What happens if your sea freight gets bumped?
21st July 2017
Airfreight is often legitimately bumped
Air freight can be bumped if weather conditions mean the aircraft needs to take on more fuel, for instance flying into a strong headwind. The extra weight of the fuel needs to be balanced, which means air cargo is typically removed to accommodate it. Understandably, higher value freight is often priorotised over low value freight – it’s not personal, nor is it a sales tactic.
Consolidation of container shipping lines - with fewer choices comes higher prices
Sea Freight has been very competitive since the financial crash of 2008/2009, as carriers have slashed prices to fight for container loads. This was unsustainable and with prices crashing it was only a matter of time before things needs to change. In September 2016, the Hanjin Shipping bankruptcy caused turmoil in global sea freight. This set against a frenzy of mergers and alliance’s throughout 2016, the tables have slowly been turning back in the carriers favour.
If Sea Freight gets bumped, it means your agent has got a better price
As the shipping lines have consolidated routes and capacity shrinks in real terms, the competition to book sea freight on popular routes has become more intense. A tactic of the more unscrupulous agents, and we’re talking some of the biggest names in the industry here, start at unrealistically low prices to get volume bookings with the carriers. Then as the timescales shorten, they often resell the same container at a much-increased price.
Bumping low freight-rate cargo for the high freight-rate one
Because your business is dependent upon the cargo, you probably book your container way in advance of the ship setting sail. However, it’s most likely going to be your freight bumped, especially if you get a price which is unbelievably low. Especially if you only have the odd container throughout the course of a year. It doesn’t matter how much you protest – you’ll be faced with trying to get your cargo rebooked and the last minute on a very congested (newly consolidated) route.
Spatial Global promise never to bump your cargo
Because Spatial Global has volume purchasing throughout the year, and we deal direct with the carriers, so your load is safe as soon as we’ve confirmed it. You’ll know the person at Spatial Global who is responsible for your freight and have their direct dial. They will be interested in your cargo, its destination and ensure you are aware of all the information and services needed. Their aim is simple, to ensure your cargo is shipped, landed and delivered to its final destination as efficiently as possible. They manage the whole process (or as much as you choose) on your behalf.
So next time you get a price which is unbelievably low, ask yourself these questions:
Do I have a single point of contact with the agent'
Have they asked enough questions to understand the cargo and possible customs issues'
When I call back, do they remember my consignment, do they remember me'
Have you 100% secured transit with the shipping line'
What happens if this consignment gets bumped'
How will this impact the business'
Is the saving worth the risk'