How ArcBest Speeds up LCL Transit Times

Posted by Justin Bates on May 17, 2017 - 8:01 AM
International shipping options

Need faster LCL shipping?

If you need fast delivery for your international freight, you might be considering full-container load (FCL) shipping. FCL is often seen as a fast shipping option because the freight isn’t sorted at the port and travels directly to its destination. But what if you don’t have enough freight to fill a 20-foot container? Less-than-container load (LCL) shipping is normally the most cost-effective option for small shipments, but it isn’t known for being fast. So, what’s the solution?

Consider ArcBest® for your LCL shipping needs. We offer faster transit times for LCL shipments due to our streamlined processes and extensive less-than-truckload (LTL) network.

ArcBest international shipping services

With a typical LCL shipment, the freight is processed and consolidated at the port of origin with one or more loads from other customers. Once the shipment is on the water, it usually takes two weeks for it to get to the domestic destination port. When it arrives, the freight gets deconsolidated at the nearest container freight station (CFS). The shipment then waits to load a truck with all other freight moving in the same direction — a process that could take several days. Transit time to the destination service center is usually three to four days, and then each company’s shipment will need to be unloaded and sorted for pickup. This multi-step process isn’t ideal for customers who need quick delivery.

ArcBest can help reduce overall transit time because of the solutions we provide through the ArcBest International team and LTL carrier ABF Freight®. When your LCL shipment reaches our port in Long Beach, California, it’s placed into the ABF Freight LTL network. This means your shipment will have no wait time at the CFS, because we deconsolidate the freight and prep it on-site for delivery and distribution. We also handle prepayment of U.S. duties owed and assist you with customs compliance paperwork, all to expedite the U.S. customs clearance process and to reduce port wait times.

With ArcBest International, you also get other benefits, including:

  • Reduced handling
  • Guaranteed departures, multiple times a week, to most major ports on a fixed day and schedule
  • Complete visibility of your shipment through web-based, real-time tracking
  • Trained customer service personnel to assist you throughout the shipping process

How your LCL shipment is accelerated with ArcBest

Say you’re moving an LCL shipment of electronics from Shanghai, China, to Chicago, Illinois, for the holiday shopping season. Here’s how the process would work:

A standard LCL shipment would require your freight to spend approximately 14 days traveling on the water. After it arrives at the domestic port in Long Beach, California, it could take up to a week to clear customs and get consolidated with other freight headed to Chicago. Then, it will need to travel over the road — a route that can take up to four days. By the time the shipment reaches Chicago, 25 days have passed.

With ArcBest international shipping solutions, the freight would still spend 14 days on the water and four days on the road, but the rest of the process won’t take as long. Because we do our own sorting and consolidating, it will only take us two days to consolidate your freight and get it on the road. Once it’s ready to go, it will be quickly loaded onto ABF Freight equipment and sent out for delivery. The total transit time is 20 days.

Combining the solutions we provide with the ABF Freight LTL network and our broad range of ocean freight shipping and logistics services, ArcBest can deliver your goods faster than other carriers. Trust ArcBest International to deliver your ocean cargo.

Book your LCL shipment with ArcBest

Moving an international shipment can be a lengthy process. But, when you book an ocean shipment with ArcBest International, our team of trained global shipping experts will coordinate the details of your shipment to keep it on schedule.

When you ship with us, you’ll have access to our network of more than 350 service centers in every market and to our real-time tracking capabilities — giving you complete control of your freight from start to finish. Additionally, you’ll have access to our trained customer service staff, who are available to assist you from origin to destination.

To learn more information about our LCL services, our shipping times or how to get started, call us at 844-560-2531.

Posted in: