Choosing the right freight forwarder is a critical decision. The choice between Cost of goods, Insurance Freight (CIF), and Free on Board (FOB) shipping terms often determines what type of forwarder you’ll use. The consequences of this decision are significant.
In CIF terms, the buyer pays shipping and insurance on a consignment. The seller bears the cost of any loss or damage until the goods arrive at the destination port. With FOB terms, the buyer takes ownership of the goods once loaded onboard a vessel, bearing more responsibility – and giving them more control.
There are some significant differences in the experience from start to finish, depending on your chosen terms.
The Experience of Working with a Foreign-based Forwarder
When you select CIF shipping, you will often end up with a foreign-based forwarder, most likely from the country of origin.
The process at origin is essential, and both the US and a foreign-based forwarder perform similar services. The critical difference is the quality of communication and the amount of visibility. Often, your supplier or factory will choose a foreign-based forwarder – and they work for them. Your supplier is the client. They are focused primarily on their needs rather than yours. You, or someone within your organization, will need to act as the supply chain and logistics manager, chasing down information and troubleshooting the entire process.
A few things you will have to do:
- Actively follow-up on arrival status.
- Arrange trucking to and from the ports.
- Follow up on product location and cargo release status.
- Arrange and track customs clearance.
Poor customer service is often an issue with foreign-based forwarders. They usually don’t have an office in the US, utilizing a handling agent instead – an agent they pay little. A handling agent’s job is to collect money and release your shipment – and not much more. They are often short on details and aren’t motivated to troubleshoot on your behalf. In short, you’re not their customer, and if issues arise, you don’t have easy access to solutions.
Working with a US-based Forwarder
US-based freight forwarders like DGL are far more customer-centric, and YOU are their customer. As your freight forwarder, Dedola provides 24/7 customer support. We assign a dedicated customer support representative who will be there for you every step of the way. You will have access to TrakIt, a powerful online shipment tracking tool giving you real-time visibility of the status of your shipment. As your US-based freight forwarder, DGL will take care of you and your valuable cargo from start to finish.
A US-based freight forwarder will:
- Manage an array of logistical challenges. They will handle operations at the load port and discharge port, ocean carriage, customs clearance, and local and long-haul trucking, giving you a high level of visibility and access through the entire process.
- Follow-up with the shipper on your behalf.
- File ISF/AMS paperwork.
- Ensure that every process is completed accurately and on time.
- Provide a dedicated representative to handle your shipment in case there is an issue.
- Provide continuous access to unparalleled expertise and consulting.
Choose a US-based Freight Forwarder Like Dedola Global Logistics
Your company’s freight is your livelihood. You need to know where it is and that it is moving seamlessly to its final destination. Don’t choose a freight forwarder that is likely to fall short of these expectations – it will create problems for you, your staff, and your business.
At Dedola Global Logistics, we maintain a strong customer focus on everything that we do. We work tirelessly to meet and exceed all your expectations. At the same time, we optimize your supply chain and provide industry-leading service.
Contact us today, or call (562) 594-8988 for a consultation or free quote.