Understanding ocean shipping rate surcharge volatility

By ussa-login on Monday, December 5, 2016 - Blog

Ocean shipping surcharges occur when additional shipping charges are added to a cargo load due to size, weight or special handling. As shipping charges and contracts are constantly changing, it becomes almost impossible to track these changes. In turn, freight forwarding companies find it increasingly difficult to create accurate shipping quotes or audit ocean freight invoices due to the lack of information on surcharges and the complexity of their own ocean contracts.

The main causes of freight surcharge management being difficult are:

  • There are over 1300 ocean carrier fees and surcharges which change almost weekly.
  • There is an average of 9 surcharges applied per shipment.
  • Tracking and applying updates are challenging as there is no standard process for learning about new updates. Many updates require in-depth interpretation based on an a Shipper’s own contract with that carrier and companies often lack a platform to manage and apply the updates to their own contracts and calculate their rates accurately.

Without strong contract management capabilities, tracking surcharges can be quite complex. USSA is an expert at keeping contracts simple, easy-to-read, and static as pertains to surcharges. USSA’s contracts include:

  • State-of-the-art, online, in-the-cloud contract management platform for ease of access from anywhere
  • Contracts are negotiated and managed by industry experts that are dedicated to researching, analyzing, and understanding how each carrierhandles surcharge update announcements.
  • Volume leverage to push back on Carriers with unreasonable surcharge requests
  • Rates negotiated to eliminate all but the certain key surcharges, making the Bill of Lading freight much clearer and easier to undertand

Making shipping rates easy to find at USSA

USSA provides a technologically advanced IT platform to efficiently manage the global online ocean freight rates and bidding process as well as the contract management system. We also assist members in managing operational issues to achieve reliable and trustworthy service from carriers.

For more information, please do not hesitate to give us a call.

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