The benefits of consolidated shipping
In order to properly demonstrate the benefits of consolidated shipping, we will first go through its definition. Say that you have a certain number of items that are for shipping, but they do not have enough mass to fill a whole container. We call this ‘Less than container load‘, or LCL for short. Instead of shipping a bunch of half-loaded containers, a consolidator would combine those LCL shipments from various shippers into one full container shipment. Once that full container gets to its destination, the carriers separate the shipments into their original LCL shipments.
The money factor
Most shippers are usually able to fill only a half or two-thirds of a whole container but have to pay for the entire space. If you are one of those people, we are sure that this option doesn’t sound too appealing to you. Consolidated shipping, however, turns out to be quite the money saver. As we previously mentioned, the consolidator of your choice will combine LCL shipments headed to the same destination, and charge you only the space that your freight is taking up.
The damage factor
Freight shipping has come a long way. Having said that, certain damage to the goods is still a common issue. Reduced risk of damage is definitely one of the more significant benefits of consolidated shipping. The method by which it operates is not only cost-efficient but safer for your belongings. It is based on having fewer touchpoints. The freight will travel from shipper to consolidation center to receiver/consignee. This means less on-again, off-again handling of the product, resulting with reduced possibility of damage.
The quality control factor
Consolidated shipping comes with taking control of your good sooner. Say that the quality control notifies you that a problem with your shipment occurred, and the container with your belongings has already been shipped. In a normal situation, you would have to wait for the supplier to send a replacement. This means that you are no longer in charge of the delivery timeline. With consolidation, you can perform quality control measures the moment the product reaches the warehouse. It will significantly reduce the loss of time and control due to unsought issues with your order.
Benefits of consolidated shipping include multiple service options
- Service by air. This is the method by which freights from various shippers share space on an aircraft. Although being the priciest way of consolidation, it also utilizes the least amount of time. A fact worth mentioning is that cargo is very well organized. Each shipment has its own house waybill, whilst you can find all of them on the same master waybill.
- Service by the ocean. This is the preferred option when it comes to large goods. Containers of various size carry the ocean freight, including the LCL cargo. It comes cheaper than the air freight and is particularly convenient for international shipping.
- Service by ground. For such method, LCL is renamed into LTL, meaning ‘Less than a truckload’. Items that cannot fill a truck on their own will be consolidated in order to create a full truckload. The cheapest method out there comes with being most susceptible to delays.
What you need to know when it comes to consolidated shipping
Although there are many benefits of consolidated shipping, there are some troubles that can occur if you do not prepare correctly. Consolidation has a complexity to it and not many carriers are willing to perform it. Finding a good and reliable carrier can be a bit of a nuisance. When you do end up with the one that seems trustworthy, make sure that he is charging you correctly. Additionally, the complexity that we mentioned comes with a bit more time needed for the whole process. You need to take the added steps of consolidation and deconsolidation into consideration when planning such an endeavor. We also need to stress out the significance of organization and planning. You need to be aware of factors such as pricing, dimensions, and timing. Having proper knowledge of these will ensure that your goods get to the desired location safely and promptly.
The importance of proper packing
When it comes to packing, make sure to do so with the safety of your items in mind. Restrain from packing sharp and heavy object with fragile ones. Find quality packing material in a timely manner, so that you have enough time to approach this task calmly and collectively. Properly wrap what needs added protection and do not overfill your boxes. Making them too heavy will ensure that the unpacking is more difficult than it needs to be. It also puts adjacent boxes in danger of getting damaged. So, do not put all books that you own in a single largest box. Rather opt for smaller ones. When it comes to larger furniture such as couches, washing machines, and refrigerators, it would be wise to protect and cushion the edges with some soft material.
Do not forget to label your boxes
Clear writing should be seen on at least two sides of the package. You can name them by the rooms they belong to, or the nature of belongings they hold. Remember to make a list of all items, with regards to the box labeling system. That way you will know where each of your belongings resides. This will help immensely with the unpacking and provide you a peace of mind. Instead of worrying if you have forgotten a certain item, you can simply look up your list and be sure about packing it.