Bulk shipping across international boundaries can be an arduous task if you don’t have the background knowledge necessary to find carriers that can meet your needs. Air and ocean shipping are particularly challenging, but even drayage to your ultimate destination requires a careful and professional team.
Freight brokers take the hassle out of searching for and negotiating with carriers. Whether you’re a small importer or a massive multinational company, a good freight broker can make an enormous impact on how much time you spend dealing with supply chain logistics.
Freight brokers work on shipping logistics full-time, which gives them insight into the current status of freight shipping rates and logistical concerns. Although a large freight forwarder may provide services worldwide, individual brokers working for them typically specialize in an area or specific route.
A freight broker knows at a glance whether a particular price is a good deal or if they can push for something lower. They understand a range of market variables and current events affecting fuel and transportation costs as well.
They also know the best and worst times of year to ship your goods, especially if you’re aiming to keep costs low. If you need to get your goods in before Christmas or another important holiday, your freight broker can advise you on your best options.
Besides knowing the market better, brokers have relationships with shipping companies. Shipping companies understand that freight brokers are a major potential source of business for them, and they aim to keep that relationship strong by giving good shipping rates.
Building these trusting partnerships takes time, and if you’re new to bulk shipping, you might not have time to determine which carriers are worthy of your time and trust. You can rely on your freight broker’s contacts to provide the best range of options possible.
Getting the best prices from transportation services requires a lot of legwork and usually requires a year-long contract. Your shipping needs may vary seasonally, so committing to a year-round contract can make your costs higher than they need to be.
International bulk shipping rates are usually cheapest via ocean freight at Full Container Load shipping rates. However, if you sometimes send less than a full load of goods at one time, you may find it beneficial to accept slightly higher Less than Container Load (LCL) rates. Your freight broker can help you decide how much to ship at one time and which rates to take advantage of.
Severe weather and other crises can interfere with your shipments, especially during typhoon and monsoon season. Determining your shipment’s status and new estimated arrival date is easier with a dedicated freight broker who can send you essential updates and address your concerns.
Your shipment may need to be rerouted in severe cases to avoid serious delays, especially if there are major backups at a port. An experienced freight broker can connect your shipment with another qualified carrier who can get it back on track. If there’s an issue with an individual drayage or trucking company, your freight broker can figure out a way to get a different company to take over the job.
Effective freight brokers can answer questions about shipping regulations imposed by international authorities, as well as domestic agencies such as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This is especially important if you ship heavy or hazardous materials that may be subject to special restrictions.
A Full Range of Services
The benefits of using a freight broker are vast, but brokers are most effective when they’re part of a large team that can handle any contingency. You need a freight brokerage team that finds solutions for you while providing the best customer service possible.
Asiana USA specializes in routes between Asia and North America and has robust relationships with shippers and carriers. Our knowledge of the shipping industry can help you save money with low bulk shipping rates that avoid hidden fees.
We also offer freight forwarding services, which are broader services that may be a better choice for meeting your all-around logistics needs. No matter what you ultimately decide, we’re here for whatever questions you have. Call us at 855-500-1808 to learn more about our bulk shipping brokerage and forwarding.