Congestion Surcharge

In today’s international freight shipping industry, it is now easier than ever to receive an ocean freight shipping quote. All you have to do give some vital details about your shipment, and your shipment is ready to book. Of course there are the usual surcharges that you might have to factor in your shipping rate. One of the most important surcharges that you should be aware of is the congestion surcharge. Essentially, the congestion surcharge is bestowed as a result of idle time of a shipping vessel waiting at a port.

On the surface, sometimes this might not be fair. After all, if a particular port is congested because of outside circumstances, like the time of the year, then it is not fair for a shipper to pay a surcharge. But the carrier sees it differently. After all, the carriers are losing money for wasted time at a port. Therefore the surcharge makes sense. Sometimes, it is the shipper’s fault for a longer idle time at a port. For example, if Customs agents have to search your container for a long time, then you might get hit with a surcharge.

Usually, the congestion surcharge is a percentage of the freight rate you paid. Carriers might have their own unique congestion surcharge policies. And sometimes, you might be hit with a peak season surcharge, if you are shipping during the peak season, and possibly a congestion surcharge if the port is congested. Speak to a freight forwarder to determine how you can try to limit a congestion surcharge.