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Sea and air transport: advantages and aspects to consider for international shipments

When it comes to transporting import-export goods for long distances, choosing the right type of vehicle is fundamental because it must meet the shipper’s needs in terms of time, price and specificity of the goods.

For long routes, the choice is usually between transportation by sea, air or rail. In this article we will focus on the characteristics of sea and air shipments, while refer to the dedicated article for more information on the advantages of rail freight.

Lower rates for large batches of goods with Ocean Freight

Maritime transport is one of the most widely used handling systems for goods both in import and export: it is estimated that more than 80% of the volume of goods transported worldwide travels on cargo ships, which are mostly container ships.

Today it is used for the commercial transport of large batches of goods, because each cargo ship is capable of handling thousands of tons of goods.

The main difference between sea and air transport is the speed: if we consider waiting and handling times for air transport, the length varies from a few days to a maximum of 10. While for sea transport it depends on the distance and services available and it can vary from a few days to several weeks.

However, we should highlight that for sea transport are still present the delays that have occurred in recent months due to the recent global crisis in maritime traffic. The situation is now slowly but steadily recovering. On the one hand, the crisis was caused by the pandemic, and on the other hand it was exacerbated by events such as the grounding of the container ship Ever Given in the Suez Canal, the closure of the Chinese port of Yantian due to a Covid-19 outbreak in May 2021 and the more recent closure of part of another Chinese port, Ningbo.

The choice between ship or airplane depends mainly on the requirements for the transit time and according to this even the price varies considerably: the ship is cheaper than the airplane but is also the slowest solution.

Furlog has accumulated years of experience in the ocean and international shipping industry and has partnered with major ocean carriers and has a growing global network.

We manage daily import/export departures to/from major ports on 5 continents, offering a range of flexible and customized Ocean Freight services.

For ocean freight Furlog offers:

  • Full container service (FCL)
  • Groupage service (LCL)
  • Door to door service (from warehouse to warehouse)
  • Assistance in identifying the best route to optimize time and costs
  • Computerized customs practices
  • Handling of all phases of loading and unloading of goods

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Speed and maximum security with Air Cargo Transport

Air transport allows to cover large distances in a short time. Both national and international air transport can be carried out by transporting goods on all-cargo aircrafts (aircrafts destined only to the loading of goods), or on airliners with organizational units for goods inside the holds (in this case we speak of combi aircrafts).

The speed allows the transportation of urgent, fragile, or perishable goods such as fruits and vegetables, but this speed comes at a higher economic and environmental price: statistics show that the environmental impact of air transport is in fact much greater than that of maritime transport.

As already mentioned, the choice of transport must be made after a careful study of the client’s needs.

For air freight Furlog offers:

  • Reserved spaces to/from major international airports
  • Standard services (door to door – airport to airport)
  • Express services (door to door – airport to airport)
  • Computerized customs procedures
  • Care of all phases of loading and unloading of goods, with specific protocols for the most fragile and/or perishable goods
  • Door to door service (from warehouse to warehouse)

Our expertise for your transports

Thanks to years of experience in this field and our strong partners and professionals, we take care of every step of your sea or air freight, including door-to-door services, inland logistics, storage, warehousing and distribution.

Contact us for more information.

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