Understanding the 3 different methods of global shipping

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Development of the global village as we know it wouldn’t be possible without worldwide shipping networks. These helped immensely in shaping today’s world. One doesn’t have to own a multinational business or run foreign affairs to use these international services. Sooner or later, we all need to send something to a different country. The reasons could be various, but the goal is common- fast and secure transportation of goods. But, before sending any valuable item abroad, it could be very useful to learn more about different methods of global shipping.

Three main methods of global shipping

There are numerous ways to transport goods to different countries with international movers. Some are faster than others. Then again, others are much cheaper. It all depends on your needs and preferences. However, in the past centuries, a few of the methods became predominant, mainly because of their highest practical use. These methods are air cargo, shipping by sea, and road courier services. We will try to bring closer to you each of these options.

a plane being loaded with cargo
Air transportation is the fastest among the three main methods of global shipping

Air cargo method of global shipping

  • Time– This is absolutely the fastest way of global shipping. It is suitable for urgent matters. It is your best option when sending paperwork or small parcels to important partners or clients.
  • Distance– Not only it covers any distance, but it also covers it within a minimal time frame. For the ultimate shipping experience, you can opt for door to door international movers
  • Load– Considerable amount of load can be taken at the same time. Still, there are some limitations in the size and composition of the materials that you are sending. Every airline has an extensive list of dangerous goods that are not to be accepted in the cargo. It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with those.
  • Price– Depends on the carrier, but it is normally more expensive than the alternatives, like, for example, sea shipping.
  • Overall score– Overall, this is a highly recommendable shipping method. Especially suitable when it comes to time-saving and distance conquering. The reliability level is also above satisfactory. However, there are some cheaper options out there. Of course, this also depends on the air cargo urgency category you have chosen. The Next Flight Out is the fastest but also the priciest choice among air freight. While Deferred shipment usually means a more affordable option with a longer period of waiting.

Sea shipping

  • Time– Time consumption is the only drawback of this shipping form. But if you are not in such a big rush, this might be the safest and the most effective transportation method.
  • Distance– There is no limitation in the distance when it comes to shipping by water. Every city that has a harbor is within your reach.
  • Load– The main advantage of this cargo arrangement is its load capacity. Vast amounts of goods are transported by the sea daily. In this aspect, sea shipping has no competition. If you are considering international car transportation, for instance, this is probably the most suitable method of global shipping.
  • Price– This way of relocation has one of the best quality-of-service and price ratios.
  • Overall scoreSea shipping makes for the highest percentage of goods shipping in the world. This information says a lot. Even if there are some fastest methods of shipping, nowadays, when it comes to cost-effectiveness and load capacities, this method has no competition.
different methods of global shipping- sea cargo
Sea shipping covers the biggest part of all global transportations

International road courier services

  • Time– This is among the slowest ways of transportation, and it is not suitable for very long distances. Nonetheless, it is more time-effective for the shortest distances than the previous two. This is because it doesn’t include complicated airport or harbor custom procedures.
  • Distance– There are some distance limitations. Of course, not all places in the world have road connections. Some remote islands, for example, are only reachable by sea. Besides, after a certain number of kilometers, road transportation doesn’t payout any longer.
  • Load– Load limitations are there as well. No matter how big of a truck your hire, that truck still takes only a small percentage of a large ship. Not only a load weight but also its category dictates its transportation method.
  • Price– Short-distance relocations are much cheaper if done by road. But long international or intercontinental rides can cost a lot.
  • Overall scoreMoving to New Zealand from the US wouldn’t be possible by road only. Certain segments of the total distance are even better covered this way. However, the total distance can be conquered only by employing combined methods of global shipping. So universal effectiveness of this transportation is not very impressive. But when it comes to local service, it is indisputably the best option. 

Besides these three most popular methods of global shipping, sending your parcels by railroad or riverboats are quite common too. Still, they cover far fewer customers and freight. Local mail distributors use even motorbikes and regular bikes. The options are plenty.

3 cargo trucks
It would be difficult to imagine everyday life without the road courier services

Tailor shipping methods to your own needs

Now that you are more familiar with the three different methods of global shipping, it is worth mentioning that the final choice is always on you. If you find a company that combines several of these methods, you will get the most optimum service. But don’t forget to tailor the shipping method to your own needs. First of all, consider your geographical position and the position of the final destination of the shipment.  Next, roughly calculate all the distances. Consider the time of waiting in every of the transportation scenarios. Do you have that time? Is your business going to suffer? Calculate the final cost with all these expenses combined. Can you afford that, or you need to consider the alternatives as well? And finally, include all the safety factors and all the things that could go wrong on the way.

If you give yourself enough time to consider all these elements of global shipment, for sure, you will be able to choose the best for yourself. Now, all you need to do is to contact a few of the experienced global shippers and compare their offers. Don’t hesitate to ask regarding any doubt you have. And if your situation is unique, ask for professional advice and suggestions. Among so many different methods of global shipping, surely you will be able to find the one just for you.

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