With time, international shipping has been gaining pace at an increasing rate. The distance between people and countries has been reduced to only some days through international shipping or import and export of goods and services. The fastest way to send the parcel is through the air and it has been one of the preferred means for the people.
Though international shipping seems easy, when it comes to small or medium-sized businesses, then the realisation of the paperwork, documents, and all the process that takes place strikes in an instant concern. International shipping might be more on the expensive side, but for small and medium-scale businesses, it is crucial to have access to international shipping to grow and increase revenue. After understanding the rules and regulations, and the required paperwork, the process becomes a little easier as compared to the first time.
Before shipping, it is important to understand the steps. So, the following are the five steps to know before international shipping for the first time.
Step 1- What and Where?
As silly as it might sound but knowing what exactly you are shipping is of prime importance. There are custom forms that need to be filled for the non-document shipments across the border and the item should be clearly and completely declared. Now, wondering why this step is so important? To be precise, being clear about the shipments allows the customs officials to classify the shipments, making the process of shipping easier and faster. Furthermore, appropriate information about the units or the quantity of the products is equally essential. Also, sometimes the details of the manufacturer may be different from the shipping place, so proper information about the same is also required.
Moving on to the next question, the importance of knowing ‘Where to ship?’. Some countries are easier to ship to while others have specific rules and regulations that makes the process taxing. Countries like Canada and Mexico, receive the maximum amount of shipments due to the ease in the documents and getting into the market. Gather complete information about the rules and regulations of importing and exporting products of various or targeted countries, to avoid any sort of confusion or interference.
Step 2- Finding a courier
It is one of the crucial steps required in international shipping - to find a courier. Finding an efficient and cost-effective courier service would need some research, especially for small and medium-scale businesses. Large business houses like Amazon have started their own courier services to ensure that the product reaches in proper condition and on time. The steps for finding a courier service are:
Step 3- Documentation and Taxes
No matter how easy international shipping may seem, there are still steps that cannot be skipped in any way. Complete documents are demanded the shipping to take place. There are certain documents that are essential, including:
Step 4- Customs Clearance
When it comes to customs, every country has its own set of rules and regulations. The customs are cleared without any hassle if the documents are complete and authentic. Moreover, the freight forwarders or carrier services also assist in customs clearance. The customs official goes through the paperwork provided by the seller and the assessment of import duties and taxes take place, depending on the type of goods and their value. In some cases, taxes are applicable for clearance of customs and once all the duties and taxes are paid, the customs are cleared and the shipment is delivered to its desired destination.
Step 5- Tracking Shipment Activities
The final step of the shipment is its delivery. Once the shipment is delivered in proper condition, both parties consider the shipping process as a success. With the advancement of technology, tracking or shipments have comparatively become easier. Continuous updates and notifications are provided to the seller as well as the customer to increase transparency. Moreover, the seller also gets information about the route and time consumed during the shipment.
These are the five basic steps to know before initiating international shipping for the first time. As a freight forwarder or a carrier agency, it becomes challenging to manage and keep a track of the entire process. So, to ensure smooth functioning, Cargoflash provides solutions effective for the management of revenue as well as taking care of the reservation of the slots of the shipments. These solutions are technologically advanced with productive management and lesser human interference.