Sea, Air, Roadfreight, Ex UK Information
Welcome. For the experienced Export Operator, you will most likely know all the normal, logical and important information relating to export freight shipping to EEC and Non-EEC countries worldwide. However, as most companies freighting cargo from UK use the services of a reliable Freight Forwarder, we hope that some of the below information may still be useful to you, exporting your freight from UK and will certainly be of help to those new to the responsibilities of Export Freight Shipping Logistics planning.
Freight Forwarding Services we can offer
Freight Forwarding is a service industry that involves the moving of goods around the world. Freight forwarders oversee the national and international movement of manufactured and personal goods, packing requirements, documentation for different countries and customs clearance, on behalf of exporters and importers.
What is Freight Forwarding?
Freight Forwarders are a bit like travel agents, in that instead of knowing all the best airlines, beach resorts, hotels and cruise lines for holidays, your Freight Forwarder will know all the best UK Sea Freight, Road Freight & Air Cargo carriers, from the hundreds who offer freight shipping services to and from UK to any destination worldwide. Subject to your cargo shipment volumes and your delivery deadlines, your Freight Forwarders will be best placed to find the best freight shipping options from UK, for you to meet your commitment deadlines. The Freight Forwarder does not own the Ocean vessels or the aircraft, his role is to select the most suitable carriers for his clients freighting needs.
It’s not our aim to train you to become a Freight Forwarder. These information notes about freighting from UK are designed just to give you enough extra knowledge and peace of mind that your goods are properly prepared by you, or you’re Export Packing Services Company for global freight shipping from UK. Also, whatever is required by your buyer to import goods into his country of destination has been fully considered and arranged in advance of the freight shipping from UK.
When you make a sale to a company outside the UK, the buyer likes your goods and also likes your price for your goods ex your warehouse. This is your Ex works price and normally this includes your product costs/sales price and the costs for suitable packing your goods for export. At the end of the day it’s the person who buys goods responsibility to arrange and pay for the freight shipping from UK to their destination country and to confirm to the seller what documents they need to import into their country. However, it may help you make that extra sale, if you offer a freight quote for Sea or Air Freight Shipping from UK to USA or to whichever country of the buyer. Alternatively the buyer may appreciate the seller recommending a reliable UK Freight Forwarding company like EON Logistics for a freight quote, just in case they don’t already have their own UK Freight forwarder contacts, to arrange the freight shipping from UK. With the freight shipping costs added onto your ex works costs, this becomes your CFR or C & F price – Costs and Freight to arrival destination sea or air port. Then by adding the costs for International Cargo Insurance cover, this would become your CIF price.
Packing your Goods Suitably for Export
Exporters should be aware of the risks that international freight shipping from UK puts onto packaged goods. Basically when deciding what is suitable for the export packing of your products, you must consider if your timber shipping crate accommodates: possible breakage, moisture damage, pilferage, the weight of your goods and other packages being stowed on top of your export crate. It’s logical that you should best know, how to pack and protect your products safely, taking into consideration the multiple handling they may endure from your warehouse, freight shipping from UK to your buyer’s overseas warehouse. Less costly packing/protection maybe considered suitable if freight shipping as a FCL – full container load, when loaded by the shipper and offloaded by the buyers at destination. However, when LCL shipping, road freight or air cargo freighting, we would always recommend fuller/more suitable export case packing, to cope with the multiple handling the packages will receive during the export freight movement. We would recommend that you should ensure that the costs of packing are included within your Ex. works pro-forma quotation for your goods. In the unusual event that your goods become damaged during the freight shipping from UK to your overseas buyers, due to poor or insufficient packing, then the Cargo Insurers, Ocean freight or Air Carriers may refuse to settle any claims. Also your buyers may try to make a claim against you for any damage, if you have not safely packed your goods. If unsure how best to pack your goods suitably for freight shipping from UK, then your Freight Forwarder will be able to help or recommend an Export Packing Services company to visit to inspect your products, to determine with you, suitable packing for the safe transport handling they should endure whilst shipping globally.
Heat Treated Timber or ISPM 15Timber
As most overseas countries now operate strict regulations to prevent the transfer of fungi or insect infestation damaging their countries plants and trees, you must ensure that any Timber Packing Cases, Pallets or Timber packing materials used to protect your goods, are compliant with the wood packaging requirements for the country you are exporting to. Your Timber Case or Pallet suppliers will know exactly what is appropriate for each country and they will ensure that the correct Heat Treated Timber and ISPM 15 Timber is used. They will also properly stamp all packages with the correct markings evidencing the type of Timber Treatment. Failure to have these stamps on all Timber Packing Cases can result in the cargo being refused import into the destination country, possibly freighted back to UK or even destroyed. All and any resulting extra costs or fines incurred would be for the account of the supplier, as it is the supplier’s responsibility to ensure correct packing materials are used.
Freight Shipping Costs to EEC Destinations
For any UK Export Sales you make to buyers in EEC countries, 99 % will move by Road Freight from UK and it’s quite normal for the freight quote to be from UK door to door in EEC Country. It’s unlikely the road freight quote from UK will change much over say a 2 month period, the exception being if the freight quoted requirements of the road movement changes. Eg: the buyers delivery warehouse requires extra services that were not included in the original freight quote, typically –timed delivery, delivery out of normal working hours or weekends, tail-lift delivery service, driver requested to carry into the buyers premises, disposal of packing materials, delivery vehicle turns up with cargo and buyer decides he cannot take delivery that day and a wasted transport is incurred. Etc. These are all extra freight costs and would need to be specifically requested to be included in the original freight shipping quote from UK. otherwise extra freight costs will be charged once delivery completed. UK VAT is charged to UK customers on top of the road freight costs quoted to EEC member Country destinations and VAT is allowed to be zero rated on costs for Freight shipping from UK to Non-EEC Countries.
Freight Shipping from UK to Non-EEC Destinations
When selling to buyers outside the EEC member countries, there are many important requirements that sellers and buyers must be aware of and comply with. In particular the seller can zero rate and not charge VAT, providing they receive proof of the freight shipping from UK and EEC acceptable by HMRC. If the exporter is arranging the freight shipping from UK via his own preferred freight forwarder, then he will be guaranteed to receive the required evidence of freighting from UK that HMRC requires. However, if the buyers are buying ex-works and arranging the freight shipping from UK via the buyers preferred freight agents, then the shipper may be reluctant to VAT zero rate the sales invoice, as the shipper would have no guarantee that the goods will be freighted from UK and EEC. There is a UK customs process requirement when freighting from UK and EEC, as well as an import customs requirement in to the destination country. Your Freight Forwarders will confirm these requirements when quoting costs for freight shipping from UK to USA or whichever country you are selling to. You should note that it is you, the seller/shippers responsibility to comply with UK HMRC exporting requirements and record keeping, which your UK freight forwarder can advise you about. Furthermore, it is your buyer’s responsibility to advise you on what documents they require from you to import your goods into their country. Your buyer or his local customs freight forwarding agents are responsible to check with their countries local customs, that they can import your products and to inform you on whatever documentation they require from you. It is not your responsibility to guess what if any, extra documents they may require. It is very easy for EON Logistics or any UK Freight Forwarder to offer you a fixed cost Freight Shipping quote from UK to any international seaport or airport. This will normally exclude all the local destination import costs, which the buyers would pay to their local import Customs Clearing Agents. If your buyers ask you for freight quote UK to there destination door, we can arrange this to most countries, through our local freight agent/partners. However, the destination charges can be subject change due to differing local circumstances, which cannot be pre-quoted and as some charges may, or may not be incurred (Customs examinations, security inspections, storage and demurrage), it is therefore logical that the buyers should pay them at destination, when the cargo arrives. At the end of the day, the buyer is paying these charges, either to their destination import Customs Clearing Agent, or to you , the shipper, if he asks you to prepay them. The buyer is best placed to negotiate and pay for the destination import costs locally.
Sea Freight Shipping UK
Once you have decided to use Sea Freight Shipping services UK to USA or whichever international destination you need to freight your cargo to, you then need to decide the most appropriate type of Sea Freight Shipping service to suit your packed order volume and weight. Below are the main UK sea freight service types, which your UK Freight Forwarder can offer you, together with explanation of each:
- FCL Freight Shipping – Full Container Load – used when you have a large export freight shipment to one overseas customer, say over 20cbm of packed cargo. FCL shipping is used where costs are higher as LCL freight shipping by sea freight from UK to destination, than the equivalent freight shipping costs as a sole 20’ FCL container. FCL cargo shipments sometimes require less product packing, as loaded by shippers own staff, to one overseas buyer, who’s staff would normally offload the container at their warehouse. A FCL full container load is a standard ISO container, usually 20’ 40’ and 45’ for International Ocean Freight Shipping, which proportionately should afford the buyers significant sea freight cost savings, against the LCL freight shipping costs of shipping a large order by LCL sea freight.
- LCL Freight Shipping – Less than container load – When your cargo is only part of a container, used for smaller sea freight shipping orders. Used when sea freight costs from UK are less as LCL shipping from UK, than it may cost if you paid for a FCL full container load. LCL shipping means your cargo is mixed with lots of other shipper’s freight to USA or whichever destination port, where each shipper pays for part of the sea freight costs of the whole FCL. When using LCL shipping, you will need to ensure that your cargo is sufficiently export packed, as cargo will need to mix with other shippers cargos, loaded to the same sea freight shipping container.
- Ro-Ro Sea Freight Shipping Services UK – Used when you have to ship wheeled vehicles, tracked plant or machinery, or even Out of gauge freight/cargos to ship, which are not suitable for FCL sea freight shipping. Then Ro-Ro (roll on and roll off vessels, like large car ferries) can be used. These vessels do not just carry wheeled vehicles; they can also be suitable for project or out of gauge cargo shipping, when cargo is too big for FCL container vessels, OOG cargos are normally carried aboard the Ro-Ro vessels as Static cargo, under deck.
- Conventional/Break-bulk Sea Freight Shipping – When the Project and Out-of-Gauge cargo is too big for Ocean container vessels or as static cargo on Ro-Ro carrier vessels, then conventional/break-bulk cargo vessels, which have very large conventional cargo holds, can be considered. These vessels are as near to the old fashioned sailing vessel you will get, although today’s bulk cargo carriers are very modern, some with sophisticated handling or heavy lift self loading and offloading cranes.
For fuller details on our Out of Gauge Cargo Shipping and Project Cargo services, CLICK.
Air Freight Shipping UK
When your export order is time sensitive, or you don’t have the luxury of lots of free time to Sea Freight cargo from UK using a cheap Sea Freight Shipping service, then you will need to utilise the more expensive Air Freight shipping option. As mentioned earlier, as there is a Customs procedure when freighting from UK or EEC to a non EEC country, you need to ensure you supply all the correct documentation, before flying your cargo. Your overseas buyer is responsible to advise you of any special export documents other than your Export Commercial Invoice and Packing Lists, which they will need from you. As Air Freight shipping services are a much quicker process, the airline sheds charge very high and punitive storage charges if cargo is not Customs Cleared quickly, therefore it is very important that all the correct documents travels with the air freight UK to your buyer at destination. Your UK freight forwarder will offer you a choice of Economy air freight or Express Air Freight Shipping Services UK to USA or whichever destination. Your Freight Forwarder will take into consideration how quickly you need your cargo at destination, also from advice from their destination Customs Brokers, on how long the import Customs process should take and then supply you with air freight shipping quotes to suit your requirements. Cheap air freight services are available for larger orders, when the airlines have extra space on flights and are prepared to offer cheap air freight spot-rates. However, if there is any time sensitivity for your cargo to arrive at destination, then it is wise to budget for a more costly Priority Air Freight service or Must Ride Air Freight shipping , as the cheaper air freight spot rates service, does not guarantee that your cargo will fly on the booked flights. For example if the flights become overbooked with passenger’s baggage, then the airline gives the Priority Air Cargo, paying higher air freight rates, priority over the spot rated cheap air freight cargo. If not enough cargo space the cheaper rated air freight cargo may be bumped off the flight, to fly on a future flight.
Due to stricter air security measures adopted post 9/11 by all air freight carriers, most air cargo goes through X-ray security, before it is allowed to fly. In the event that the cargo is too big, too dense or security cannot be confirmed by X-raying, then some airlines will move your air cargo to be secured using RASCO or DECOM. Should this happen, then additional air security costs will be charged to the party paying the air freight shipping charges This is not something that the UK Freight Forwarder will have already included in their air freight quote and will need to be collected as an extra charge, as it is only occasionally incurred, when the booked air cargo is found to be unsuitable for X-raying.
When using air freight shipping services to USA or whichever destination, the declared buyer or consignee on the airway bill will be contacted when the cargo arrives at destination airport, by the airline or agent. The air freight cargo and travelling documents will be released to your consignee on the airway bill and they will receive the goods once the local Customs Clearance process has been completed. It is very important that you have received your payment in advance of flying or the buyers/consignee has agreed credit terms with you. If you require payment before you wish the buyer to receive the cargo, then you should not book your cargo to fly, as once flown the consignee will receive the cargo. You should note that airport storage costs around the world are very expensive and at some airports the storage starts after only one or two days of flight arrival. If you must have payment for your goods in advance of consignee receiving the goods, it is not advisable to fly your goods with the promise of payment hitting your bank account soon. Alternatively your buyers can pay you using a Irrevocable Letter of Credit.
Export Shipment Consolidation Multiple UK Suppliers
If you are buying from multiple UK suppliers, EON Logistics buyer consolidation services can help you to considerably reduce your total shipping costs freighting from UK. At the end of the day, whoever buys products is responsible to pay all the associated documentation, customs and freight shipping costs, to their destination warehouse. Why waste your money and management time, communicating with lots of UK suppliers who ship your small orders individually. Using our consolidation services from UK means we contact all your different suppliers, arrange each individual UK collection, bring each back to our warehouse, check correct goods received as per each order, re-pack (if required) suitably for International Freighting, then consolidate the orders together in preparation for export freighting from UK to Australia or whichever destination, via Air Consolidation or Ocean Freight Shipping Services, as one larger single shipment. We keep you fully updated with regular email status reports on each order availability dates, arrival at our warehouse and readiness to freight from UK to Australia or whichever destination. Consolidating and freight shipping from multiple UK suppliers, definitely affords the overseas buyers’ significant freight cost savings, compared with freighting from UK as individual supplier orders. Together with this, buyers can expect considerable UK and destination multiple ancillary and customs cost savings will be achieved. Not forgetting the significant savings in management time for the buyers, to use more profitably sourcing more UK supplier’s products to sell in your country. EON Logistics Trading and Procurement services, can assist overseas buyers with product sourcing and also give advise on VAT Zero rating of products purchased for exporting overseas from the UK and EEC.
UK VAT Charges
Currently Road Freight Transport and ancillary costs delivering cargo to UK and EEC member countries are subject to VAT at standard UK VAT rates, currently 20% March 2013. Ocean Freight Shipping Services, Air Freight Shipping and Road Freight Transport costs to countries outside the EEC member states are normally Zero rated of UK VAT. Most UK Export suppliers can usually sell their goods free of UK VAT, providing the goods are being immediately shipped to countries outside the EEC and they receive proof of export from the UK, in the form of: Ocean Bill of Lading, Airway bill, CMR/Certificate of Shipment, or Export Customs Entry, from the carrier or Freight Forwarder.
International Cargo Insurance Services
Unless you specifically ask the UK Freight Forwarder, Ocean Carrier or Air Cargo Agent to quote for International Cargo Insurance cover, it is normal that most Freight Shipping quotes will not include any International Cargo Insurance cover, for the replacement value of your goods. We recommend that you or your buyers take out Cargo Insurance cover for the value of your goods, plus all the freight shipping cost’s to destination and an extra 10%.(It’s normal to Insure for the CIF +10% value). Most UK Freight Forwarding agents may be able to quote International Cargo Insurance or they can recommend a reliable Insurance Broker to quote you for your Cargo Insurance needs. It is very important to note that the Freight Forwarders liability cover, (under their terms and conditions), nor the liability cover of the Road Transport Company, the Air Freight Shipping and Ocean Carriers, carrying your goods, should not be considered by you or your buyers as International Cargo Insurance cover. It is not. Insurance companies and carriers will not accept any claims for damage to goods that have been insufficiently packed and protected. See our note on Packing Goods Suitably for Export. Claims for damage, loss or pilferage, must be properly handled and documented, otherwise insurers and carriers may repudiate liability. It’s very important to inform your buyers how best to handle any claims: They should notify you same day as receiving your shipment or next working day of any claim for damage, losses or pilferage to packages – they must clause the delivery drivers notes of what is missing or damaged – they must send you a copy of this delivery note – you should send same to your Freight Forwarders and your cargo insurers, the same day or next working day you receive claim notification.
Any questions on above or for a freight shipping quote call 0208 311 1667 or 01268 608801 or contact us