International container shipping is a complex process and it can be difficult for novices to find the right container freight rate. While reputable container freight companies can help you with this, some container shipping companies may take advantage of your lack of experience and overcharge you or give you poor service for your money. Here are some things to look for when you are calculating your container freight rate for household goods.
A container shipping calculator can help you when you are working out your container freight rate. However, the online calculators for laymen are often only good for getting container shipping estimates, not firm container shipping quotes. Container freight companies use sophisticated software programs in order to arrive at the more exact container freight rate you want. This is because there are so many factors that need to be included in the quote.
The first thing you need to understand is that in international container shipping, weight is not as much of a factor as volume. Because of this, it will be your responsibility to accurately assess the volume of goods you will be shipping. Your container freight company can help you do this.
Your container freight rate will be partially determined by the size of shipping container you need. If you have a 3 or 4 bedroom family home, you will probably need to ship 40 foot container. This is a standard sized container and is by far the most frequently shipped size of container. If you are shipping the contents of a 2 bedroom home or an apartment, you may be able to save a little and ship 20 foot container. This size of container also has the advantage of being transportable by truck. It can be delivered to your door and loaded there.
If you are only shipping some select household goods, you can get what is called a "less load." This simply means that you don't require an entire container. Container shipping companies find other containers going to the same destination and include your belonging in one of these that is also not completely filled. The container freight rate for a partial load like this must be calculated by the container freight company.
Other factors that are included in your container freight rate may include insurance, extra charges for fragile goods and extra charges if you require a special container. This is not usually an issue for household goods, which usually go into a standard dry goods container, but can make a big difference if you are shipping a refrigerated container or container with an extra heavy load, such as might be the case if you were shipping a large amount of industrial equipment.
If you want to save money on your container freight rate, consider some of the do-it-yourself options that are available to you. For example, you can box all of your personal and household goods yourself and then stuff the container and save a great deal on labor costs. Also, included in your container freight rate will be loading and offloading dates. If you adhere to these dates and don't leave your goods at the container port warehouse, you won't have to pay expensive storage costs. Remember to be realistic when discussing your needs with your container freight company can give you the most accurate container freight rate they can.