Weekly Update Week 21: May 24th – 28th

Operations Update


Memorial Day Closures

Plan ahead for US Memorial Day holiday closures (Monday, May 31st, 2021) at the port terminals and allow for extra time handling the ISF customs filing requirements on imports.

We will be processing orders on Friday, 5/28 for delivery Tuesday, 6/1.

Freight Rates

Freight rates have resumed their upward trend, other parts of the supply chain also continue to see pricing pressure, in particular, drayage, trucking, and warehousing.

Ocean freight providers are signalling additional price increases for Q2 and Q3.

Updated Port Waiting Times:

  • Oakland: 15 – 20 days

  • Long Beach:  6 – 13 days

  • Seattle: 4 days

  • New York/New Jersey: Up to 3 days

The Connection Between Congestion and Capacity

US West Coast ports show a clear example of the domino effect of port congestion.  Vessels have been queued up outside the port to berth, and each vessel stays longer in port as labor is restricted to 4 gangs for large vessels at LA/Long Beach, and 2 gangs per vessel at Oakland for most shifts.  Without any break in vessel arrivals, all terminal activity gets backed up – container movements (inbound/outbound), chassis supply, gate operations, rail connections, and more.

This port congestion in turn continues to impact ocean carrier operations and schedules.  When all the vessels in a scheduled rotation are delayed on their multiple stops, this prevents them from returning to the origin (Asia for a lot of West Coast calls) to meet the next rotational departure.

To realign schedules, carriers remove or “slide” one or more planned sailings.  This adds to the volume of rolled (overbooked) containers that do not make the intended vessel.  Therefore, each consecutive vessel has less capacity because they need to take on the rolled cargo.  This also takes more container equipment out of circulation with the delay.  Typically, each “slide” sailing will take the next four weeks to resolve the backlog of cargo.


The Freight carriers are now predicting disrupted schedules for at least the next 6 months.  We continue to advise our customers to order in plenty of time, in particular, for France customers should allow an extra 6 -8 weeks.

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