What is a Freight Forwarding

The freight forwarding business is a vital part of the transportation industry. In our blog post, we talk about what is freight forwarding and who are the people behind the process. Feel free to check it out.


What is a Freight Forwarding


What is a Freight Forwarding Process: The Main Principles

The freight forwarding process is a combination of coordination and freight shipping. It may include multiple carrier companies and transportation methods.

The main principle of freight forwarding is cost-efficient transportation of goods and maintaining their condition throughout the whole travel. A freight forwarding company must become a pro in logistics management to fully meet all clients’ needs. Also, they need to expand their relationship with different carriers and have the right tools for any task accomplishment.

What Does a Freight Forwarder Do to Navigate the Freight

By gathering required knowledge, skills, and building up a good partner network, freight forwarders ensure successful relocation and delivery of any goods. Safe and timely delivery of freight is the key, so the freight forwarder should gather trusted companies to work with.

Tariff negotiations, customs regulations, and being able to build effective shipping routes, regardless of the transportation type. In addition to that, freight forwarder companies need to manage all the risks and benefits of national and international shipping.

Role of a Freight Forwarder: Taking Part in Supply Chain

The role of a freight forwarder can be defined by things they do throughout the day. Here’s the list:

  • Cargo space scheduling
  • Freight consolidation
  • Brokerage
  • Negotiations
  • Freight tracking
  • Freight insurance
  • Warehousing

To be able to perform all these tasks, a skillful forwarder is required to have:

  • Knowledge of all shipping standards and protocols that may be different from country to country (port to port)
  • Flexible problem-solving mechanisms, regardless of what or who caused it, weather, human, or technology
  • Ability to build a strong network of contacts because the supply chain depends on it.

Freight Forwarder Examples: How it Works

Imagine a US-based company but with offices in other countries. The company has a few manufacturing facilities around the US, and they have to ship goods constantly to other locations. They hire a freight forwarder company located in North Carolina to take care of the logistics. That company takes all the shipments from the client’s company and distributes them properly among all the branches.

For international shipment, freight forwarders gather the products at their own warehouse in NC, and from there continue to ship to other countries where the client\’s business is located. Working with a freight forwarder company might be expensive; however, you take off lots of work and routine with logistics from your business.

What is a Forwarding Agent: The People Behind the Process

A forwarding agent is a person that works in a freight forwarding company and directly works with your business. Agent organizes safe, timely, and cost-efficient transportation of client’s goods.

The main responsibilities of a forwarding agent are finding transport, picking the best route, providing insurance, choosing the right packaging, and the storage/distribution process.

Freight Forwarding Services Meaning: Main Definitions

Freight forwarding is a complex of supply chain services that are designed to ensure proper cargo delivery. The list of services may include:

  • Freight transportation by ocean or air
  • Freight transportation by land rail/road
  • Documentation routine
  • Warehousing and storage service
  • Consolidation and negotiations
  • Insurance

Freight forwarding service makes the whole export/import process much easier and less stressful.

What Does a Freight Forwarding Company Do

Freight forwarding companies are not the ones who move your cargo. They are intermediaries and stand between you (a customer) and an actual shipping company.

Freight forwarders utilize their resources and relationships to get you the lowest transportation cost and the best route. They are also responsible for every logistics process required for international shipping, which is a complex and hard job.

What is the Difference Between Logistics and Freight Forwarding

Freight forwarding companies cooperate with logistics companies and don’t actually take part in cargo transportation. Forwarders are more experienced in finding carriers who are specialized in specific transportation services. They also work with documentation, while logistics companies do it rarely.

Logistics companies, on the other hand, have their own resources to perform any kind of transportation service. However, they don’t have specific shipping routes. Carriers mostly work in niche fields like long hauls, oversized, dry van, reefer, etc.


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