Learn more about a Freight Forwarder by International Freight Solutions.

If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

What is a Freight Forwarder?

A Freight Forwarder or broker is a company, professional agent, or middleman who is responsible for connecting shippers with freight carriers and helps to facilitate the transportation and delivery of freight/goods around the world.

They support businesses or shippers by helping them to handle all the legal elements of transporting freight from one place to another.

Some of the ways a freight broker achieves this are by helping businesses to hire efficient and reliable freight carrier services, negotiating prices and contracts, tracking loads, scheduling orders with carriers, communicating transport quotes with clients, and monitoring carriers for businesses.

How can a Freight Forwarder help me?

Many businesses hire freight brokers to save cost and time and make the transportation of their freight hassle-free.

Freight forwarders provide expertise, cost-effective solutions, risk management, time-saving benefits, and a global network to businesses involved in international trade. Using a freight forwarder can help businesses streamline their supply chain, reduce costs, and manage the risks associated with international trade.

Your freight forwarder should keep you updated on the shipment’s status once it has been dispatched and let you know if there are any modifications or delays along the route.

Does it cost more to use a Freight Forwarder?

Shipping errors can be expensive and cause significant delays in the delivery of products. So, although it may seem like you are paying more initially, a freight forwarder will save you money in the long run. A good freight forwarder will source the most efficient shipping rates through their extensive network of carriers thus saving you time and money.

Where do you ship freight and cargo to?

Over the last twenty five years, IFS have worked closely and built up trusted relationships with all the major international carriers and shipping companies, importing and exporting from all corners of the globe.

Can I ship goods to a private address?

The answer is yes, provided that the paperwork and documentation is correct. Our team have much experience in organising shipments and can help with this.

How do I get started shipping freight?

The quickest and easiest way is to complete our online Freight Quote. From there our team can advise the next steps.

How do I know which service to use?

This will depend on the size of freight, the destination and how quickly (or slowly) you want to get it there. Our dedicated team of knowledgeable staff will be able to advice on the appropriate mode of transport to suit your requirements.

How do I get my goods cleared through Customs?

For full details of the new Customs Declaration System (CDS) please visit our Freight Resources page >

How do I arrange a commercial invoice?

IFS has invested much time and development in creating a Commercial Invoice template (white label) for our customers. Our experienced staff can provide guidance on how to complete these.

What is an HS code?

A Harmonized System code is a unique identifier to classify the exact type of goods being shipped. This can also known as a Commodity Code. The system is internationally recognized; the customs department of a country defines different regulations based on different classifications.

When you fill out a waybill (commercial invoice) for your international shipment, you will be required to enter the HS code(s) of the goods. Customs authorities will use this code to understand what is being shipped and apply the correct taxes and duties. If you include the incorrect code, you could end up paying the wrong rate – or worse, have your shipment rejected by the destination country. So it is very important to get it right. Here’s a dedicated HS code guide to help you.

Who is the Shipper?

The shipper is someone who supplies and/or owns the goods – also known as a Consignor.

Who is the Carrier?

A carrier refers to an individual or company that carries, holds, or transport goods from one location to the other.

Who is the Consignee?

The consignee is the entity or person legally required to be present to accept the shipment.

What is an EORI Number?

It is short for ‘Economic Operators Registration and Identification Number’ (EORI) and is a system of unique identification numbers used by customs authorities throughout the European Union.

What is import duty?

Import duty, otherwise known as customs duty, is a tax collected by customs authorities on all goods sold across borders. The aim of import duties is to raise income for local governments – but also to increase the end price of the goods for consumers, thus encouraging them to buy from the domestic market, which is not subject to this tax. Common examples of import duties are trade tariffs and excise duties.

What is import tax?

Import tax is a flat tax rate charged by customs on imports. In many cases, the tax is equal to the local sales tax. Even when the goods have been purchased abroad, this tax will still apply when they enter a different country. Examples include sales tax and value-added tax (VAT).

How do duties and taxes impact your shipment?

Duties and taxes will impact the total cost of your shipment, so it’s important you are aware of them early on. You can then factor them into your pricing strategy to ensure your business remains profitable. Additionally, failing to manage duties and taxes properly could cause your shipment to be held up at customs – not to mention any fines you may have to pay.

How much is import tax?

Many countries have a minimum threshold of order value that goods have to meet before taxes and duties apply – this is called a de minimis.

The amount of tax and duties you’ll need to pay for a shipment are influenced by several factors, including:

  • The value of the goods (including insurance and shipping fees)
  • The goods description
  • The country or region of origin
  • The destination country’s tariff rates
  • The goods’ HS code(s)
Why should I add Marine Cargo Insurance?

Loss and damage do sometimes happen and it is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT that you have the benefit of cargo insurance. Find out more >


For a freight delivery quotation or to book in your consignment, please click below…

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