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The Pros and Cons of Goods Logistics

Moving products from the markets and goods business to shops and consumers has been as essential part of any goods enterprise for hundreds of years. Great nations and empires have come and gone, but the methods of moving products from their origin to the different distributors has hardly changed, however, the recent changes in, transportation and communication has made it possible to deliver products faster, safer, and more convenient. While most products are still essentially moved through the same channels, by air, land and sea, there are important differences when it comes to business logistics that every entrepreneur in Singapore should be aware of.

Pros and Cons of Land Freight

Land or road freight, the services that usually comprise local freight, can either be through road transport or rail transport. But wait, why would Singapore businessmen need these two? That’s because product logistics does not only mean local freight from local supplier to the shops, but it is only a part of the freight forwarding process that sometimes involves all three methods, land, sea and air freight, when it comes to importation and exportation.

Road transport is used to transport goods from distributors to customers or from retail to distributors, especially perishable goods. Rail transport on the other hand is commonly used for long transits across Asia and Europe, carrying a variety of goods. Your Singapore freight forwarder will arrange the mode of transportation with a logistics company with the best type of freight forwarding services or a combination of different transportation modes (called multimodal) to get from one point to the next.

Road freight is quick, cost-effective, can be tracked easily especially for local freight, and may be used for door-to-door transport. However, the cargo size is limited, the travel is slow and expensive over long distances, and may be affected by the road and weather conditions. The rail freight can carry more cargo, is cheaper for long distances, is transit-sensitive, and is more environment-friendly than trucks.

However, this is expensive, prone to delays, and not ideal for short distances. Land freight is considered generally to be the slowest freight forwarding services, but it has more access to local areas, less susceptible to environmental factors during travel, and can easily adjust to changes in routes on a short notice.

Pros and Cons of Sea/Ocean Freight

When it comes to international freight, companies in Singapore can rely on the consistency of the sea freight, because it’s the most commonly used transportation method by the freight forwarding company for distant suppliers or distributors. Sea freight is cheaper than air freight, but this is only an advantage when you can maximize the containers that are charged by the weight.

Companies with only fewer goods to transport often have to negotiate with a logistics company to share a container with another company, but a freight forwarder can easily do this for you instead of relying on an individual freight broker. This also means that large and heavy shipments and heavy and bulky products can benefit more from ocean or sea freight, although you still have to consider additional charges in the area of destination.

However, sea or ocean freight is slower than air freight when transporting goods, because the products will usually take a month or more to arrive, whereas the air freight can take two days or less to deliver the goods. Sea freight therefore is not ideal for perishable and time-sensitive products, and the sender must always prepare for the length of time it requires to get to the destination.

The shipping company that will handle the freight forwarding services will also have to take note of the trade lane that ocean carriers observe and the possibility of disruptions due to bad weather. There is always a risk of damage to the goods as well due to the longer waiting time at the ports.

Pros and Cons of Air Freight

Air freight is the best choice of the shipping company in Singapore if they need to transport goods over long distances. International freight is more complicated than local freight especially when negotiating with the logistics services company, but air freight usually addresses the problems with sensitive and perishable goods that have short lead times, are in high demand, have short supply in the area, and are fragile. If you choose to partner with a freight forwarder in Singapore like to transport your goods locally or overseas, they will be the one to bear the burden of determining whether the bulk and value ratio will affect the price and fees of transportation—no hassle for you.

Why is this important? That’s because air freight is subject to a lot of customs restrictions and excise restrictions in different countries. It is also expensive and might not be worth the price if the bulk and value of the goods are cheaper than the cost to transport them, and the method is prone to flight delays and cancellations if there are security threats, safety issues, and weather disturbances. There are also size limitations to the goods because there are size and weight limitations that must be observed.

However, air freight is very useful for fast deliveries because goods can arrive at their destination within 48 hours or less, high-demand products can easily be supplied if there is a shortage, delays in delivery are rare, shipping variety is flexible, the lead time of the suppliers are reduced, and the freight forwarding services is higher because the goods do not suffer shipping damage. A lot of logistics company also prefer this method when it comes to long-distance transportation because it reduces potential obstacles and accidents more common in land and sea freight.