Requirements for International Shipping

Requirements for International Shipping

As an international exporter, you need to know the regulations that you have to follow before shipping. It does not matter whether the shipment is packed in multiple containers or is just one package. The regulations are the same and you will have to comply with them before you ship them.


Since the laws are quite sophisticated, it is best to use the services of freight forwarders like A1AutoTransport so that there is no problem with the documentation. But apart from the documentation, you will also need to follow other requirements as given below –


  1. Use Freight Forwarders – It is best to hire the services of freight forwarders. Choose a company that has a license from International Air Transport Association for handling air freight. For ocean freight, the company must have a license from Federal Maritime Commission.

Freight forwarders are well-versed with the complicated laws and export rules of US and other countries. They will inform you about the shipping costs, how to pack the shipment, about the insurance and documentation. In addition, the company will also ensure take care of boarding the shipment, Customs clearance, and payment of tariff and the necessary fees for the release of goods on reaching the destination.

  1. Packing – Cargo is packed in containers that are about 20 feet high. But some freight forwarders still carry cargo in small crates or boxes loaded using a sling or a net. On reaching the destination, the cargo is unloaded and it waits for customs inspections.

If the packing is not done properly, then there is chance of damage to the cargo on the way. Therefore, the freight forwarding company should package it properly. The following are the reasons why cargo is damaged during export trade –

a)    Theft;

b)    Breakage;

c)     Condensation; and

d)    Excess weight.

A reputed freight forwarder will ensure that the packaging is done properly and will also take care of the insurance. If he does not provide insurance, then will advise you about it and tell you where you can get it.

  1. Labeling – After packing, the cargo is given labels in accordance with the international regulations. The following requirements should be kept in mind when labeling –

a)     The cargo label should, in no way, advertise the contents. But, at the same time, the receiver should be able to identify that the packet belongs to him. Therefore, labeling should be done properly.

b)    The labeling should comply with the environmental and safety regulations of destination country.

c)     The markings on the label should include the name of the originating country, weight, total packages in the cargo and precautions to be taken. The language on the labels should be of the originating and destination country both.

  1. Documentation – Documentation is one of the most important aspects of shipping as it can either ease or complicate the entire process. Bills for Air freight are not negotiable but Bill of lading or ocean freight bills are negotiable.

Apart from these, documents include export declaration of the shipper, seller to buyer invoice, consular invoice that contains information about the goods’ value, the shipper and the receiver. There should be a certificate showing the originating country of cargo.

  1. Tariffs, Insurance and Shipping – The freight forwarder will ship cargo with bill of lading when shipment is via ocean. In US, the contract is with either UPS or FedEx. These firms also offer air freight insurance. For ocean freight, insurance is covered under marine cargo.

Tariff varies from country to country and some countries have special fees.

As an exporter, it is important that you should follow all these regulations so that the cargo reaches its destination without any trouble. The website will provide you with more information.


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