International Sea Freight Services

Sea freight forwarding, also known as ocean freight, is a very cost-effective solution for transporting large quantities of goods that are not time sensitive. Among the many types of sea shipping services available, sea containers are probably the most common ones, which can be filled by one or several shippers. Whether you require pallet transport, FCL or LCL shipping, at Eurosender, we can organise effective transport of your goods by sea freight and other efficient shipping services.

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REASONS TO USE

Why choose to use sea freight services?

Inexpensive service for shipping cargo through long distances

Suitable for transporting hazardous and dangerous goods

Most carbon-efficient solution compared to air and road transports

ARE YOU A BUSINESS?

International sea freight shipments for businesses

Organise the import of goods in bulk with a specialised sea freight forwarder without binding contracts or minimum volume of orders. Get already negotiated prices and support from an expert team every step of the way.


Advantages and disadvantages of sea transport

PROS

Advantages of sea freight

  • Possibility of carrying a wide variety of cargo, with high availability of routes and vessels
  • Sea freight rates are low for transporting large quantities at once, over long distances
  • Most carbon-efficient mode of transport when comparing the fuel consumption to the weight transported per shipment
  • Shipping by sea or ocean is the safest form of worldwide transport
  • Possibility of safely transporting dangerous and hazardous goods that are forbidden in other shipping services
  • Lower maintenance costs compared to rail or road transport

CONS

Disadvantages of sea freight

  • Sea freight transport is slow, only suitable for shipments that are not time-sensitive
  • Not cost-effective for short-distance shipments
  • Vulnerable to weather conditions such as excessive rain or dry season where the water level in rivers are too low
  • Further inland transportation needed to connect the port to the final destination
  • Tracking of goods transported by ocean freight might be tricky
  • The biggest danger of the sea freight industry is piracy

How to book a sea freight shipment with Eurosender?

We organise international sea freight transportation based on individual requests.

Send us your shipping requirements and our logistics experts will prepare a tailor-made offer.

Send shipping requirements

COSTS OF SEA FREIGHT TRANSPORTATION

How are the sea freight quotes calculated?

The rates for transporting goods by sea are based on the following:

  • Dimensions: Size and weight of the goods to be transported by sea
  • Distance: Sea freight rates are lower for long-distance shipments
  • Pick-up and delivery: Further inland transportation is needed for connecting the port to the delivery address
  • Type of item: The nature of the goods may influence the sea freight quote
  • Insurance: Extra coverage can be purchased for additional protection of the cargo
  • Customs clearance: Fees may apply for international ocean freight shipments
  • Incoterms: The sea freight rate may also be influenced by the incoterms


MORE INFORMATION

Frequently asked questions about freight shipped by sea or ocean transport

What is sea freight forwarding?
Sea freight forwarding, also known as ocean freight, is the transport of goods shipped in sea containers around the world. Containers may be filled by a single importer (FCL) or by multiple customers (LCL). The sea freight forwarder is not the company that will perform the transport, but only a connector between the shipper and the carrier. The sea freight forwarder acts on behalf of the shipper to negotiate the prices and arrange all the transportation details with the carrier.
How much does sea freight cost?
The cost for shipping goods via sea freight varies depending on the size and weight of the cargo, the route and also type of vessel needed. Sea freight transportation is usually the cheapest solution for shipping a large quantity of products in intercontinental routes. To get a quote with Eurosender, all you have to do is send your shipping requirements and our logistics experts will provide you will a tailored solution.
Why is sea freight so cheap?
What makes the costs of sea transport so affordable for shipping large cargo is that this is the most carbon-efficient mode of transport in terms of fuel consumption. Which means that sea ships and vessels are able to carry more quantity per fuel, having a direct effect on the overall cost of the service. However, since the transport of goods by sea only makes the connection between ports, additional road transport is often required to make sure the cargo is transferred from the port to its final destination.
What is the difference between sea freight & air freight?
Sea freight shipping is mostly used for transporting large quantity of items through long distances. It is a very cost-effective solution for transporting goods in intercontinental routes when the items are not time-sensitive since the delivery times are long. On the other hand, air freight is the fastest transport solution, ideal for shipping urgent goods and documents. Due to its higher cost, air freight is mostly used for transporting valuable goods or urgent shipments.
How long does a sea freight shipment take?
Sea freight courier services are the slowest type of transport available. A shipment from the east coast of the USA to the UK can take up to 14 days while a vessel coming from India takes approximately 22-29 days. Besides the time on the water, you should also consider the time required for the shipment to be cleared in customs at both origin and destination countries. Even though sea freight forwarding is more time-consuming, the low price of the service makes it advantageous for transporting a large quantity of goods, especially for commodities.
What products are shipped by sea freight?
It is possible to ship almost any type of product via sea freight, as long as it can withstand the long delivery time. Some examples of products that are commonly shipped by sea are petroleum products, chemicals, cars, heavy equipment, day-to-day products such as salt & sugar, other minor ships, and many more.
Is it possible to transport dangerous goods by sea freight?
Yes, sea freight courier service is the safest transportation alternative for shipping hazardous or dangerous goods. It is often used for transporting fuel, chemical products, flammable items and several other products that are usually forbidden in other services such as air and road transport. The shipper is required to comply with the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG) that regulates the carriage of dangerous goods by sea. It ensures not only the safe transportation of the products but also minimises the risk of contamination of waterways.
What is the maximum weight allowed in sea freight transport?
Depends on the size and type of container being used. Two of the mostly used shipping containers are the 20′ and the 40′, which can carry 21,700 and 26,500 kg respectively. Still, it is important to have in mind that the weight limits may vary for containers from different manufacturers, load regulations and the type of item being transported. Additional charges may apply for shipping loads heavier than the weight limits, since this will require specialised equipment for handling.
What are the types of sea freight transport?

Sea freight can be divided into three categories:

  • Deep-sea freight services: Intercontinental shipping by crossing oceans, covering long distances using big vessels. Deep-sea shipping is most often used for commodities, for example, iron ore, oil, cement, etc.
  • Short sea shipping (also known as coastal shipping): Opposite to deep-sea freight services, this is a kind of shipping on relatively short distances. These vessels used in short sea shipping are much smaller and sometimes can also travel inland. They do not cross the ocean but travel along seashores and other waterways.
  • Inland shipping: Shipping by vessels using inland waterways (rivers, canals, and lakes), with smaller volumes compared to both short and deep-sea shipping. Examples of products being shipped using inland waterways are petroleum, mining, and chemical products.
What are Incoterms in sea freight shipping?
Incoterms determine the responsibility of both the exporter and the importer of goods concerning the shipping costs coverage, insurance, export & import procedures, loading and unloading. For more information, you can consult our article about the updated incoterms for shipping in 2021.