4 Factors to Consider When Choosing an International Shipping Method

The internet and e-commerce have created a global marketplace where international shipping is needed more now than ever before. Thanks to advances in logistics, it's possible to get materials from one place to where it's needed in another country, almost anywhere on Earth. However, with so many transportation options, business owners need to think carefully about what's the smartest way to ship their international goods. At Limco Logistics, we work with all methods of international shipping, so we can help business owners make the right choice. Here are four factors to consider when choosing an international shipping method.

Time

There are many differences between the various methods of international shipping, but the most relevant difference is time.  A plane is considerably faster than any other form of international shipping, and if you need your product to get somewhere as soon as possible, air travel is usually the way to go. However, these flights can be more expensive than other forms of international shipping, so it's generally better to choose another method if there are fewer time constraints. Certain goods need to reach their destination as soon as possible, such as items that are perishable or materials required for a Just-In-Time operation that can't wait longer than necessary for the part they need. Limco Logistics can help you understand shipping time tables so you can choose the methods that will get your goods where they need to be at the proper time.

Terrain

International shipping covers a lot of different actions. Depending on where you are in the world, your international destination might be a few hours drive away, on the other side of a mountain range, across a body of water, or on the other side of the world. The terrain your goods need to travel plays a significant role in deciding which options you can use. If you need to get something from Europe to the United States, your only options are using a plane or a ship. Similarly, if you need to cut through a densely populated area, it's probably quicker to use a railroad to transport your materials rather than have a truck waste time stuck in traffic.

Size

The size of your cargo will play a significant role in deciding what international shipping method you use. Shipping companies charge by weight, and trying to send weighty cargo through certain methods can be prohibitively expensive. Airplanes have limits to how much weight they can carry. While certain planes exist that can take over-sized shipments, they are costly to use and best reserved for emergency situations. If you need to send containers of goods overseas, it's best to ship items over the water than pay the high cost to send it by air. Similarly, the dimensions of trucks place size and weight constraints on what can be sent on commercial vehicles. If you need to send something overland, but it's too large for a truck, a train is your only option if you want to send it in one trip. Limco Logistics can help businesses plan their international shipping, so they have more options for which method to use.

Cost

As with most things in business, cost concerns play a significant role in determining which shipping method a company can use. Often, the fastest way to ship an item internationally is so expensive that it makes the transaction unprofitable for the shipper. Even if you pass the cost onto the consumer, they will balk at the high price. Business owners need to balance the cost of shipping with the time it’ll take for goods to reach their destination. Limco Logistics can help business owners find the most appropriate international shipping method for their operation.

If you need help shipping goods anywhere around the world, Limco Logistics can help. Send us a message online to schedule a consultation where we’ll discuss the needs of your business.

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