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What is Freight Forwarding?

Many new importers aren’t sure what “Freight Forwarders” are or do and whether if it's important to have one.

To put this in the simplest manner, forwarder is the connection between you and the carrier, broker, trucker, and all other parties involved in your shipment. (Visit the Basic Terms page for details on each party).

Some forwarders only send arrival notices to you and that’s all they’ll do.

Other forwarders do it all, including Customs, drayage, and everything in between.

There are many NVOCC companies out there, the most important thing is to find someone experienced, who is helpful especially when there are problems.

How to Choose a Freight Forwarding Agent?

There are tens of thousands of active Freight Forwarding companies in the United States.

Choosing the right Freight Forwarder can be difficult, so here are a couple of tips to help you determine just that!

1) Are they licensed and bonded? Make sure your freight forwarder provides you with their NVOCC License no. AND their BOND no. if requested. Most Forwarders will have this information on their Arrival Notice.

2) Are they familiar with the commodity that you plan to ship? If you’re planning to ship a vehicle, you want to be sure your Forwarder has the knowledge required to handle vehicle shipping, including loading, special documentation, etc…

3) How easily are they reachable? Do they answer their phones right away? Or do you have to listen to an automated voice system for 5 minutes before pressing 0 only to be transferred to the receptionist?

4) Do they have a support network within the areas you plan to ship from and to? Some companies specialize in global shipping, some cross-state, and some interstate. Find a Forwarder who has knowledge of your locations.


Disclaimer: Please note that all information provided in this post is for reference purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. It is recommended that you consult with a qualified professional for specific inquiries or concerns. This website is not comprehensive and does not encompass all the necessary aspects of import procedures. 

If you require Customs Brokerage assistance, contact our main company, Elleo Global today!



a subdivision of Elleo Global, Inc.

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