Most companies involved in importing from China will have had a shipment that suddenly becomes urgent for any number of reasons such as production issues, port delays, weather etc.
When this does happen you may find that if you are importing from China by sea freight its not quite quick enough to get the goods back in time and importing from China by air freight is just not viable down to the extra expense.
This is when you need to speak to your freight forwarders because there is another option for you to consider and its a mix of both modes of transport.
A rather niche sector for Freight Forwarders who are importing from china but a necessary sector none the less is the sea-air route that can speed up the transit time but may not be as expensive as the direct air freight option.
If your freight forwarders have been involved in importing from China for a number of years then this routing should not be something new and should have been offered to you in time of difficulty.
Understanding the routing shows that its not a difficult procedure to follow and it works by sailing the freight into Dubai and then changing the mode of transport to air freight for the inbound journey into the UK.
If this were a new concept when importing from China then worries such as transshipment may add elements of handling by freight forwarders that does not need to be included but as its now been running for over 30 years it is a well oiled machine that rarely lets the forwarding community down.
In real terms when you compare importing from China by sea and the sea air option you can reduce the transit time by around 8-10 days and the invoice from your freight forwarders should represent a saving of around 15-30% over the direct air freight option.
Eclipse Worldwide have been offering this service for a number of years now so if it is something that you feel would fit with some of your time critical shipments then get in touch and we will see if this can work for you.