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Cheapest possible shipping methods during COVID

ameszaross

New Contributor
Oct 11, 2021
11
2
Hey everyone!

Recently I've started importing from China to Hungary, and during the beggining of this process I was facing issues by finding the best way to transport the goods, all thanks to international shipping costs that skyrocketed over the past 2 years.

With no experience, my original plan was to find a freight forwarder on Alibaba, because I thought that this would be the most cost-efficient way of doing it. But after talking to more than 20 forwarders, it turned out that the prices they offer is way too high for my budget, and also, with those costs I would be left with no profit margin at all. I did the maths, and the results said I can not pay more than $1.5/kg for shipping, and the lowest offers I got on Alibaba were around $2.8-3.8/kg.

Then came an idea. I contacted DHL directly, and they were able to meet the criteria, they offered me a $1.45/kg price, and I was extremely satistied with the service.

So my question would be, does anyone of you know any other (possibly cheaper) way to import goods to the EU? - Side note, the above mentioned prices are for LCL (Less than container load), for about 7.5CBM, 1500 kilograms.

Also, please share your experiences regarding transporting goods from one place to another during COVID times.

All the best!

ameszaross
 
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James90

Bronze Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Speedway Pass
Jul 2, 2019
92
151
Hawaii
If it's your first time, try searching for a freight forwarder based in your local area that has experience shipping from Asia.

From my experience

-Local forwarder were cheaper than country of origin
-Same timezone and communication is reliable
-Theres more trust and ease of mind knowing exactly where their located is if things go wrong.

I'm sure you could find something cheaper than DHL.
 

Walter Hay

Legendary Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Speedway Pass
Sep 13, 2014
3,271
12,917
World citizen
With no experience, my original plan was to find a freight forwarder on Alibaba, because I thought that this would be the most cost-efficient way of doing it. But after talking to more than 20 forwarders, it turned out that the prices they offer is way too high for my budget, and also, with those costs I would be left with no profit margin at all. I did the maths, and the results said I can not pay more than $1.5/kg for shipping, and the lowest offers I got on Alibaba were around $2.8-3.8/kg.
I would never use a freight forwarder that is advertised on Alibaba.
Here is a quote from my safe sourcing and importing book:
"First I must say that there are possibly many good logistics companies listed as logistics providers on Alibaba. The big problem I have with this section of Alibaba is that they have patched together their flawed physical products suppliers rating system and Trade Assurance scheme and in my opinion the setup is not effective in helping an importer make a proper evaluation.

A two or three word commendation appears in quotes, with a number, which probably means the number of customers who have said what is quoted. It seems unlikely that 45 people coincidentally all said “Fantastic service” for one provider and 76 people coincidentally all said “Fast delivery” about another supplier.

There is a star rating system, with almost all receiving between 4 and 5 stars, and I found none under 4 stars. Overall I see nothing to give me confidence about using one of those providers.

Attempts to instil confidence are made by the advertisers putting well known freight service logos on their listings."


Walter
 

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