In an effort to contain the COVID-19 spread, global passenger aircraft flights have been suspended, thus reducing air cargo capacity. One internet report suggests that China’s air cargo capacity has fallen by over 30%. In such a scenario, customers are looking at ocean freight as a viable option. Ocean freight can help reduce stress on the air freight supply-demand situation currently prevailing in some sectors at the moment.
Moreover, continuing restrictions on air movement translate into unforeseen delays. Already, air freight rates have spiked, and may go up even further. Companies need to look holistically at ocean freight which, because it offers more capacity, can prove to be cost-effective. With ECU Worldwide, businesses have at their service, a global network operating via more than 300 offices in over 160 countries and offering services across more than 2,400 direct trade lanes for Less than Container Load (LCL) transportation with door-to-door delivery in over 40 countries.
Ocean freight dynamics
Ocean freight transport has its twin advantages of more capacity and cost-effectiveness but before a choice is made, customers must consider that ocean freight may take considerably more time than air freight depending on the final destination and so one requires crucial support from the logistics service provider. Also, a different set of safety and security compliance protocols come into play, which need to be adhered to. Partnering with a capable logistics services provider is critical for seamless handling of the documentation, container clogging, or any other challenges that might be faced at ports.
Considering these customer requirements, and in view of the fact that China is gradually opening up for business, there is a need for an express service that ensures swift, safe and effective delivery from China to other parts of the world. With many states in USA along with certain European countries still being in various stages of a lockdown, a seamless service where customs and other formalities are handled by local teams supported by a global network can really ensure peace of mind for customers.
XLERATE: Leveraging the combination of ocean, express in bond trucking and air freight
As companies evaluate alternatives to air freight, XLERATE is a perfect service for businesses that seek timely, cost-effective LCL consolidation from all the major ports of China – Shanghai, Ningbo, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Xiamen, Hong Kong and Qingdao – to Los Angeles. XLERATE adds an express inland service to Newark, New Jersey, Chicago, Miami , and 4 additional key inland CFS locations in the USA. XLERATE also further extends into offering SEA – AIR services via Los Angeles to over 30 airports in Europe and via Miami Airport to 15 airports in Latin America. Through this combination of SEA-AIR cargo can be transported from China to Europe and Latin America via Los Angeles in as fast as 14 days.
With the total cost being approximately one fourth of the cost of air freight from China to Europe, even financially, XLERATE emerges as the perfect option for companies looking to improve the cost-effectiveness of their logistics operations.
Through XLERATE, ECU Worldwide has partnered with Matson CLX service to offer CY CY 10 days on the Shanghai to Los Angeles route, and CY CY 12 days on the Ningbo to Los Angeles route which are market leading transit times. From Qingdao, Xiamen, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong the XLERATE product will utilise the services of APL with their “GET” express terminal services. These unique CY to CY express services offer some of the fastest port to port transit times coupled with under 24 hour terminal gate out times at the port of Los Angeles. The XLERATE containers are offloaded at the bonded CFS of ECU Worldwide in Los Angeles 24 hours after the vessels’ scheduled Sunday arrival for Matson origins and 24 hours after the Wednesday vessel arrival for the APL origins. ECU Worldwide further combines the market-leading CFS to CFS U.S. Domestic service with its Bonded IPI/ Express Team Driver Truck service that departs from its Los Angeles Import Ocean CFS every Monday night for Ningbo and Shanghai and every Thursday for the remaining China origins. This provides express team driver CFS to CFS services to 7 Inland CFS locations across the eastern half of the USA. XLERATE customers are able to clear their goods at the destination CFS and then manage the final delivery with their regular local delivery provider. With many companies in USA having restricted cargo receiving times and appointments, allowing our freight forwarding customers to control the final mile delivery builds flexibility into the delivery and leaves it in local hands.
A simplified per kilo rate that is all-inclusive from FOB origin port to pick-up from the final destination CFS in USA, helps customers control final mile delivery with the benefit of an expedited and reliable LCL service with a simplified rate format. It makes the cargo transportation process a lot more convenient. “With XLERATE, we have really stepped up our game. The service was launched as a response to our customers’ requirements and the bookings we are getting have proved that this is a step in the right direction. Our customer-centricity has made sure our customers can now get reliable, cost-effective and timely sea-air services from six main base ports in China to over 30 airports in Europe, with transit times as little as 14 days to 23 days depending on the origin China Port to the destination European Airport ,” says Spencer Strader, Director Imports, ECU Worldwide.
Cutting edge technology
At ECU Worldwide, businesses have the additional benefit of digital tools and technology to make transportation via ocean freight convenient and easy, along with capabilities to track and trace cargo at every stage. With ECU360, a state-of-the-art online platform, customers can conduct business 24×7. Its features like quick quotes, convenient cargo booking, sailing schedules, and access to all important information at one go enable independent transactions and business continuity for customers.
“We, here at ECU Worldwide, are adept at handling diverse types of cargo, and our team of expert professionals can provide assistance and advisory on a gamut of services to keep your business moving even in these challenging times,” says Tim Tudor, CEO, ECU Worldwide. Companies want to rely on a partner like ECU Worldwide who understands their business goals and objectives and offers customised cargo transportation solutions to achieve them.
At ECU Worldwide, solutions are tailored to meet the customer’s business supply chain and processes ensure effective transportation solutions, right from the point an item is loaded on a freighter till it’s unloaded at its destination port. Compliance to requisite safety standards and protocol as well as capabilities to handle hazardous cargo or even medical equipment and devices make ECU Worldwide a trusted ocean freight partner, especially in these trying times.
As more and more businesses opt for ocean freight to tackle the challenges of reduced air freight capacity, with services like XLERATE ECU Worldwide is geared up to offer efficient and timely cargo transportation along with the assurance that all the necessary health and safety precautions are followed by its teams and implemented in its facilities across the world.