Air freight shipping costs 4-5 times more than road transport, so you must do everything you can to reduce costs.
So what is air freight shipping? It’s a shipping method that involves sending packages to another location via plane. When businesses are looking for air freight shipping companies, they often forget about how expensive it is. Unfortunately, the costs can make it difficult for smaller businesses to sell overseas.
What many owners don’t realize is that they can use a variety of hacks to reduce air freight shipping costs. All it takes is understanding a few shipping terms for air freight and you’ll be ready to save money.
Read on for 7 air freight shipping hacks to lower costs!
1. Use a Consolidation Program
One of the best ways to reduce air freight shipping costs is to use a consolidation program. Consolidation is the process of sending your packages with other companies’ shipments. This prevents you from having to spend more on air freight shipping companies when you aren’t sending many items.
A consolidation program is perfect for small businesses that want to send small orders somewhere. If you can’t avoid regularly sending small packages, this is the best option for you.
A load board is a website that shows the weight of a truck, trailer, or other vehicle. Load boards are especially useful for calculating weight and saving time and money. You can free sign up in the load board.
Instead of paying for a large shipping space, your packages will take up the leftover space in another shipment. This benefits both you and the other company because you can pay them a small fee and they’ll avoid paying for unused space.
2. Ship More at Once
When people are choosing between air freight or shipping, they often don’t consider how often they send things. If you end up using air freight all the time, you’ll spend much more than you would if you spread out shipments.
To save costs, simply start spacing out shipments by sending more at once. Avoid sending a plethora of packages individually because you’ll pay for the distance of each package. However, sending everything at once will only require you to pay for the distance once.
3. Build Relationships with Carriers
Because domestic air freight forwarders are expensive to use, you can build relationships with a carrier to get discounts whenever you ship things. This is crucial when running a small business because it’ll make it easier to expand into international regions.
To build a relationship with a carrier, you can contact one of their specialists and explain to them how you’d like to use their service. When you tell them how much you want to ship and how often, they’ll give you recommendations. They may also want to form a partnership so that you get exclusive services at lower rates.
4. Outsource Transportation
Out of all the shipping terms for air freight, one of the main terms you should know is “outsourcing.” This is when you pay another company to handle certain tasks for you. While using a carrier is technically outsourcing, you should also outsource the transportation used for shipping management.
Before shipping products, you’ll need to take them to the carrier and load everything. However, you can outsource this entire process and avoid having to hire salaried employees for the job.
Outsourcing transportation will be more cost-effective and you can use the saved time to focus on other things in your business. Another benefit of outsourcing is that you won’t have to train anyone because they’ll have in-house experts that know exactly what to do.
5. Use Less Packaging When Possible
Try to save air freight shipping boxes whenever you can because they can be reused for future shipments. You should also avoid using a larger package unless you need to. Not only will this make shipping items more expensive, but you’ll also have to spend more money on packaging.
One of the best ways to use less packaging is to fit as many products into one box. Unless you’re transporting fragile goods, you shouldn’t have a problem sending things together. The only thing you’ll need to do is evaluate the risk of something getting damaged when placing it with something else.
6. Extend Hours for Carrier Pickup
If you struggle to find time to ship products, it’s most likely because your business closes early. Many carriers offer a pick-up service, but your business must be open for them to pick it up, so closing at 5 PM won’t give them enough time.
When negotiating with a carrier, ask them what time they think they can arrive. From there, keep your business open until they get there. Even if you want to close, stay at the building or pay someone else to so that you can get your packages shipped.
7. Prioritize Shipments
The last thing you can do to reduce air freight shipping costs is implement order-processing priority. Those that are more urgent should get sent first, so determine which things can’t wait. The urgent shipments can get sent by air and everything else can use another shipping method.
Use a variety of transportation solutions so that you’re only paying for air freight when needed. This is a simple way to save money, you’ll just need to ensure that everyone else is on the same page to ensure things go smoothly.
Start Using These Air Freight Shipping Hacks Now
Now that you have a good idea of how to save money when air freight shipping, start implementing these strategies as soon as possible. Buy some air freight shipping boxes, separate the products that’ll get shipped by air, then everything else will fall into place.
If you still think you’re spending too much on shipping, try to send more at once. Don’t be afraid to use a consolidation program to further lower costs.
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