Different carriers provide various shipping options and services, including international shipping, customs clearance, and tracking. As an ecommerce retailer, it's important to consider factors like shipping speed, cost, and reliability when choosing a carrier for your shipments when exporting goods from the U.S.
There are a number of available carriers for U.S ecommerce retailers to choose from. The most popular are as follows:
DHL is a global shipping company that provides express delivery services for parcels, documents, and freight. They offer international shipping options and use a network of hubs and distribution centers to transport packages globally.
DHL offers a range of express shipping options, with delivery times ranging from 1-6 business days, depending on the destination. Prices for international shipments with DHL will vary based on package size and weight but generally start around 50-60 USD for a small package.
FedEx is a courier delivery service that provides shipping, printing, and business services. They offer a variety of shipping options, including express, ground, and international shipping. FedEx uses a hub and spoke model to transport packages, with packages being routed through central hubs for sorting and delivery.
FedEx is another carrier that offers a range of international shipping options, including express and economy services. Delivery times for international shipments with FedEx range from 1-5 business days, depending on the destination. Prices for international shipments with FedEx will vary based on package size and weight but generally start around 45-50 USD for a small package.
UPS is a package delivery company that provides shipping services for both domestic and international destinations. They offer a range of shipping options, including air, ground, and freight services. UPS also operates a network to facilitate the movement of packages.
UPS offers a range of international shipping options, including express and standard services. Delivery times for international shipments with UPS range from 1-5 business days, depending on the destination. International shipments with UPS typically start around 50-60 USD for a small package, but the price varies based on a combination of factors, such as weight, size, and destination.
USPS is a government-run postal service that provides mail and package delivery services in the U.S. They offer a variety of shipping options, including Priority Mail, First-Class Mail, International Mail, and Global Express Guaranteed. USPS also partners with other carriers to provide international shipping options.
USPS offers a range of international shipping options for ecommerce retailers. Delivery times for international shipments with USPS will vary based on the destination and chosen shipping service. Prices for international shipments with USPS will vary but generally start around 20-30 USD for a small package.
Landmark is a global logistics and ecommerce solutions provider. They offer a range of services, including cross-border shipping, international returns, and customs clearance. Landmark uses a network of carrier partners to provide shipping services for their customers.
Landmark offers cross-border shipping and customs clearance services for ecommerce retailers. Pricing for international shipments with Landmark will vary based on package size and weight, as well as the specific services chosen by the retailer. Delivery times will depend on the destination and the shipping service chosen.
APC is a network of independent parcel delivery companies that provides parcel delivery and logistics services across Europe. Pricing for international shipments with APC from the U.S. will vary based on package size and weight, as well as the specific shipping services chosen by the retailer. Delivery times will depend on the destination and the shipping service chosen.
APC offers various services, including express delivery, next-day delivery, and international shipping. APC uses a network of local delivery partners to provide shipping services for their customers.
It's important to note that these are general estimates; actual pricing and delivery times may vary depending on the specific circumstances of the shipment. It's always recommended to check with the carrier directly or consult a logistics expert to determine the best shipping options and pricing for your specific ecommerce business needs.
Popular systems and practices that govern shipping and logistics regulations that U.S. exporters should be aware of:
Automated Export System (AES): The AES is a web-based system that allows exporters to submit electronic export information to the U.S. government.
Foreign Trade Regulations (FTR): The FTR require exporters to file electronic export information through the AES for shipments valued over 2,500 USD.
Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT): C-TPAT is a voluntary program that promotes supply chain security and works with businesses to ensure their supply chain is secure.
Transportation Security Administration (TSA): The TSA sets security standards for air cargo shipments and requires that all air cargo be screened prior to transport on passenger planes.
It's important to consult with legal and logistics experts to ensure compliance with all applicable regulations. The following resources can help you find qualified legal and logistics experts in the U.S.:
The AES is a web-based system used by the U.S. government to collect electronic export information (EEI) from U.S. exporters. The purpose of the AES in regard to U.S. exports is to know what exporters are shipping.
U.S. exporters are required to submit EEI through the AES for shipments valued over 2,500 USD. An EEI is needed for commodities over 2,500 USD (not 2,500 USD at the shipment level). An EEI can be required for certain commodities valued under 2,500 USD, including goods being shippid to specific countries, goods fall under International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) goods, etc.
The information collected through the AES includes details such as:
The commodity being shipped
The destination country
The value of the shipment.
This information is used by various government agencies to enforce export regulations, ensure national security, and compile trade statistics.
Keep track of what exporters are shipping
It helps to collect export data, which is important for trade negotiations and policy decisions
Reduces the need for paper-based processes
Overall, the AES plays a crucial role for submitting export information, ensuring compliance with export regulations, and enabling the collection of accurate and reliable trade statistics.
If you are printing labels out of Zonos Dashboard, Zonos gives you the ability to pass the ITN number to the carrier. Zonos can help with EEI filing by providing a web-based platform that allows exporters to enter their shipment information and generate the necessary EEI documentation for filing with the AES. However, EEI filing is the responsibility of the sender, and Zonos does not process EEI filing. Zonos will not prevent label generation, and it is the sender's responsibility to ensure that EEI filing is handled for applicable shipments.
The FTR are a set of regulations administered by the U.S. Census Bureau that govern the reporting and collection of data on U.S. exports and imports. The purpose of the FTR is to ensure compliance with U.S. export regulations and to facilitate the collection of accurate and reliable trade statistics.
Under the FTR, U.S. exporters are required to report certain information to the government, such as:
The value and quantity of goods being shipped
The destination country
The mode of transportation used
This information is collected through the AES for shipments valued over 2,500 USD.
FTR exemptions are needed for shipments under 2,500 USD when an EEI is not needed.
Enforce U.S. export regulations
Restrictions on the export of certain goods to certain countries
The FTR require exporters to file EEI through the AES
Failure to comply with these regulations can result in fines, penalties, and other sanctions.
Enable the U.S. government to compile accurate and reliable trade statistics
Used to inform economic policy, trade negotiations, and other decisions related to international trade
Promote transparency and accountability in international trade
Foster trust and cooperation among trading partners
Overall, the FTR play a critical role in regulating U.S. exports by ensuring compliance with export regulations and enabling the collection of accurate and reliable trade data.
The Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) is a voluntary program run by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that seeks to improve supply chain security by partnering with companies that engage in international trade. The purpose of the C-TPAT is to enhance the security of goods leaving the U.S. and to promote the flow of trade while reducing the risk of terrorist activities and other security threats.
The CBP recognizes these companies as trusted partners in international trade
Expected to implement security measures throughout their supply chain
Ensures the integrity of the shipments
Must submit security plans to CBP for review
Are subject to periodic security audits
In return for their participation in the program, C-TPAT members receive benefits such as:
Expedited processing of their shipments at the border
Access to CBP training and resources
These benefits can help to streamline the export process, reduce costs, and improve overall supply chain efficiency.
By promoting supply chain security and working with businesses to ensure their supply chain is secure, the C-TPAT program helps to reduce the risk of terrorist activities and other security threats while maintaining the flow of legitimate trade. This benefits U.S. exporters by enhancing the security of their shipments and promoting the efficient movement of goods across international borders.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is a U.S. government agency responsible for ensuring the security of the nation's transportation systems, including air cargo shipments. In regard to U.S. exports, the purpose of the TSA is to enhance the security of air cargo shipments leaving the United States.
The TSA works with U.S. exporters and air cargo carriers to
Ensure that all air cargo shipments leaving the United States are screened and secured to prevent the smuggling of:
Other dangerous goods
Develop and enforce security protocols
Conduct security assessments and inspections
Provide training and guidance to air cargo carriers and exporters
U.S. exporters who ship goods via air cargo are required to comply with TSA security regulations, which include:
Providing accurate information about the contents of their shipments
Ensuring their shipments are properly secured and screened
Failure to comply with these regulations can result in fines, penalties, and other sanctions.
By enhancing the security of air cargo shipments leaving the United States, the TSA helps to reduce the risk of terrorist activities and other security threats while maintaining the flow of legitimate trade. This benefits U.S. exporters by enhancing the security of their shipments and promoting the efficient movement of goods across international borders.
U.S. exporters have a range of shipping methods to choose from, depending on their specific needs and requirements. Here are some of the most common shipping methods that U.S. exporters may consider:
Air freight: This is a fast and efficient shipping method for high-value or time-sensitive goods. Air freight can be more expensive than other shipping methods, but it can be worth the cost if speed and reliability are a priority.
Ocean freight: This is a cost-effective shipping method for large or bulky goods that are not time-sensitive. Ocean freight is slower than air freight, but it can be more affordable for shipments that are not time-critical.
Ground transportation: This is a shipping method that can be used for domestic shipments within the U.S. or for cross-border shipments to Canada or Mexico. Ground transportation can be a good option for smaller shipments and goods unsuitable for air or ocean freight.
Intermodal transportation: This is a shipping method that combines different modes of transportation, such as truck, rail, and ocean or air, to optimize the shipping process. Intermodal transportation can be more cost-effective and efficient than using a single mode of transportation.
Express delivery: This is a fast and reliable shipping method that is often used for small shipments or urgent deliveries. Express delivery services are available through courier companies such as UPS, FedEx, and DHL.
When choosing a shipping method, U.S. exporters should consider factors such as the value and nature of their goods, the destination country, the transit time, and the cost. It is also important to ensure that the chosen shipping method complies with all relevant U.S. export regulations and that the necessary documentation is in order.
U.S. exporters should consider purchasing insurance to protect their shipments against loss or damage while in transit. Here are some types of insurance that U.S. exporters may consider:
Cargo insurance: This insurance covers loss or damage to goods during transit. It is important to note that many carriers have limited liability for loss or damage to cargo, so cargo insurance can provide additional protection.
Marine insurance: Specifically designed to cover goods transported over water, such as via ocean freight. Marine insurance can provide coverage for damage or loss due to a variety of perils, including fire, collision, and piracy.
Export credit insurance: This insurance can protect exporters against non-payment by foreign buyers due to commercial or political risks. Export credit insurance can help exporters to manage their credit risks and ensure that they receive payment for their goods.
Political risk insurance: This type of insurance can protect exporters against losses due to political events or actions, such as expropriation, war, or currency inconvertibility. Political risk insurance can be especially important for exporters operating in high-risk or politically unstable countries.
When choosing insurance, U.S. exporters should consider the risks associated with their specific shipment and destination. Consulting with a qualified insurance professional to identify the most appropriate type of coverage is recommended. It is also important to ensure that the chosen insurance policy complies with all relevant U.S. export regulations and that the necessary documentation is in order.
Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM)
Phone: 1-800-565-EXIM (3946)
U.S. Commercial Service
Phone: 1-800-USA-TRADE (872-8723)
National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC)
National Association of Professional Insurance Agents (PIA)
Insurance broker and agent directories
Remember to carefully research and compare insurance providers or brokers before selecting one that meets your specific needs and requirements.
U.S. exporters should be aware of the international customs clearance process, which involves obtaining clearance from the customs authorities of the importing country to allow goods to enter the country. Here are some things that U.S. exporters should know about international customs clearance:
Customs regulations: Each country has its own customs regulations that must be followed in order to clear goods for import. U.S. exporters should research the customs regulations of the importing country to ensure that their goods comply with all applicable requirements.
Import duties and taxes: Import duties and taxes may be imposed on imported goods by the customs authorities of the importing country. U.S. exporters should be aware of these duties and taxes, as they can significantly impact the cost of their goods and may need to be factored into pricing.
Documentation: U.S. exporters must provide accurate and complete documentation to the customs authorities of the importing country in order to clear their goods for import. This documentation may include invoices, packing lists, bills of lading, and other documents as required by the importing country.
Customs clearance agents: U.S. exporters may choose to work with a customs clearance agent in the importing country to help navigate the customs clearance process. A customs clearance agent can provide expertise on local customs regulations, help to prepare necessary documentation, and facilitate the clearance process.
Delays and penalties: Delays or errors in the customs clearance process can result in additional costs and penalties for U.S. exporters. It is important to ensure that all documentation is accurate and complete, and to allow sufficient time for customs clearance to avoid delays.
Overall, U.S. exporters should be aware of the customs clearance process in the importing country and take steps to ensure compliance with all relevant regulations and requirements.
There are various carriers for U.S. exporters engaging in international shipping, such as DHL, FedEx, UPS, USPS, Point to Point, Landmark, and APC. The important U.S. export shipping and logistics regulations include those governed by the AES, FTR, C-TPAT, and TSA. To successfully export, U.S. retailers should be aware of and comply with shipping methods, insurance, and international customs clearance.
See Zonospolicies and agreements.
Shipping and logistics
Learn about shippping and logistics options U.S. exporters should consider when exporting thier goods.
United States (U.S.) exporters need to learn the carrier options that are available and most commonly used for international shipping. There are several systems and practices that govern shipping and logistics regulations that U.S. exporters should be aware of. Also, U.S. exporters must consider the shipping methods available, the insurance they’ll need for the goods they ship, and the international customs clearance processes of the destination countries they wish to ship to.