It’s been over a year since COVID-19 has been in effect, and yet shipping costs are still on the rise. Read on to find out why!
Why Are Rates Going Up?
Since the start of the pandemic, the global supply chain has been disrupted as there’s a shortage of freight containers.
With COVID-19 restrictions still in place, major North American ports and terminals continue to be extremely congested because they have limited ground crew. As a result, many ships are still left anchored for days and even several weeks!
This delays their return to Asian ports since a majority of them return 5-10 days late. Having said that, not only are there fewer vessels available, but they’re also leaving later than usual.
Secondly, the increase in fuel prices which started at the end of 2020 is also influencing the increase in shipping rates.
But that’s not all! With more people working from home, the surge in e-commerce has created a significant demand for shipping. So given that there’s a limited capacity available, many carriers have started increasing their prices.
In fact, at some ports, carriers have also started to offer premium shipping services! Those who pay for this service are able to jump the line and secure a spot for their freight. Since this service costs more, carriers are picking and choosing premium service customers over regular service.
what to expect
If you urgently need your products or want to avoid potential inventory issues, you might need to consider opting for premium shipping costs because of limited space.
Carriers are no longer picking the cheapest rate and with “blank sailings” looming, space remains a big issue. This is expected to continue until the end of the year.
We also recommend that you make bookings well in advance. Carriers are no longer accepting last minute bookings! Under current market conditions, the supplier requires you to make a booking 5 to 6 weeks in advance of the cargo ready date.
The point of advance booking is to potentially identify any space issues, equipment issues or blank sailing that occur. This way, suppliers will have time to address the issue and provide the best solution on moving the cargo.
Impact on packaging
Here at LeKAC, we strive to provide exceptional service!
However, due to increasing shipping costs and paper prices, our prices will be adjusted because they’re global issues. Prices will vary across products, but you can rest assured knowing that we intend to keep them as close as possible to the original pricing!
On that note, if you’ve recently been given a free quote from us, we’d like to emphasize that it’ll only be valid for 2 weeks! If you intend on placing your packaging order after 2 weeks, we will need to do another price quotation.
Considering holiday packaging? We recommend you plan early! By planning in advance, you can secure your shipping spot and avoid any possible delays!
Remember, the increase in shipping costs is affecting businesses all over the world, so don’t wait until the last minute to place your order! By ordering in bulk, you benefit from lower material and production costs which will help to balance out the shipping costs!
Given Covid-19, we understand that this has been a stressful period, but we intend on providing the best packaging solutions for your branding needs. So, if you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact us!
In the meantime, you can check out our blog post on increasing paper prices and its impact on packaging.