How to calculate the Freight cost for Air Shipments?

Now that you have a shipment to arrange for your customer to a airport. You have checked for the rates for shipping this shipment to your desired port. However the rates given are based on kilograms (kgs) or volume weight (vw). How do you go about checking your estimated cost?

What you need?

First, you need the dimensions of the packed box or carton or crate etc. You need the length, width and height in centimeter (cm).
Using the formula, Length (in cm) X Width (in cm) X Height (in cm) divided by 6000, you will get the volume weight (vw)
Do note there are operators who use the unit of 5000 instead of 6000. This is one of the ways the freight operators use to maximize their profit. There is no right or wrong answer. So to avoid disputes, do check with your chosen operator accordingly.

 What is the cost?

Now with the 2 information, the air freight operator will charge your shipment using the higher value. You may question why is this so? The shipment is loaded into a shared unit load container in the airplane. This container is limited in terms of volume and weight. The bulkier your shipment is, the more space it takes up, so you are charged accordingly. The heavier your shipment is, the more weight it takes up, similarly it limits the weight of the other shipments in the same container. Hence, it is relative that you are charged according to the weight taken up by your shipment as well.
On top of this fact, most airplanes for carrying shipments are also passenger planes. Of course there are planes specially used to carry shipments only. However in order to maximize profits, most airline operators make use of their passenger planes which fly daily to also carry shipments. Many of the passenger flights are not fully utilized throughout the whole year. This way they can fully utilize the empty spaces and weight on the planes to carry shipments and ferry them to the same location, saving them the additional cost to arrange another flight to the same location.
Using the above 2 information, you should be able to get the total estimated cost of arranging your shipment to your customer.

Points to Note?

However do note that most rate items are based on the nearest unit, meaning if your shipment is 47.35kgs, it may be charged as 48kgs. There are also certain air freight operator who will use a multiplier on the volume weight or the weight to inflate the information. This is also one of their ways to maximize their profit. Again, there is no right or wrong to this. If in doubt, it is always best to clarify clearly first before agreeing to any quotations and arrange your shipments.

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