, Department of Transportation. Member of Amazon Service Provider Network. They are one of the most experienced teams in the industry (Handling Amazon since 2016).

Number of Shipments on Freightos.com: 1000+

Reviews on Freightos.com: 593

Average rating: 4.5 stars

Great comms, time estimates were all correct, what else could you want?

Shipment from China-California, November 2022

Unicargo

Unicargo specializes in creating smart, tailor-made, cost-effective freight solutions for businesses of all sizes, all over the world. They aim to deliver a service that allows you to focus on your core business and sleep soundly, knowing that your goods are cared for and will be delivered on time.

Number of Shipments on Freightos.com: 1000+

Reviews on Freightos.com: 215

Average rating: 5 stars

Thank you to Adam and the UNICARGO team for the great service on this shipment! The team was responsive and helpful on my questions leading up to the shipment and handled it dutifully during transit. I look forward to my next UNICARGO shipment.

Shipment from Hong Kong-Houston, January 2023

READ MORE: Top Freight Forwarders in 2023

How to book a freight forwarder for China

One way to book a freight forwarder for your China export is to gather recommended freight forwarders in China, contact them to request a quote, and then compare the quotes you receive manually. Be aware this process typically takes a few weeks.

To save time and effort, use the Freightos.com marketplace to compare vetted forwarders on your China-US lane instantly.

It’s easy:

  • Step 1: Head over to Freightos.com shipment portal.
  • Step 2: Enter the origin and destination (factory, warehouse, port, etc.). You can select an Amazon FBA fulfillment center as the destination.
  • Step 3: Fill in the shipment details (such as FCL or LCL, number of pallets or boxes, dimensions, units, etc.).
  • Step 4: Describe the type of goods you want to ship, value of the goods, if the goods are ready, and if you’re shipping hazardous cargo.
  • Step 5: Select any additional services you require, such as customs brokerage, liftgates, bonds, or insurance (We’ve got it all covered for you!)

The Freightos.com platform will automatically provide live quotes from freight forwarders  that meet  your shipping needs.

Ready to ship?

READ MORE: Calculate Air and Sea Shipping Costs

Must-knows for hiring a freight forwarder for China

  • Check the services included in the quote the forwarder provides. Don’t be tempted by price quotes that look very low without thorough investigation. If the price is particularly low, the quote might not all include all the fees you’ll need to pay later in the process.
  • When you’re booking a forwarder for a shipment from China, don’t think you have to work with local forwarders – multinational forwarders will usually provide the accountability, structure, and risk-handling capabilities you need.
  • If your business is expanding rapidly, using a freight marketplace such as Freightos.com can help you get service in all the locations you need.

Ready to start comparing rates instantly across multiple forwarders?

Get a demo of Freightos.com’s Enterprise Shipper capabilities

Freightos.com helps you spend less time and money on each shipment, reducing spend with better:

  • Improved selection across price, mode, vendor, performance metrics on each shipment
  • Reduced management time with on-demand documentat management and tracking
  • Real-time service through automated services, real-time chat, and integrated messaging options
  • Powerful payment options, including credit, batch processing, reconcilations and more.

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