It’s better to go ... by sea
Air or railway communication is not always the most suitable way for the goods’ carriage, so you should not discount the transportation by sea. For a deeper dive into this topic, especially for ACEX, Denis Bobrakov from Black Sea Shipping made a master class for those who want to understand more in sea transportation and start to benefit from it.
The development of container shipping started in the 70s of the last century and from that moment on they began to develop actively. It just happened that sea transportation is the cheapest way of transportation. Container transportation by sea will always be ahead air, road and rail transportation. Every year new services, new directions appear, new ways of optimization are invented.
For common convenience, the types of containers are divided into several types.
The main types of containers are:
- 20 feet (for large loads with large mass, but small volume). They usually carry ceramic tiles, marble, various metals.
- 40 feet (usually pallet loads are placed). Obviously, more freight can be placed there for transportation. Such containers are equal to the volume transported by the truck.
Shipping costs are always charged per a container. It does not matter what weight and volume of cargo is. There is only one rule - if it fits - you will have to pay only for the freight of the container.
There are containers for oversized cargo, as well as containers with temperature retention (for transporting fruits, vegetables and goods in general, which should not be exposed to extreme heat or cold). But you should keep it in mind that such containers will be more expensive, since they are connected to the network on the ship, and therefore will have additional costs.
All containers usually belong to shipping lines. Sea lines are the owners of the ships which organize the delivery of the containers from port to port on a specific route. There are big players who already have a large network of partners and a wide geography of cargo transportation, but there are also medium and small companies on the market which are located in a certain region.
As Denis Bobrakov noted: “The Black Sea Shipping Company (ACEX Novorossiysk) is mainly engaged in shipments through the port of Novorossiysk, and it has its own lines that operate only in the Mediterranean, but shipments through Novorossiysk come from everywhere. All shipping lines are competitors on the market. Everyone is trying to come up with new, more convenient routes. But some lines make alliances - when the ships of the lines alternate and use the same sea route to transport goods from different companies. All this works like a living body, the rates change very quickly, both upwards, and downwards."
Multimodal transportation plays an important role in the logistics area. This is the transportation of goods by several modes of transport. The same delivery of cargo from China to Moscow via St. Petersburg or Novorossiysk is becoming multimodal. Since part of the route, transportation takes place overland (China), and then by sea to the port, and then by bus or car (through Russia). But at the same time, the container is the same which we loaded in China. Most carriers do not sell freight, but provide multimodal transportation services. It also happens that customers order one part of the transportation (for example, from port to port) from one forwarder, and delivery from port to the city from another forwarder. It all depends, of course, on the terms of delivery.
Now there is such a globalization, when large forwarders are promoting electronic platforms for quotations in order to make it easier for customers to come and order shipments. But such small forwarders as Black Sea Shipping are not afraid of such a turn, because the issue of communication, flexibility and efficiency still remains.