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Importing and exporting are key parts to the global economy as well as to any business’ supply chain. The process itself depends on a number of global shippers and movers to coordinate the movement of large volumes of shipments via air, ocean, land, rail. A worldwide operation, this process needs to operate like clockwork to be efficient.

Relying on individuals to accurately and properly complete paperwork and pay correct duty and customs would not result in an efficient shipping system. Instead, shippers work with freight forwarders to optimize the transportation of goods, documentation requirements, and commercial invoices.

What is a Freight Forwarder?

A freight forwarder is a firm that helps clients find effective ways to import, export, and transport cargo from origin to destination. While they may not be the ones to actually move your cargo, freight forwarders typically deal with all tracking, documentation, warehousing, and consolidation of international logistics. Simply put, a freight forwarding company will advise a client on the best way to ship goods and help them carry out that plan.

Many companies may be freight forwarders and perform a number of other services as well. Asiana USA is one of those, offering full-service transportation solutions for clients of all sizes.

What Do Freight Forwarding Companies Do?

Freight forwarders act as agents between the shipper and different modes of transport via air, ocean, rail, and land. As experts in transportation services, they can often provide options unavailable to most people working individually.

A freight forwarding service uses already established relationships with carriers to put together the more efficient travel route for your cargo. Options may include different economical options depending on the shipper’s preference of speed, cost, and reliability. Since freight forwarders work with a large number of shippers and carriers, there will often be multiple choices for moving goods, including air freight, ocean shipping, trucking companies, and trains.

Freight forwarders also deal with a large amount of logistics coordination, especially when dealing with international shipping. These companies will prepare bills of lading, valuation paperwork, and customs duty on behalf of the client.

Why Should I Use a Freight Forwarder??

It is extremely important and beneficial to have someone familiar with these processes handling your shipping logistics for you. This can prevent delays, extra fees, and breaks in your supply chain. While smaller companies with smaller supply chains may be able to manage shipments on their own, freight forwarders can greatly streamline the process, as well as save the company time and money.

Freight forwarders can offer door to door solutions for your cargo, taking a considerable amount of work and logistics off your plate, including paperwork, customs, storage, and more. Such companies can offer competitive rates and the ability to deal with unexpected issues or surprises. This may be more than a company’s in-house team can handle, especially when working with foreign ports.

Lastly, your freight forwarder is the customer service representative for your shipping needs. They can predict your needs, offer solutions before there are problems, and handle the bulk of the logistics for you while providing you accurate feedback and tracking.

Final Thoughts

Working with a freight forwarder can save you headaches, time, and money in the long run, and allow you to optimize your supply chain without having to deal with the specifics of shipping. Freight forwarders make efficient logistics their business and offer solutions to optimize your business. Call Asiana USA at (323)-250-9407 to see how we can facilitate your daily shipping, warehousing, and customs needs.

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