Freight rates are the charges at which cargo is transported from one place to another. The term freight is commonly used for goods transported in bulk. Ocean, air and rail are the most used modes of transportation for bulk cargo.
What factors influence freight rates?
Various factors such as the mode of transportation, distance to be traveled, type of cargo and the weight of cargo can lead to an increase or decrease of freight rates.
What factors influence the calculation of sea freight rates?
The calculation of sea freight rates depends on the following factors:
Cost of handling and clearing the goods at the port of loading and port of discharge.
Type of container – whether it is FCL (full container load) or LCL (less than container load).
How are freight rates calculated?
Freight rate or freight quotations mostly consist of the following freight and surcharge items:
Basic charge/rate of ocean freight.
Terminal handling charges – container handling at the port & consolidation warehouse.
Surcharges for additional security measures that are imposed by the carrier.
Surcharges due to increased demand or other economical factors
Bunker adjustment factor or fuel surcharge for sea transport.
Hedging of currency exchange risk.
(Note: These are most of the charges included in the calculation of freight rates while shipping under CFR incoterm.)
Why do different freight forwarders quote different rates for the same consignment?
This happens because freight forwarders sometimes leave out additional charges while sending their customers quotes. For instance, Freight Forwarder A may quote a final rate that includes the basic freight rate and all other charges while Freight Forwarder B may quote just the basic freight rate and add the other charges later. To avoid being hit with such hidden charges later, you must always ask your freight forwarder or service provider for the final “landing cost”.
Why do freight rates change so often?
Freight rates are dependent on market forces of supply and demand. Macroeconomic factors such as fluctuations in the price of oil, the exchange rate and inflation can also directly or indirectly influence freight rates.
Book & manage shipments related questions
Will I get confirmed space and equipment inventory against my booking?
Some rate cards feature services that guarantee space and equipment inventory for your consignment, often at a higher price. For other rate cards, vessel space and equipment inventory are subject to availability depending on multiple factors. However, be assured, we will provide you with a confirmation as early as possible.
What happens if a supplier cancels the booking?
The booking will be sent to another forwarder at the rate initially selected by you. In case no forwarder accepts that rate, Cogoport regrets that the shippers will have to replace the booking at a revised rate.
How much time does it take to process the booking note (B/N)? or How long does it take for a booking to be confirmed?
Each supplier commits to a booking note turnaround time. Alongside similarly important information, this is included on the rate card for your consideration when selecting a service provider.
I am not very familiar with online businesses. Can I do an offline booking?
Cogoport is an online platform that is very easy to use. A booking can be done in less than 60 seconds. If you shop on online platforms such as Amazon or Flipkart, you can use Cogoport with ease. To help you along, we have a dedicated support team that will be happy to walk you through the entire booking process.
How do I cancel a booking?
The booking can only be cancelled before container pickup. In order to cancel your booking, you will have an option to cancel the booking.
Are there any cancellation charges?
There are no cancellation charges as of now. However, the cancellation charges might be applicable in case of Spot bookings and some of the congested ports. Rest assured, Cogoport will display the cancellation charges, if applicable while making the booking.
Shipping related questions
What is a bill of lading?
A bill of lading (B/L or BoL) is a legal document issued by a carrier to a shipper. It contains the details of the type, quantity, and destination of the goods that are being carried. A bill of lading also serves as a receipt for the shipment when the goods are delivered at the destination.
Which documents are required for customs clearance?
The documents required for customs clearance are as follows:
Bill of entry
Bill of lading/airway bill
Import / Export license
Purchase order/ Letter of Credit
Technical write up, literature etc. for any specific goods if any
Industrial license if any
Registration cum membership certificate (RCMC) if any
Test report if any
DEEC/DEPB /ECGC or any other documents for duty benefits
Central excise document if any
If you mention all the details of your shipment, we can guide you through the process. For further assistance, please contact us.
Are my data and documents secure?
Your data is absolutely safe with us. All data captured on Cogoport is hosted on servers run by Amazon Web Services – known for its integrity and security. At Amazon, all data have back-ups in case of any technical malfunctions.
Finances related questions
When should I use Cogoport’s ‘Pay Later’ service?
You should manage your cash wisely. Having credit of 120 days will give you more cash in hand, which you can use to increase production and grow your business. Whenever you want cash for this, you can avail up to 120 days of credit from us.
When should I pay for freight in USD?
Ocean freight is primarily paid in USD. So when you pay for your freight in USD, you save on currency conversion charges. This is particularly advisable if you have a consignment whose monetary value is high.
How do I pay an invoice?
You can pay invoices via bank transfers. You can also use the international money transfer facility available on our website.
What are the various payment terms available?
You can choose to pay against documents and avail a special discount. You could also choose to defer payment by availing of our 120-day ‘Pay Later’ credit facility.
Can I invite my finance team to Cogoport?
Yes, you can invite them to join Cogoport and give them access to your finance profile.
FCL Shipments related questions
What is FCL shipment?
FCL or full container load is a type of shipment where an entire container is used by a single importer/exporter for the transportation of goods.
Which are the most popular types of FCL containers available?
The most popular type of FCL containers available are:
20 foot: Dimensions - 20ft x 8ft x 8ft 6in
40 foot: Dimensions - 40ft x 8 ft x 8ft 6in
40 foot-high cube: Dimensions - 40ft x 8ft x 9ft 6in
Note: The dimensions are length x breadth x height
When should I opt for FCL shipment?
You should opt for FCL shipment in the following cases:
When your cargo weight is more than 10MT: FCL shipment rates in such a case could be lower than LCL (less than container load) shipment
When your shipment is urgent: With FCL shipments you save time that is taken for consolidating an LCL shipment.
When you want your cargo safe: In FCL, you have the entire container to yourself, hence minimising the damage that can occur when your cargo comes into contact with cargo of another shipment.
How should I book my FCL shipment?
Follow these few simple steps on our website:
Go to ‘Discover Rates’
Fill in your requirements
Click on ‘Search’
Search for the best suited rate for your shipment
Select you payment terms and billing address
Click on ‘Book Now’
Trucking & rail related questions
Are rail haulage services available on Cogoport?
Yes, Cogoport provides rail haulage solutions through various partnerships it has with both private and public rail operators.
How soon can I expect a truck to be booked for my cargo?
A truck is booked for you as soon as you book a trucking service with a service provider on Cogoport.
If I choose a trucking service will I be charged for transporting my cargo for one way or both ways?
It depends on where your goods are loaded (stuffed) into the container. If you opt for dock stuffing (when your cargo is loaded into a container at the docks), you pay for only one way – for transportation from your factory/warehouse to the port of loading. However, if you choose factory stuffing (when your cargo is loaded into a container at your factory/warehouse and then transported to the port) you are charged for both ways as the empty container will first be picked up from the container yard, delivered to your factory/warehouse and then taken to the port.
Customs related questions
What kind of certificates are taken care of via Cogoport?
CHAs available on the Cogoport platform can help you get all the necessary documents related to exports. They also provide essential documents like:
VGM certificate and others
What kind of clearances are taken care of via Cogoport?
CHAs available on the Cogoport platform can help you with various clearance services:
On wheels clearance
How will I coordinate with my Customs House Agent (CHA)?
You can directly call our 24x7 customer support number or your dedicated account manager who will place your request with your CHA. In addition to that, you can also update your comments at the bookings page.
Can I ask for certificates after placing the booking?
Yes, if you have already made a booking on Cogoport, you can always place a request for certificates by calling your dedicated account manager. We will then email you a confirmation of costs for the certificates you require.
Pay Later related questions
Why should I opt for up to 120 days of credit?
Opting for Cogoport’s ‘Pay Later’ service that grants you up to 120 days of credit will help you maintain healthy cash flow. This, in turn, will allow you to divert the capital to increase your production
How can I avail of Cogoport’s 120 days of credit?
To avail of our ‘Pay Later’ service, apply online through the Cogoport portal. We will ask you for some basic documents so that we can conduct a credit check. This process will be completed in less than 48 hours.
What is the cost of availing 120 credit days?
In order to avail 120 days of credit, we charge a service fee around 1%-1.5%, which is flexible depending on your payment history. We do not charge a prepayment penalty.
Logistics provider related questions
Can I provide freight forwarding services on Cogoport?
Yes, you can provide freight forwarding services on Cogoport by registering yourself as a service provider. Once you sign up and complete the verification process, our supplier team will access your eligibility and contact you to explain how you can provide your services to customers.
Can I provide transportation services on Cogoport?
Yes, you can provide transportation services such as FTL (Full Truck Load) and trailer services on Cogoport after registering and completing your verification process.
Can I provide customs service to Cogoport? How can one register as a CHA service provider?
Yes, you can provide Custom House Agent services on Cogoport. You will have to register on Cogoport as a service provider and complete the verification process. Once our team verifies your credentials, they will let you know how you can start providing customs clearance services to customers.
Can I provide clearance for HazMat and Reefer cargo on Cogoport?
Yes, you can provide clearance for HazMat or Reefer cargo on Cogoport. You will have to register with us as a service provider and complete the verification process. Once our team verifies your documents, our supplier relations team will get in touch with you to explain what you need to do next.
Can I work with my existing customers on Cogoport? Do you charge a convenience fee for this?
Yes, you can work with your existing customers exclusively on Cogoport. You can do this by treating Cogoport as a software to manage your work. We have different monetisation structures for different types of suppliers. To know more, get in touch with us.
What benefits do I get if I sign up with Cogoport
There are three primary benefits of joining Cogoport:
It’s free to join Cogoport and you can use all our features and tools to better serve your current and new customers.
We help you to give your customers credit for their shipments so that you don’t have to worry about it.
We pay you instantly through our invoice factoring feature.