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Knowledge is Power
Ocean Freight

Cargo Ship at Port

Ocean Freight is an economical and reliable method of shipping goods around the world. It is ideal for businesses that require the transportation of large volumes of goods over long distances. Ocean Freight services are typically used for bulk commodities, such as coal, iron ore, and grain, as well as for containerized goods, such as consumer goods, machinery, and vehicles.

General Information

Weight Classes

Ocean Freight is classified based on its weight and volume. The weight class of Ocean Freight typically ranges from 20 feet or 40 feet container loads to bulk cargo that weighs thousands of tons. Ocean Freight shipments that weigh less than 20 feet container loads are typically classified as less than container load (LCL), while shipments that weigh more than 40 feet container loads are classified as full container load (FCL).


Proper packaging is critical to the success of Ocean Freight shipments. Goods should be packaged in a manner that ensures their safety and security during transportation. Common packaging materials used in Ocean Freight include wooden crates, pallets, and containers. Goods should be packed tightly to prevent movement during transit.

It is important to note that the packaging should be suitable for the type of goods being shipped and the mode of transport. For example, if the goods are perishable, they may require specialized packaging, such as refrigerated containers. If the goods are hazardous, they may require specialized packaging and handling procedures.


Ocean Freight shipments require specific paperwork, including bills of lading, commercial invoices, and packing lists. These documents are essential to ensure that the shipment is properly documented and cleared through customs. Bills of lading act as a contract between the shipper and the carrier, while commercial invoices detail the value of the shipment and its contents.

Customs Clearance

The customs clearance process for Ocean Freight shipments involves several key steps:

  1. Filing the Entry: The first step in customs clearance is filing the entry. The entry is a document that provides information about the goods being shipped, the value of the goods, and the party responsible for paying duties and taxes.

  2. Duty and Tax Assessment: Once the entry is filed, customs officials will assess the duties and taxes that are owed on the shipment. The duties and taxes are based on the value of the goods being shipped, as well as the country of origin and destination.

  3. Examination of Goods: Customs officials may inspect the goods to ensure that they comply with regulations and are not prohibited from entry into the country.

  4. Release of Goods: Once the duties and taxes have been paid, and any inspections have been completed, customs officials will release the goods for delivery to their final destination.

It's important to note that customs clearance procedures can vary depending on the country of origin and destination, as well as the type of goods being shipped. Working with a reliable freight forwarder who has experience with customs clearance procedures can help ensure that your Ocean Freight shipment is properly documented and cleared through customs.

Fun Facts: Ocean Freight

  1. The world's largest container ship is the HMM Algeciras, which can carry up to 24,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) and is longer than four football fields.

  2. The world's busiest container port is Shanghai, China, which handles more than 40 million TEUs each year.

  3. The first container ship, the Ideal X, sailed from Newark to Houston in 1956, revolutionizing the shipping industry and making it possible to transport goods faster and more efficiently.

  4. The world's largest cargo ship is the Pioneering Spirit, which is used for Project Logistics but can also transport oil and gas cargo. It is longer than the Eiffel Tower and can carry up to 900,000 tons of cargo.

  5. The longest ocean freight route is from China to Brazil, which takes approximately 60 days to complete.

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