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Shipping Your Goods by Sea vs. by Air

Posted on May 14, 2014, 04:01 PM, by Ana Ferrer under International Moving Services

When it comes to shipping your items for international move you have two options: shipping by air or shipping by sea. 

Air Freight is the quickest method and is usually reserved for your essential items like clothing and small shipments you'll need promptly when you arrive. 

To determine cost and shipping options visit the company's website for online quotes, rules and regulations. Be sure you've calculated the dimensions of your packages and the weight. Air shipment rates vary depending on the volume and weight and each company will have a different policies regarding shipments. 

Benefits of Air Freight

  • Speed: Clearly, air travel is one of the fastest ways to travel hence your items will arrive faster and in a more timely manner than any other method. 
  • Safety: Shipping on the ground provides opportunities for things to get lost or damaged along the way. when shipping your goods by ground, they'll most likely be transferred to different trucks and stored in a warehouse before it arrives at its destination. This won't happen with air freight. 
  • Less Damage: In addition to your packages being more secure when they're shipped by air, there's less handling of the packages overall. You or your movers pack up your items, they are placed in the air cargo area flown to their destination and then picked up or delivered to you. Less hands will mean less damage overall. 
  • Less Pit-Stops: There's a clear route from Point A to Point B when your items are shipped by air. Planes can't make pit stops mid-flight to make transfers of items and they won't have to travel from port to port to make deliveries along the way. 

Disadvantages of Air Freight

  • Cost: Just as if you were going to buy a plane ticket for a trip, you'll expect to pay more for a plane ticket than a train ticket or by driving yourself. Fuel costs, fees and service demands all lead to higher prices for air freight. 
  • Size Limits: Because your items are being shipped via plane, there are going to be weight restrictions and limited space. You may only be able to ship certain items because of those limits so you'll need to make sure that you plan accordingly. 

Ocean Freight

Ocean freight is a less expensive method of shipping your goods internationally, but there is a longer transit time. There are three methods of ocean freight shipping: 

  • Lift Vans: for small amounts of household goods, around one or two rooms of furniture. 
  • Exclusive Containers: a sealed steel container for larger shipments
  • Shared Containers: an economical option for shipments too small to fill an entire container, your items are consolidated with other shipments. 

Although it does offer a longer transit time than air freight, it is still a safe means of transporting your goods at a reasonable cost, which in turn makes it the preferred shipping method for many customers. 

Benefits of Ocean Freight

  • Cost: Compared to air freight, ocean freight services often don't cost much. By opting for ocean freight shipping, you can save money making it more feasible to stay within your moving budget. Depending on which option you choose and how much you'll actually be shipping, ocean freight is generally the preferred method of shipping internationally. 
  • More Time: Because ocean freight offers longer transit time, you have more time to prepare your new home for the delivery of your items. However, ocean freight services aren't what they used to be, with technology constantly evolving, the travel times are decreasing. 
  • Ideal for Heavy Items: If you're going to be moving an entire house worth of items, ocean freight is going to be your best option because of their size they are able to carry larger quantities of items. 
  • Environmentally Friendly: While this may not be at the top of your list when choosing a shipping method the fact still stands that ocean freight is the more eco-friendly option. 

Disadvantages of Ocean Freight

  • Time: One of the biggest disadvantages to using ocean freight is the time it takes to receive your items. The speed of ocean shipping pales in comparison to the convenience of overnight air freight, but as stated previously, with technology advancing constantly, time gaps are shrinking. 
  • Safety: Ocean freighters are constantly under threat of being attacked and boarded by pirates. The pirates generally steal the cargo ships' contents, which often include products that companies are waiting for and may also include your personal items. The danger of crew members and passengers (if any) is always something to consider when choosing your shipping method.

Contact International Sea & Air Shipping for more information about  preparing and planning for your upcoming international move.  

Comments (1)

Comments (1) -

Ivan
Ivan
8/8/2014 8:46:18 AM #

Why is the fact that ocean freight is more environmentally friendly a DISADVANTAGE?? Also, do you have any numbers to back up the assessed cost savings?

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