What is ocean freight?
Ocean freight is the movement of goods in ships over seas as part of global supply chains. Ocean shipping or sea freight is usually undertaken by large vessels carrying thousands of shipping containers. Air freight may be quicker, depending on the route, but sea freight has the advantage of being able to carry much higher volumes at a more competitive unit price.
What does LCL mean?
LCL means ‘Less than Container Load’. LCL shipments do not use the entire space of a container, and cargo from other customers are combined to fill up the container. LCL is also known as a ‘Consolidated container’.
What does FCL mean?
FCL means ‘Full Container Load’. This is when a shipment takes up a complete container, and a shipper does not have to share the container with another customer’s cargo.
Different types of container
Container sizes can be 20 foot, 40 foot, 40 foot ‘High Cube’ and 45 foot. Such standardisation means that ships can be loaded mechanically with the most efficient use of space possible. There are different types of container, depending on the kind of goods being transported. They include refrigerated (‘reefer’) containers and tanks for chemicals or hazardous liquids.