Freight services are used when goods need to be shipped regularly or even just once between companies or between individuals and companies. Be sure to look at all the services offered such as insurance and whether or not the company operates 24-7, nationally or internationally. We have three simple steps for you to find the right shipping service: 1. post your request; 2. get quotes; 3. choose the right freight company to suit your needs. Use our form below for a fast, free and easy way to obtain quotes!
To begin the consignment process, companies will load a container(s) or a pallet(s) with their goods, transport it to a hub where all items are collected, sorted, and packed into a container or consolidated onto a cargo vessel, airplane, truck, or rail car and shipped to its destination where they are unpacked and distributed. The shipper must be certain to create a manifest, or list of items being transported. Another essential document is the bill of lading (also known as the air waybill). This formal contract is not a document of title to the goods, rather, it specifies who the consignor and consignee is, as well as all the charges involved. One of the freight services a company might offer is Collect on Delivery (COD). This allows the receiver to pay the carrier for the goods once the shipment arrives. The carrier then forwards the payment on to the consignor. Freight carriers usually charge an extra fee for this.
Your shipping company should be able to offer up-to-the-minute freight services such as tracking and tracing consignments. Companies now use freight forwarding software to electronically track your goods from departure to arrival, providing you with peace of mind and added security. This is one element of an electronic data interchange (EDI). Computer systems can also generate your bill of lading and Shipper's Export Declarations (SEDs). New Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) from the European Commission use technology to create new freight services for all transit modes. For example, there's RIS (River Information Services) for inland waterways, VTMIS (Vessel Traffic Monitoring and Information Services) for ocean freight, SESAR (Single European Sky ATM Research) for air traffic control and ERTMS (European Rail Traffic Management System) for the rail transit industry.
If you decide to use a freight forwarder, you will find that they often provide more freight services than a traditional air freight or truck freight company does. This is because your freight forwarder will act as an agent and guide you throughout the entire shipping process. He or she will coordinate each method of transit required and handle all the documentation needed. They will also package, label and/or store goods if necessary. Forwarders act as third-party logistics providers or indirect carriers.
There are many associations dedicated to providing information and guidance to the freight services industry. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) represents over 200 airlines and sets global standards for safety procedures, environmental regulations and financial systems. Additionally, the British International Freight Association (BIFA) offers information, training and support to the UK international freight industry, as does the Federation of Asia-Pacific Aircargo Associations (FAPAA) in 16 different countries in that region.