Every time you will ship your cargo, you will need to choose between the two types of containers that are available in the shipping industry. It is one of the most crucial decisions to make as the safety of your freight, its shipping cost and your profit margin are all dependent upon it. Freight forwarders charge different prices for both LCL (Less than Container Load) and FCL (Full Container Load) containers. In most of the cases, the importers do not bother about the shipping container. So, you cannot make changes to the final quote of your shipping contract and the sum you will get for it. Therefore, you must have a standard idea of when you have to opt for an LCL container and when you should go with the FCL container.
The thumb rule for choosing Shipping Containers
A lot of traders find themselves in a loop while deciding which container to choose for shipping the cargo. This dilemma arises because they tend to follow general advice and theories that prevail in the market. Every trader and shipper will ask you to choose the container that they believe is perfect for shipment. You should neither commit the same mistake nor drive your decisions based on personal opinions.
The thumb rule for choosing a shipping container is calculating the weight and size of the cargo. When cargo is small and lightweight, you must opt for an LCL container for shipping. Since the freight charge of LCL shipments depends on the CBM (Cubic Meter) value of the cargo, the lighter it weighs, the cheaper it costs. It would help if you did not store your freight shipments until the bulk is enough for FCL shipments. Many companies prefer to select the first choice to cargo ships and reasons behind, i.e., there are no extra overburden charges against that. It is one type of saving from sailors onboard.
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LCL vs FCL: Know the Difference
The size of an LCL container is mostly similar to that of FCL. The difference lies in the shipping pattern and process. An LCL container carries small cargoes of several traders while the FCL containers are for one trader’s use only. Your decision should depend on factual and logical data and not on the little advice of others. Have a look at some other factors that you can evaluate for making a profitable decision.
- Cost of Shipment – An LCL container will be cheaper than FCL for shipping light goods. Clothing, Plastic, raw materials, medicines, etc. are some of the examples that do not weigh much. An FCL container is cheaper only when you have a bulk cargo of an importer with a single delivery destination.
- Shipping Route – LCL shipments usually cover smaller shipping routes and connect more number of ports along the way. If you can get a clear idea of the most active shipping routes, it will become comfortable paper, easier and faster to ship your cargo using an LCL container.
- Frequency – LCL shipments are more frequent than FCL. It would be best if you chose an LCL container over FCL when your client needs the cargo urgently. A few traders tend to coerce their clients until they have enough bulk and end up losing their goodwill in the market. It would be best if you did not ride the same boat.
- Inventory Control – If you do not have your private extended house or godown, storing goods for a long period can cost you more than you calculate. Inventory control is an aspect that many traders tend to ignore. However, in the vast run, the cost of inventory can make a massive difference in the profit margin.
In a trading business, small decisions like choosing a container or selecting a shipping partner are vital infobox profits. Now that you know which box to choose, you should make a wise choice of your logistics service provider. The rule is that trading with other nations carries on behalf of the official international trade agreement under legal formalities through water, land or airways. Please try to follow this to save you from unguaranteed future disasters.