September 29, 2022
Demand Forecasting Guide for Supply Chain
The global supply chain industry is evolving, with customers requiring faster speed-to-market, end-to-end visibility across multi-modal supply chains. Within...
Air Shipping accounts for approximately 35% of global trade value, with businesses often considering it a viable option to transport high-value and low-volume shipments. As a trade facilitator, there is more than one reason to opt for this freight forwarding option. Let’s deep dive into these reasons:
If you want to transport goods in a speedy and timely manner, then hands down, freight by air is the best option. Known as the fastest shipping method, airfreight is generally preferred over ocean, road or rail transport for moving time-sensitive goods.
|For Example : If you shipped goods from Shanghai to Melbourne by sea, it would take 18-21 days door to door, i.e. origin warehouse to the destination. However, if they were shipped by air, door to door, it would take just three or four days.
Note: Information pertains to normal circumstances and does not take into consideration delays due to unforeseen circumstances like natural disasters, global pandemics, civil disorders, etc.
As an importer or exporter, the decision between waiting more than a month for the goods to arrive by sea as opposed to a couple of days for air shipment purely depends on the nature of the business and the urgency of the goods. Further, the nature of freight by air and the smaller aircraft sizes compared to shipping containers, mean the cargo are smaller. This leads to quicker and more efficient packing and unpacking.
For these reasons, air cargo shipping was the preferred alternative during the COVID-19 crisis to expedite the delivery of essential goods such as medicines, medical equipment, masks, vaccinations, etc.
The predictability and stringency of airline arrival and departure schedules make it greatly reliable and suitable for high-value goods with a small margin of error or delay in delivery. For instance, if you were to ship goods by sea and missed the cutoff at the port, your goods will be delayed while awaiting the next opportunity to load. However, with air shipping, if you were unable to get your goods on a particular flight, under normal circumstances there will be other hourly and daily flights between all the major cities of the world.
Nevertheless, it is expected that once pandemic-driven disruptions cease, the air shipping industry will return to its normal levels of reliability.
For some companies, a delay of a day or two would not hurt their business; however, for others, the delay may result in considerable disruption and unwanted costs. To address these concerns, an air shipping company often offers overnight or same-day delivery capabilities depending on the location. This has allowed air freight shipping to be generally considered the more reliable alternative for when delivery time is of the utmost importance.
During the pandemic, this capability was hindered by the grounding of many passenger flights, which in turn reduced the airlines’ ability to offer frequent air shipping schedules. It is expected that this issue will ease along with the travel restrictions after the pandemic. Before opting for air shipping, consider questions such as: Where is the shipment being delivered? How urgent is the shipment? Are you shipping during peak season?
We touched upon saving time through air freight shipping, but in the same vein, when goods are shipped by air, it translates to efficiency in warehousing and packaging. Thanks to technological advancements in the shipping and logistics industry, processes such as customs clearance, cargo handling and inspection have become streamlined.
Air cargo generally comprises smaller sized packages and weighs lesser than other transport mediums. This makes unloading quicker, helps meet the stringent airline schedules and reduces overall lead times. The compact parcels help cut down on warehousing and packaging costs as well as ensure the longevity of the goods. Hence, the comparatively short air cargo shipping time helps cut down these costs bringing about efficiency in costs as well.
Due to the various benefits of speed, reliability, efficiency, etc., most importers and exporters tend to ship high-value, fragile and time-sensitive goods through air shipping. However, the nature of these goods also necessitates their safety. With no tolerance for damage or theft, businesses turn to air freight shipping as the safest alternative.
With the safety controls at an airport also applicable to air shipment, you can rest assured that the cargo passes through the highest level of security. The process is highly scrutinised, tightly managed and undergoes minimal handling. The recent socio-political issues such as terrorism and the pandemic have resulted in different security protocols such as additional cargo inspections and cross border control protocols.
Today, more than ever, customers are expecting better visibility and clarity over their supply chain. For businesses that prioritise convenience and transparency, live online tracking has become a prerequisite for an air shipping company to offer when transporting shipments. Airlines do not always offer robust track and trace functions, and this has led to freight forwarding companies (like TVS SCS) developing their own user-friendly tracking platform for their customers that opt for freight by air. This value-added service offers shipment tracking services, real-time updates and better inventory management.
TVS SCS has a robust online tracking system called e-Connect, a 24/7 online tracking platform powered by industry-leading software CargoWise that provides end-to-end visibility of your goods. Through the e-Connect desktop and mobile apps, customers can see shipment status, track their goods, and download important documents.
Leveraging our global network and professional expertise, TVS SCS’s air shipping services seamlessly incorporates these five benefits to help you meet your deadlines. In our endeavour to provide world-class services, we consider global standards, appropriate safety measures and innovative processes to achieve business efficiency.
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