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A freight forwarder is a party or a company that acts as the agent of the cargo owner. They can further describe as the companies specialized in providing logistics services to their customers. Also, name as international freight forwarders or freight brokers, or simply forwarders. These agents are third-party Logistics service providers to the manufacturing or cargo distributing companies.
Freight forwarders generally have networks of offices around the world. These freight brokers in different locations may belong to the same group of companies. Or they could be different companies that mutually agreed to work together as they do not have their own network to cover the freight forwarding work in different countries.
Having a network helps them to cater to the demand of their customers in different countries without limiting their business. The more the network, the more they become strong players in the freight forwarding industry. Shippers and consignees find it very easy to work with freight brokers as they have a network of agencies in other countries.
The freight brokers do all the communications related to the cargo moving from origin to destination. So the shipper and consignee don’t have to worry about the logistics arrangements of their goods. Once the goods are handed over to the forwarder at the origin, they make sure to deliver the goods to the agreed destination.
Some shipping lines have their own freight forwarding companies to facilitate international trade and increase their control in the logistics industry and enhance customer satisfaction.
for example, A.P. Moller Maersk has merged with Damco to provide freight forwarding facilities by the Maersk group.
What are the Freight Forwarding Services?
Some of the services of freight agents are as below. Every agent may not provide all the services. But in general bellow services are available.
- Assist cargo owner to move goods from one place to another
- Negotiate freight rates and make sure to allocate space from a carrier
- Cargo packing/palletising
- Provide warehousing facility
- Track cargo on the cargo owners behalf
- Arrange/Provide inland transportation as appropriate
- Handle export-import documentation
- CusDec preparation and Cargo Clearance
Do Freight Broker and Customs Broker are Same?
They are not the same. But freight brokers can be customs brokers while customs brokers cannot be freight brokers. Freight forwarding is a vast area. It includes a lot of job roles. The customs broker’s job role is limited yet vital in the logistics industry.
The Importance of Freight Forwarders
As they are always at your service you may have not identified their importance. Having reliable freight brokers for your business will smooth the supply chain of your cargo. As freight brokers take care of the goods from the shipper’s doorstep to the consignee’s doorstep trustworthy freight brokers become partners to the company nowadays.
What is the Freight Forwarder’s Cargo Receipt?
The freight forwarder’s cargo receipt is a document. Commonly known as “FCR”. This document act as an acceptance by the forwarder on safe receipt of cargo. The document is issued to the cargo owner or the shipper
Are you Curious on FIATA?
FIATA stands for the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Association. It is the non-governmental world body representing freight brokers.
At the country level, freight agents have associations to raise their voice and all country-level associations become members of FIATA to have a loud voice around the world.
For more information on FIATA. Please visit
Is Freight Forwarder and NVOCC are same?
They are not the same and most people think they are the same. Their responsibilities differ and have different roles before the law. Please read on NVOCC to identify their role.
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