Our LCL program has always been an inherent solution to keeping up with on-demand freight needs. Now more than ever, with the constriction of the supply chain, ordering smaller amounts, more frequently optimizes just-in-time inventory and maximizes cash flow. We are currently offering a 10% discount on our LCL rates and a flat $800 per container discount per FCL container.
Previously we warned about the possibility of “emergency charges” from our freight partners. We have now have been informed these will take place. However, the falling cost of oil has led to a reduction in fuel surcharges, which offsets the emergency charges, so there is no price change to our rates at this time. FCL prices continue to be custom quotes.
Ocean Freight from Europe
Major carriers have started introducing sailing service changes. Overall cargo volumes are declining, so we are starting to see blank sailings (canceled sailings) on the transatlantic routes which reduce the amount of capacity available, from both Northern European and Mediterranean ports. Additionally, while most of our freight partners are operational, safety instructions require distancing and sanitization that delay operations and shorten hours of operation.
- Expect longer lead times
- The industry continues to experience a shortage of reefer container equipment
- US ports are open but are experiencing similar operational challenges due to safety restrictions as well as a pile up of non-essential goods
- Many suppliers have reduced hours of operation, making collections challenging
- Due to the upcoming holidays, many suppliers are shutting down for weeks at a time
France – Upcoming Bank Holidays
Be prepared for some additional scheduling disruptions around the bank holiday in France which are:
- Monday, April 13th
- Friday, May 1st
- Friday, May 8th
- Thursday, May 21st
- Monday, June 1st
How to Plan
We encourage you to prepare for longer than usual scheduling times to work around holidays, supplier availability and bookings. Reefer containers are more limited than usual, so we will present opportunities for insulated shipments on an as needed basis, giving you the option of shipping insulated vs waiting for reefer. Insulated shipments carry a reduction of $0.80 per case vs reefer.
We have added a credit card option to make freight invoice payments more convenient. If you have not tried our FX service, we offer cost-effective Foreign Exchange options for supplier payments.
In general, the overwhelming majority of suppliers are operational, but many are adjusting collection times or requiring appointments which can affect the scheduling of multi-stop loads. In France, roughly 100 suppliers (less than 1%) have either closed or reduced pickup times, but we expect to see more facilities reopen after the Easter holidays.
We continue to work safely and remotely and are here to support you.