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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS – EXPORT CARGO FROM THE USA

Page 1 - LCL  |  Page 2 - FCL  |  Page 3 - Shipping Vehicles

LCL – Shipping Boxed or Crated Cargo & GENERAL QUESTIONS

1. What is an LCL - Less Than Container Load? What can and cannot be shipped as LCL?
2. What are my options on Self-delivery and Pickup?
3. How it works? What should I expect on my LCL shipment step by step?
4. Why should I pay that 75% security deposit?
5. Where can I find an address of the shipping terminal to deliver my boxes?
6. What does Express Release Bill of Lading mean? 
7. Can I amend my Bill of Lading?
8. What are Cubic Meter and W/M – weight or measurement?
9. Should I palletize my boxes or not?
10. What about insurance on my goods?
11. Do you guarantee transit time on my shipment?
12. Are there any hidden costs in your quote?
12A. What are destination charges?
12B. What is SED?
13. Can I arrange an international charity shipment with an international transportation company?
14. How can I cancel my shipment?
15. What will happen if I not pay your invoices?
 
16. What shipping documents should I submit to my export shipment?
17. I’m not in the USA. I order goods from U.S. remotely. How can I complete my shipment with you?
18. Payments by credit card online via Google Checkout or PayPal
19. Processing shipments upon a copy of check or money order
 

1. What is an LCL - Less Than Container Load? What can and cannot be shipped as LCL? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

In respect of sea freight LCL an abbreviation for “Less than Container Load”. This term is commonly used in the sea freight industry and by international moving companies to describe a sea freight service that designed for shipping boxed, crated or palletized cargo that cannot fill an entire 20 or 40 foot sea container. For more information refer to this link. If you are shipping household goods or personal effects not for sale from the USA, then we recommend you reading this link as well.  

You CANNOT use LCL Service for the following commodities:

  • Unboxed or uncrated cargo cannot be shipped as LCL.
     
  • Any motorized vehicles that require DMV registration (cars, motorcycles, mopeds, jet skis, ATV’s, snowmobiles etc) are not permitted to be moved as LCL sea freight. This is due to US Customs Regulations that will not recognize any warehouse as an exam site for inspection. 
     
    You can ship motorized vehicle using our service on shipping vehicles from the USA in containers and Ro-Ro. Ocean freight cost per a motorized vehicle should be equal to the ocean freight cost of shipping a mid-size car, but always must be re-confirmed upon a booking request.
     
  • Items that will not fit into a 40 foot container (approx.39.5'/12m in Length; 7.5'/2.36m in Width; 8'/2.26m in Height) will be considered oversized and cannot be shipped as LCL freight. 
     
  • Hazardous or over-length (longer than 3.65m / 12ft) and other special or irregular cargo are subject to surcharges and can be accepted to the shipment after approval and rate confirmation only. 
     
  • We strongly recommend do not ship food, vegetable or animal products. Find more in this link.
     
  • Perishables Goods are not permitted. 
     
  • We do not ship live animals and plants.
     
  • Ro-Ro, bulk or charter cannot be considered as LCL freight.   

2. What are my options on Self-delivery and Pickup? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

LCL seafreight service can be offered for boxed, crated or palletized cargo.

With us you should be able to complete the entire shipment online. No matter if you travel from place to place. Having an Internet access to our website is all you need to control your shipment.

While using our online shipping system in order to get a quote or during scheduling your shipment, you may either decide to self-deliver your boxed goods to nearest shipping terminal or request us pick it up at your door.  

If you had decided to self-deliver your boxed goods to nearest shipping terminal, then please NOTICE THE ESSENTIAL DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ORIGIN SHIP TERMINALS WITH OR WITHOUT ASTERISK (*) as listed in the drop-down list of ORIGIN terminals of our LCL online price calculator

  • Terminals WITHOUT asterisks (Atlanta, GA for example) are direct ocean carriers facilities named CFS – Container Freight Stations. Here is the list of most commonly used Container Freight Stations in the USA and Canada, alphabetically by city name and ZIP code.
     
    Shipping directly from CFSs is the most economical way to ship boxed or crated cargo oversea. There will be no additional charges to take your cargo on board of vessel.
     
    Also, charges for shipments self-delivered directly to ocean carrier CFS based on its size only (total chargeable volume per cubic meter). WEIGHT FOR SUCH SHIPMENTS IS NOT A PRICING FACTOR unless its density does not exceed thelimit nominated by carrier, which is most often equal 1654 lbs (or 750 Kilograms) per Cubic Meter. U.S. Customs asks you to provide estimate weight for statistical purpose only. 
     
    Notice: If for some reasons you cannot bring your boxes to the ship terminal, you may ask a friend of yours or hire a local cartage company to deliver your goods on your behalf. All he/she needs is a printed copy of Dock Receipt that you will receive in e-mail from us. You may consider the Dock Receipt as “a ticket for your cargo”. 
     
  • Terminals WITH asterisks (Akron, OH* for example) are local terminals of domestic LTL carriers. Cargo dropped off at such terminals requires being line hauled to an ocean carrier's facility (CFS) and subject to the line haul charge on top of ocean freight as from CFS. 
     
     
  • Finally you will be able to request us to pickup your boxed goods at your door. 
     
    We will determine pickup charges by ZIP (postal) code of your goods location entered in our online system. You will be asked to select type of goods and pickup location, enter your ZIP (postal) code, valid email and submit your quote request online. Then we should reply with a complete quote in a few business hours.

Shippers should be aware that Line Haul charges and Pickup charges are based on dimensional weight of cargo and freight class. Please find more about dim. weight and freight class in this link.

 

3. How it works? What should I expect on my LCL shipment step by step? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

Seven steps that you should be aware of: 

1st STEP – BOOK YOUR SHIPMENT ONLINE

The first and absolutely necessary step to begin a shipment is to schedule the shipment online in our website. In order to avoid misinterpretation, misspelling and mistyping we do not accept bookings over the phone or via fax. 

Notice: It is too hard to predict precise volume and weight of shipment at a time of booking. Actual volume and weight on your shipment most likely will differ from those that you had provided in your booking request.

When you book your LCL shipment, you may just estimate your total volume and weight. Carrier's ship terminal will define actual volume and weight on your shipment later. See the Step #4.


2nd STEP – FIRST-TIME CUSTOMERS PAY A SECURITY DEPOSIT

After submitting your booking request online you will receive our e-mail with a Reference number of your shipment and:

  • If it is your first shipment with us, then you will receive our e-mail with request to pay a security deposit. Typically this deposit is equal to 75% of the estimated total price obtained on our website when you booked your shipment. The deposit will be applied to the final cost of your shipment. Consider this e-mail an invoice on your deposit. 

We accept major credit cards online. We accept business and personal checks, money orders and wire transfers. Please review the Payment Conditions and Return Policy.

  • Customers who already have an account with us should disregard this deposit request. They wait for our e-mail with shipping instructions and after that for our final invoice based on the actual w/m derived from the carrier’s ship terminal.    


3rd STEP – RECEIVE SHIPPING INSTRUCTIONS IN E-MAIL, SUBMIT YOUR DOCUMENTS ONLINE AND DELIVER YOUR BOXES TO THE SHIP TERMINAL or MEET OUR PICKUP DRIVER (IF PICKUP REQUESTED)

We will need at least one business day from the day of booking in order to schedule your shipment.

  • For new customers time counts from the day of receiving funds on the security deposit request. After we receive the deposit, we send to the payer confirmation e-mail. Consider that e-mail a receipt for your paid deposit.

You will receive our e-mail with complete Shipping Instructions generated individually for your shipment. These Shipping Instructions will contain:

  1. Our Reference No. and Carriers Booking No.;
  2. Carrier’s terminal address & phone number;
  3. Sailing details on your shipment, including: 
    -- ETD - Estimated Time of Departure 
    -- ETA - Estimated Time of Arrival 
    -- Vessel, Voyage, Routing
  4. Link for printing your shipping labels;
  5. Links to fill out and submit your essential ship documents online, including: 
    -- Dock Receipt
    -- Valued Packing List
    -- Commercial Invoice (in general applies to commercial shipments only).

Follow these Shipping Instructions and deliver your boxed or crated cargo to the carriers ship terminal or meet our pickup driver (if pickup requested).

IMPORTANT: You have to complete and submit all documents in the Shipping Instructions before your freight is delivered to the ship terminal or tendered to the pickup.

NOTICE: You do not have to pay anything at the terminal or to the pickup driver. Wait for our final invoice via e-mail. The exception is if you self-deliver your boxed goods to carrier's terminal and request the terminal to palletize your boxes. Then you should pay for the palletizing to the terminal. Ensure a receipt is obtained.  
 

4th STEP – PAY THE FINAL INVOICE AND HAVE YOUR CARGO SHIPPED TO THE DESTINATION. VOLUME AND WEIGHT.

It is too hard to predict precise volume and weight of shipment at a time of booking. Actual volume and weight on your shipment most likely will differ from those that you had provided in your booking request.

After a ship terminal will accept you cargo, the carrier send to us volume and weight verification on your cargo, i.e. the actual volume and weight on your shipment. Based on this information we e-mail you our final invoice with total charges on your shipment less the security deposit that you had paid already. Typically we will e-mail you an invoice in few business days after you dropped off cargo at the ship terminal. 

Upon you payment we will e-mail a confirmation on your final payment, release your freight to the international shipment from the origin and your goods depart as scheduled.  


5th STEP – RECEIVE YOUR BILL OF LADING

In few days after Estimated Time of Departure (ETD) (sometimes it takes a little longer) we e-mail to you your carriers Express Release Bill of Lading (consider the B/L a title for your goods). This Bill of Lading will show you complete information on your shipment and contact details of the carrier’s destination receiving station, i.e. your destination agent.

Print the Bill of Lading and keep it in your records in order to recover your cargo at the destination. Shipments on Express Release should be released upon providing a copy of the B/L. No originals required.

Notice: If a shipment had paid by credit card(s) then before issuing a bill of lading we may ask for a confirmation that payer clearly understands that the bill of lading is our final document on this shipment. It is the title on shipped goods and proof on transfer of the ownership on the shipped goods to the consignee in the bill of lading (recipient of shipped goods).

This will confirm that after receiving the bill of lading our service provided is completed as agreed. All parties that may concern of payment(s) on the shipment done by credit card(s) will consider this email the receipt on this payment(s) with payer’s signature in it.


6th STEP – MEET YOUR GOODS AT THE DESTINATION.

In few days before ETA - Estimated Time of Arrival, carrier’s destination agent should contact consignee/notify party with a Notice of Arrival.

If for any reasons you do not receive the Arrival Notice, then we strongly recommend you contact the destination agent on the ETA day in order to find out status of your shipment. You can see contact info of the destination agent in your Bill of Lading within the ‘For Delivery/Pickup Please Apply To’ block of the Bill of Lading. Fax or e-mail them a copy of your Express Release Bill of Lading and ask for recovery instructions on your shipment. 

Shipment with trans-shipments, i.e. your Bill of Lading shows that a port of discharge is different from the final destination: ETA on shipments with trans-shipments may not be ETA to the final destination. Check ETA port in your ship documents. If it is not to the final destination, then it may take additional 15-25 days to get cargo to the final destination. Some trans-shipments, from Europe to Africa for example, may take longer.

Important: Most likely carrier’s destination agent will not receive any information on your shipment until very few days before it actually reaches the destination. If you contact them in advance, then fax or e-mail them a copy of your Bill of Lading, verify your contact info in order to get an arrival notice and wait for the notice of arrival. 


7th STEP – CARGO RECOVERY AT THE DESTINATION. DESTINATION CHARGES.

IMPORTANT: All international shipments are subject to destination charges. In general these charges include: 1 - Destination Country Government (Customs) related charges, i.e. duty and taxes (if any), harbor fees, fee on entry filing by a destination Customs Broker etc.; 2 - Destination terminal(s) handling charges and fees (THC); 3 – Service fee from carrier’s destination agent on handling and delivery (if you requesting delivery to your door) of your shipment. Destination charges vary depending on a destination country and carrier. Typically it is out of control of U.S. Freight Forwarder. Guiding importer in the complexity of cargo recovery procedures at the destination is responsibility of carrier’s destination agent.

As a rule, you do not have to be present in person to recover your import at the destination. Follow instructions from your destination agent. Provide them all necessary information on your shipment by phone, fax or e-mail; pay destination charges in order to get release on your cargo; and, if you wish, arrange delivery of your goods to your door directly with the destination agent or use any local cartage company of your choice.     

  • For commercial shipments destination charges depend on the commodity.
  • Most countries do not charge a duty or tax for personal effects shipments. For personal LCL shipments, if cargo an exempt from paying duty, the total may vary from $100 up to $300 or more. For sizable shipments 8-14+ cubic meters this charges may be comparable to FCL (full container load) - $600-$1000.

You may want to check in advance with your destination country embassy or ask a destination country’s customs broker about Government (Customs) regulations on your shipment.

Notice: a part or all destination charges may be required to be paid at a port of entree, but not at the final destination. I.e. you have to obtain Customs release and pay part of THC at a port of entry. Then your cargo will continue travel to the final destination cleared with customs.   

4. Why should I pay that 75% security deposit? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

We offer credit to qualified customers who (1) had completed at least two shipments with us, (2) submitted our credit application and (3) been approved. This is our policy.

First-time shippers have to provide this 75% security deposit before we proceed with bookings on theirs behalf. The deposit will be applied to the final cost of shipment. Please review payments conditions and return policy.

5. Where can I find an address of the shipping terminal to deliver my boxes? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

We work with numerous carriers. Each carrier has several terminals within a city-zone. All terminals are located near ports and in major cities listed in our website. Here is the list of most commonly used Container Freight Stations in the USA and Canada, alphabetically by city name and ZIP code.

Upon your booking request we must work on your shipment in order to assign a proper carriers terminal in the requested by you area. Depend on a carrier and routing the address of the ship terminal will be provided in our e-mail containing our shipping instructions, after your booking is completed. 

Important: Every single international shipment is unique. In order to eliminate any miss-understandings and mistakes, shipper must not accept any verbal statements as final (particularly on a ship terminal location). All commitments and promises have to be in writing.

6. What does Express Release Bill of Lading mean? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

By default all shipments with us go on express releases. Express = telex release = means that you do not have to provide originals Bill of Ladings in order to recover your goods at the destination. Shipment on express release should be released at the destination upon providing a copy of the B/L received from us in e-mail. No originals required.

Several countries around the world, particularly Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, Certain countries in Africa, do not accept express releases. Carrier should specify it upon issue of B/L. Then we will mail you a set of originals Bill of Ladings by USPS First Class Mail within USA/Canada for free. Expedited or international mail must be prepaid. If shipper/receptionist requires a set of originals B/L for shipments to countries that DO accept express release, then $50 fee will be added on top of cost of the mail.

Find more about Bill of Lading in this link

7. Can I amend my Bill of Lading? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

Any amendment in a Bill of Lading after it had been issued is a headache for you. It may not always be possible. Especially when goods had arrived to the destination. We strongly recommend you to pay extreme attention to information that you entering when booking your shipment. While submitting your shipping documents online you will have several opportunities to verify and correct the entered info.  

However, as soon as a Bill of Lading is issued, any amendments to it are subject to carrier's amendments' fee. This fee varies from $70 to $200 or more.
 
If you still need amendments, we suggest you to contact a carrier’s destination agent first and request them to re-issue your B/L at the destination, if possible. Otherwise, we will work on these amendments on your behalf (if the amendments will be possible). However, we will charge you for this depending on the complexity on top of the carrier’s amendments fee. Notice that completing B/L amendments is not guaranteed and may take an uncertain amount of time.

8. What are Cubic Meter and W/M – weight or measurement? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

  • One cubic meter is a considerably large volume. 
  • A cubic meter is a measurement of volume, equal to space that is one meter wide, one meter long, and one meter high.
  • One metric meter = 3.28 metric feet.
  • ONE CUBIC METER = 35 CUBIC FEET.

Find more about Cubic Meter at this link

W/M – weight or measurement, whichever is greater. W/M presents cargo density limit. Typically per Cubic Meter. 

Find more about W/M at this link 

9. Should I palletize my boxes or not? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

Palletized and shrink-wrapped cargo has much higher probability to reach its destination without damages or loss. However additional charges for palletized cargo will appear:

  • Cost of pallet and labor
  • A charge due to extra chargeable volume for palletized cargo

Find more on this topic at this link

10. What about insurance on my goods? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

Find more about insurance at this link

11. Do you guarantee transit time on my shipment? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

ETT - Estimated Transit Time, i.e. a time slot between ETD - Estimated Time of Departure and ETA - Estimated Time of Arrival in quotes is not precise and should be verified upon a booking request. Transit time in booking confirmations on shipment by sea cannot be guaranteed as well. Although ocean freight cannot guarantee transit time, normally shipments depart and arrive as scheduled.

Notice: for shipments with trans-shipments, that is when your Bill of Lading shows that a port of discharge is different from the final destination, Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) may not be ETA to the final destination. Check ETA port in your ship documents. If it is not to the final destination, then it may take additional 15-25 days to get cargo to the final destination. Some trans-shipments, from Europe to Africa for example, may take longer.

12. Are there any hidden costs in your quote? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

There are no hidden costs on ocean freight offered in quotes and booking confirmations from us. Your rated bill of lading will verify carrier’s ocean freight and surcharges on your shipment as well.

However, exporter should be aware of at least general standards in the shipping industry in order to understand what is covered in a price quote obtained from a freight forwarder. That’s why if you are a first-time shipper and/or not familiar with general shipping procedures then WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND READING THIS WEBSITE’S FAQ AND REFERENCES SECTIONS CAREFULLY BEFORE STARTING TO SCHEDULE YOUR SHIPMENT. 

Below is a recap on charges that may not be covered in an LCL price offered, based on the volume and weight information provided by you when you quote or book your shipment: 

I. PICKUP. Pickup rates depend on type of pickup site and commodity type. When shipper requests a quote/booking he/she must select proper type of pickup site and commodity type. Selection of incorrect type of pickup site and commodity type may result to price change.

Residential or business with limited access pickup is curbside-service. The driver will load freight from driveway, front porch, garage or acceptable loading area. No inside service is permitted due to liability. Some additional charges may apply if your pickup conditions or area are out of normal range. The charges will be calculated and forwarded to you in the final or a separate invoice. The following charges may occur but are not limited to: attempted pickup, debris removal, inside pickup, waiting time etc.  

II. PRICE DIFFERENCE DUE TO DISCREPANCY ON W/M PROVIDED BY YOU IN YOUR BOOKING REQUEST AND THE ACTUAL W/M OF CARGO TENDERED TO THE SHIPMENT. It is hard to predict precise w/m (i.e. total size and weight) of shipment at a time of booking. Actual w/m on your shipment most likely will differ from those that you had provided in your booking request.

After a carrier’s ship terminal will accept you boxed goods, the carrier send to us w/m verification on your freight, i.e. the actual size and weight of your freight. Our final invoice will reflect those verified by carrier’s terminal w/m, but not w/m provided in your booking request.

If for some reasons you will disagree with the verified w/m, then upon your request, we furnish you with a copy of the w/m verification document. After that you may contact the ship terminal and resolve the issue.  

III. EXTRA-VOLUME CHARGES DUE TO PALLETIZING YOUR LOOSE BOXES. If you request to palletize your boxes at a ship terminal, where you dropping your cargo off, extra-volume charges due to palletizing will occur: (1) Cost of pallet and labor. Typically vary from $35 to $55 per skid including cost of pallet. It should be paid directly to the ship terminal. Insure an invoice obtained. (2) A charge due to extra chargeable volume for palletized cargo. Click on this link for more information this link

IV. DIMENSIONAL WEIGHT and/or FREIGHT CLASS REASSIGNMENT BY AN LTL CARRIER (applies to shipments that require line-haul and pickups only).

Pickup and/or line-haul charges are based either on Actual or Dimensional weight of your cargo, whichever is greater. 

Our system helps you to determine freight class based on the density – the one out of four characteristics. However, shipper must consider the rest of the characteristics and change freight class on his/her shipment if necessary. You may also call the NMFTA direct at (703) 838-1810 in order to reconfirm freight class on your shipment by commodity.

IMPORTANT: SHIPPER IS HELD RESPONSIBLE ON FREIGHT CLASS DECLARATION. OUR PICKUP/LINE HAUL PRICE QUOTES ARE BASED ON THE FREIGHT CLASS DECLARED BY SHIPPER. DECLARATION OF INCORRECT FREIGHT CLASS MAY RESULT TO PRICE SCHEDULE CHANGE.

Please find more about dim. weight and freight class in this link.

V. OPTIONAL $35 FEE FOR FILING SED (SHIPPER’S EXPORT DECLARATION). According to U.S. customs regulations, all export shipments must be declared to the U.S. Census Bureau by filing SED in AES at www.aesdirect.gov

Exempts from filing SED (in general):

  • Domestic shipments (to Hawaii for example). However, SEDs are required for shipments between the USA and Puerto Rico as well as between the USA and Virgin Islands of the United States.
     
  • Shipments containing Household Goods or Personal Propriety not for sale of total value less than $2500.

Shipments without SED (if not exempt) cannot be released to the export. If you file SED online in www.aesdirect.gov by yourself, then we need AES ITN from you BEFORE your cargo will be delivered to the carrier’s ship terminal.

Otherwise we can file SED on your behalf based on the commodity description provided in your ship documents for $35 up to two Harmonized Tariff numbers. $15 per Harmonized Tariff number thereafter. Notice: Household Goods or Personal Propriety shipments typically do not require specifying Harmonized Tariff numbers.

If you are requesting us to file SED on your behalf, then in order to do so we must have from you at least:

  1. A valued packing list or commercial invoice, which contain: commodity description (1), value of your shipment in USD (2), estimated weight (3) and volume (4). Our online forms for these documents allow you conveniently submit all that info from your computer. You may use this simple form online in order to submit the information to us.
     
  2. U.S. federal tax ID (EIN) or facsimile copy of foreign passport with U.S. visa No. 

IMPORTANT NOTE FROM U.S. CUSTOMS: Social Security Numbers (SSN) will not be accepted as a valid USPPI ID as of December 3, 2009.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau / U.S. Customs and Border Protection regulation and per the Foreign Trade Regulations (FTR) Social Security Numbers (SSN) will not be accepted as a valid USPPI ID as of December 3, 2009. Any Authorized Agent that files on behalf of customers using an SSN as the USPPI ID need to notify their customers that they need to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN). USPPIs can obtain an EIN by visiting www.irs.gov/businesses/small and selecting "Employer ID Numbers (EIN)". 

Our online booking form provides options on filing SED.  
 
VI. SET OF ORIGINALS BILL OF LADING IF REQUIRED. Most shipments with us go on express releases.

Express = telex release = surrender means that you do not have to provide originals Bill of Ladings in order to recover your goods at the destination. Shipment on express release should be released at the destination upon providing a copy of the B/L received from us by e-mail. No originals required.

However, several countries around the world, particularly Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, Certain countries in Africa, do not accept express releases. Carrier should specify it upon issue of B/L. Then we will mail you a set of originals Bill of Ladings by USPS First Class Mail within USA/Canada for free. Expedited or international mail must be prepaid. If you request a set of originals B/L for shipments to countries that DO accept express release, then $50 fee will be added on top of cost of mail.

VII. PORT OF ENTRY FEE. Most of the time this fee associates with shipments with transshipments, i.e. your Bill of Lading shows that a port of discharge is different from the final destination. The fee varies from $25 to $50 and included in carrier’s B/L freight charges.

VIII. DESTINATION CHARGES (Do not apply on domestic shipments. To Hawaii for example). All international shipments are subject to destination charges. In general these charges include: 1 - Destination Country Government (Customs) related charges, i.e. duty and taxes (if any), harbor fees, fee on entry filing by a destination Customs Broker etc.; 2 - Destination terminal(s) handling charges and fees (THC); 3 – Service fee from carrier’s destination agent on handling and delivery (if you are requesting a delivery to your door) of your shipment. Destination charges vary depending on a destination country and carrier. Typically it is out of control of U.S. Freight Forwarder. Guiding importer in the complexity of cargo recovery procedures at the destination is responsibility of carrier’s destination agent.

  • For commercial shipments destination charges depend on the commodity.
  • Most countries do not charge a duty or tax on household goods and personal effects. For personal LCL shipments, if cargo is exempt from paying duty, total destination charges may vary from $100 up to $300 or more. For sizable shipments 8-12+ cubic meters this charges may be comparable to destination charges on FCL (full container load) shipments - $600-$1000.

You may want to check in advance with your destination country embassy or ask a destination country’s customs broker about Government (Customs) regulations on your shipment.

Notice: a part or all destination charges may be required to be paid at a port of entree, but not at the final destination. I.e. you have to obtain Customs release and pay part of THC at a port of entry. Then your cargo will continue travel to the final destination cleared with customs.   

Notice: As a rule, you do not have to be present in person when recover your import at the destination. Follow instructions from your destination agent. Provide them all necessary information on your shipment by phone, fax or in e-mail; pay destination charges in order to get release on your cargo; and, if you wish, arrange delivery of your goods to your door directly with the destination agent or use any local cartage company of your choice.     

IX. DELIVERY GOODS TO THE CONSIGNEE AT DESTINATIONS (OPTIONAL). At this time we do not offer delivery service from a destination ship terminal to consignee’s door. Cleared with Customs and released by the destination terminal cargo should be self-picked. However, most destination agents offer delivery service for an adding cost. Otherwise you can hire any local cartage company in your destination country, request them pickup your released goods and bring it to your door.

X. Depend on commodity being shipped, shipment’s conditions, destination country customs etc other specific charges may apply on irregular shipments.

13. Can I arrange an international charity shipment with an international transportation company? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

The answer is yes, you may arrange an international charity shipment with an international transportation company. However, in the reality, after your donation arrives to the destination the consignee (recipient of the donation) may be unable or do not want to pay destination charges associated with recovery of your donation. 

Furthermore, officials in certain countries, particularly in South Africa and/or landlocked countries that receive ocean freight via South Africa may deny entries as long as commodity described as a charity shipment, donation, free aid, used or second hand goods etc. 

The importation of second hand clothes, books etc are prohibited in South Africa. Shipper must firstly apply for an import permit with the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) before instructing an international shipping company to ship second hand goods.

If you are still going to ship an international charity shipment (i.e. donate goods overseas including the shipping cost), then before doing so, please wisely consider the following situations on your charity shipment:

  1. Tht recipient (consignee) of your your charity shipment does not pay destination charges even though you had already transferred to him money to pay for the release.
  2. You may be involved in a bureaucratic correspondence with destination county officials in order to get an approval on entry of your international charity shipment  to the destination country. Notice, you cannot avoid carrier’s storage etc fees on your international charity shipment due to delay with this entry.
  3. If you failed, then be prepared to pay all charges and fees associated with the return of your donation back to you or charges on destruction of your charity shipment.    

Often, as soon as an ocean freight carrier had recognized that your ship donation, having bad experience on charity shipments, they may inform you that your international charity shipment must be shipped on DDP (Delivery Duty Paid) basis with all destination charges prepaid. In this event:

  1. Commercial invoice must be presented to the ocean freight carrier’s destinations agent before your international charity shipment is tendered at the origin in order to estimate total destination charges. Notice, it takes a time and may not be free of charge. 
  2. Actual destination charges may differ from the original estimate. Then typically it requires to be prepaid based on the estimated cost plus 15-30%. 
  3. If actual destination charges will exceed the initial estimation, then the difference is on consignee account. If not paid then funds paid initially go to destruction of the international charity shipment.

As a conclusion: We believe that God blesses your kindness. However, an unconsidered international charity shipment may result to problems for all parties involved in the shipment. Please make your donations prudently. 

14. How can I cancel my shipment? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

For new customers, shipments with unpaid deposits will not be processed. There is no obligation to cancel a shipment with unpaid deposit. Existing clients please refer to our return policy

If a security deposit is paid and shipment canceled before cargo tendered to the shipment, the customer will be refunded, minus $25 processing fee.

After cargo is submitted to the shipment, but still at the origin and can be returned, then we will request the carrier to put it on hold. The customer will be refunded after his/her written confirmation that goods are taken back. Processing fee $75 minimum and any charges accrued on this return are on account of the customer. 

  • All credit cards refunds are subject to transaction fees on the refund amount 3.79% or $10 minimum, whichever is greater, addad to processing fee.
     
  • Missing scheduled cut off (latest delivery)/pickup day: If cargo has not delivered to a ship terminal on the intended delivery day as requested by customer at a time of booking, then we will roll the shipment over to the next available vessel without additional notice. Processing fee $25 will apply on each roll unless exceeds the security deposit limit. Attempt pickup fee will apply toward security deposit paid in advance.

After carrier had processed a shipment, i.e. cargo consolidated in the container, loaded aboard a vessel etc or/and after the ship date a refund cannot be provided.

15. What will happen if I not pay your invoices? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

If a new customer does not pay a security deposit then we will not process his/her shipment. Clients with settled accounts as agreed in the accounts.

If freight is tendered to the shipment, but our final invoice is not paid on the due date, then late payment fee will apply. Late payment fee is 5% per day on the total due in invoice / $200 minimum, whichever is greater.

If not paid in 10 (ten) calendar days after the due date, then besides the late fee, we may cancel the Express Release on the shipment. As the result of express release cancellation consignee will not be able to recover his/her goods at the destination unless received a set of originals Bill of Ladings from us. Expedited mail with this set of originals will cost USD200 on top of other charges related to issuing the originals B/L. We will not take any responsibilities on any storage, demurrage and other charges connected to delays with the release. We will not take any responsibilities on any charges connected to any delay of the freight at any point on its way to the place of release. Insurance will be canceled as unpaid on the time of express release cancellation as well.

If not paid within 10 (ten) days from the day of arrival to the destination, then shipment will be considered abandoned, i.e. requested to be destroyed or re-consigned and re-possessed and sold on the action in order to cover expenses related to the freight, storage, demurrage etc charges. U.S. and destination security officials will be notified and additional fines levied.

16. What shipping documents should I submit to my export shipment? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

Shipper should clearly understand that he/she is responsible for description and legality of commodity and sufficiency of documentation submitted to an international shipment.

Carrier’s bill of lading, final document that acts as title to the shipped goods, as a rule states ‘SHIPPER'S LOAD AND COUNT’ and ‘SAID BY SHIPPER TO CONTAIN’. That means that the carrier (and a freight forwarder who represents this carrier) is not responsible for information provided by shipper on his commodity. 

It is shipper’s responsibility to provide all necessary documents related to his shipment that will be required by origin and destination country officials.

Below is the list of common used documents required to be submitted to an international shipment by sea:

MANDATORY DOCUMENTS:

A. Bill of Lading – Carriers transport document. Shows cargo routing, consigner, consignee, cargo description, etc.

Bill of Lading will be issued to shipper (consigner) upon full payment of freight invoice and in few days after ETD – Estimated Time of Departure.   

B.1. For commercial shipments - Commercial Invoice. Complete description of commodity being shipped.

B.2. For shipping household goods and personal belongings – Valued Packing List. An inventory list with value assigned to each item being shipped.

Notice: some courtiers require proforma commercial invoices for personal shipments as well. However, having a complete Valued Packing List submitted at origin, upon destination customs request, you will be able easy to transfer your Valued Packing List in form of proforma commercial invoice.   

In respect of U.S. Customs, all Commercial Invoices (and Valued Packing Lists) must be in English and show:

  • Value of cargo in US Dollars (exchange rate = date of export);
  • Shippers full name and address (M.I.D. – manufacturer’s identification);
  • Consignee full name and address;
  • Detailed description of cargo/freight;
  • Quantity of cargo shipped;
  • Weight of cargo shipped;
  • Cargo’s Country of Origin

ADDITIONAL DOCUMENTS DEPENDING ON COMMODITY AND COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

D. Packing List – Breakdown description: pieces, weights and packing materials. (Examples - Wood Pallets, Skids, Crates, Boxes, Dunnage, Straw Packing, etc.)

E. Fumigation Certificate– Certification that cargo and packing materials were fumigated after cargo had been containerized and is free of Infestation.

F. Special Documents – Dependent on commodity and country of origin.

Visa 
Quota 
Visa/Quota 
Certificate of Origin 
North American Free Trade Agreement Certificate of Origin (N.A.F.T.A.) 
Packing Declaration 
Dangerous Goods Declaration – hazardous materials 
Fish and Wildlife Declaration 
Consular Legalized documents 
F.D.A. 
U.S.D.A. 
Anti-Dumping

17. I’m not in the USA. I order goods from U.S. remotely. How can I complete my shipment with you? Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

Yes, with us you can complete an LCL shipment from the USA remotely. Just follow these simple instructions depends on either your vendor (seller) provides free delivery within the USA or not:

  • If your vendor (seller) provides free delivery within the USA, then get a price quote in our website. Then schedule your shipment as a self-delivered to ocean carrier's ship terminal. I.e. schedule your shipment online via Option A in your price quote. We will email to your vendor our dock receipt/shipping instructions on delivery of your boxed goods to an ocean carrier’s ship terminal. 
     
    Besides other info our dock receipt/shipping instructions will contain an OCEAN CARRIER SHIP TERMINAL ADDRESS (1) assigned to your shipment and CARRIER'S BOOKING# (2).
     
    Ask your vendor following our instructions. ASK YOUR VENDOR TO PUT CARRIER'S BOOKING# AS A MAIN REFERENCE# ON ALL DOCUMENTS RELATED TO DELIVERY OF YOUR BOXED GOODS TO THE OCEAN CARRIER RECEIVING TERMINAL and proceed on delivery to the address provided. Your cargo will be recognized at the carrier terminal by the booking#, accepted and shipped to you. 
     
    Notice that shipments via cities listed in our website  WITHOUT asterisk (*), Atlanta, GA for example, are most cost-effective way to ship overseas. Shipments via terminals WITH asterisk, Akron, OH* for example, will be subject to line-haul charge added on top of ocean freight. For more info follow this link.
     
  • If your vendor (seller) DOES NOT provide free delivery within the USA, then at a time of getting a price quote in our website select YES, PICKUP REQUIRE. Then book your shipment via our quote received in email, which will include a pickup option.  We will pick up your boxed or crated goods from your vendor and ship it to you overseas.

Notice: By default our system emails all information and documents to consigners (shippers). IF YOU ARE CONSIGNEE (RECIPIENT) AND WOULD LIKE TO RECEIVE COPIES OF OUR EMAIL, THEN PUT A NOTICE ABOUT THAT IN THE 'COMMENTS AND QUESTIONS' FIELD OF OUR ONLINE BOOKING FORM (THE LAST BLOCK OF THE FORM).

Upon your authorization we may also contact your vendor on your behalf. Retrieving and providing general info is free of charge. Resolving time-consuming, more complicated issues should be paid $60 per hour/$60 minimum. 

18. Payments by credit card online via Google Checkout or PayPal Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

If not agreed in advance in writing in email payments by credit card online via Google Checkout or PayPal are limited by US$750 on total per entire shipment. Payments (full or partial) that exceed US$1000 on total must not be done by credit card, but by check, money order or wire transfer. We reserve the right to refund unauthorized by us payments done online via Google Checkout or PayPal back to the credit card holder less transaction fee 3.79%/$10 minimum without notices.

Payments by credit card online via Google Checkout or PayPal must pass CVV and full AVS verification. If a payment had been accepted by and settled in Google Checkout or PayPal, but AVS did not mach and/or CVV is not passed, then we reserve the right to refund the payment to the credit card holder less transaction fee 3.79%/$10 minimum without notices or request an additional confirmation(s) and/or verification on this payment.

In certain circumstances, even though an online payment had passed CVV and full AVS verification in Google Checkout or PayPal, we keep the right to request an additional confirmation(s) and/or verification on this payment.

Notice: If a shipment had paid by credit card(s) then before issuing a bill of lading we may ask for a confirmation that payer clearly understands that the bill of lading is our final document on this shipment. It is the title on shipped goods and proof on transfer of the ownership on the shipped goods to the consignee in the bill of lading (recipient of shipped goods).

This will confirm that after receiving the bill of lading our service provided is completed as agreed. All parties that may concern of payment(s) on the shipment done by credit card(s) will consider this email the receipt on this payment(s) with payer’s signature in it.

19. Processing shipments upon a copy of check or money order Back to LCL freight | Back to Export from the USA

In order to accelerate a shipment we may proceed with a shipment upon receipt a scanned or faxed copy of check or money order. 

Shipper may fax or email the copy to us. We will confirm receipt of the copy in email. This copy can be considered to be payer's authorization for electronic funds transfer. In event of delay of receiving the original check or money order in mail, typically later than in 5 (five) calendar days after receiving the copy, we reserve rights to process the funds transfer based on the amount and payer’s bank info in copy of the check or money order.

 

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