Shipping goods by air remains one of the most popular ways to undertake international freight movement. It is one of the fastest and most reliable and gives you the most freedom when choosing the destination country. With high levels of security and a reduced risk of theft, there are many reasons why more and more businesses are choosing air freight for their shipments.

Whether you’re experienced in international shipping or just starting, understanding what happens during the air freight process can help you better understand costs. In this guide, we discuss the air freight process and how we at Radius Warehouse and Logistics Services optimise the process for your e-commerce business.

What is freight forwarding?

Freight forwarding is the coordination of the shipment of goods from one place to another by a range of means. Freight forwarding is possible for both national and international shipping. Goods may be shipped via one mode of transport or multiple.

Freight forwarding companies help manage the process by making sure everything is in order and that the cargo is delivered fast, efficiently and legally so your e-commerce business can ship goods without a hitch.

Air freight

Air freight is the movement of goods and cargo internationally. It is another term for air cargo and covers everything from the transfer and shipment of the goods by an air carrier through to the arrival in the destination country. Air freight is used for both commercial and passenger goods and can take place on chartered flights or in the cargo hold on a commercial flight.

Other forms of freight forwarding

Other means of freight forwarding include sea freight services. While air freight is faster, sea shipment is more cost-effective and has some environmental benefits. Another alternative is road freight services, which are great for shorter distances and can provide a more accurate delivery time.

Optimising Air Freight for E-Commerce

Optimising Air Freight for E-Commerce

As Air Freight Forwarders, we know that for urgent or time-sensitive consignments, air freight forwarding is often the most appropriate method of transport. We understand that speed and reliability are the main concerns of our air freight forwarder customers.

Radius Warehouse and Logistic Services are one of the few Specialist Air Freight companies in the U.S.A. and Far East for inbound and outbound movements, as well as offering Air Freight Forwarders services to and from most other worldwide origins.

To optimise buying power and freight forwarding services available to provide our customers with fast and efficient solutions for their specific requirements, we have established a global network of agents. Our partners, all of whom meet stringent assessment criteria, have been chosen by us to ensure we have the utmost trust and confidence in the freight service we can offer.

At Radius Warehouse and Logistic Services, our air freight U.K. customers benefit from:

  • A reliable, efficient and friendly service
  • Weekly worldwide import and export consolidations
  • Daily flights from Chicago, Boston, New York, Shanghai and Hong Kong
  • Door-to-door and airport-to-door service
  • Customs clearance at all major UK airports
  • Nationwide collection and delivery coverage
  • Practical solutions for time and financial constraints
  • Import courier service.

Additional air freight services

We also have the capacity and expertise to offer:

  • Documentation Services (Certificates of Origin, Letters of Credit, etc.)
  • Cross trade using our global network – Deliveries from one country to another without the goods moving via The U.K.
  • Express deliveries U.K. / Worldwide
  • Full track and trace service.

Why choose air freight for your e-commerce business

Air freight is usually most suitable when:

  • You’re shipping smaller and high-value goods.
  • You’re shipping goods that are required urgently.
  • You’re shipping goods for a retail business and need to uphold high levels of customer service.
  • You’re looking to benefit from lower insurance premiums.
  • You’re looking to make savings in packaging costs.
  • You need a service that can be effectively tracked at all times.

Air freight is the chosen mode of international shipment for many businesses and individuals for these reasons and many more. Let’s look at the process your business and the goods in question will go through when moving cargo via air.

The air freight process

The air freight process

The air freight process is simple. You choose a freight forwarder, organise your goods for shipment, and we do the rest whilst optimising the process for your business for fast and efficient deliveries.

  1. Choose a freight forwarder. International shipment can be a challenging process to understand and navigate. To reduce delays and minimise the risk of mistakes, we always recommend working with a freight forwarder. Make sure you choose the right freight forwarding company for your business.
  2. Organise your goods for shipment. Once you have chosen a freight forwarder, you will need to prepare your goods for shipping. Firstly, consider the packaging. While air freight is one of the safest means of transporting your goods, you still need to ensure you have the right solution to hand. Smaller shipments can be sent in brand new corrugated fiberboard boxes that are strong, lightweight and offer good protection, too.
  3. Contact your freight forwarder. From then on, your freight forwarder will be on hand to help support you throughout the process. You will need to contact and inform them that you have goods to be shipped. They will either collect the goods from your supplier or request that you have it delivered to them.
  4. Your goods will be taken to the airport. Your freight forwarder will then organise for your goods to be taken to the airport. This may be consolidated with other goods under their management if this is the most cost-effective solution for everyone involved.
  5. Your goods are loaded onto the aeroplane. Once your goods clear customs, they will be loaded onto the aeroplane. Depending on the type of shipment (whether your goods are being shipped independently or consolidated with other goods), this can take anything from a few hours to a few days.
  6. Your goods are transported to their destination. Once all goods have been loaded onto the aeroplane, your goods will begin their journey to the next country.
  7. Your goods will pass through customs. Upon arrival at the destination company, your goods will have to pass through the customs regulations there. Again, this process will be considerably smoother if your goods are accompanied by the correct paper, which has been filled out with the right information. The goods will only be released to the relevant party once all duties and taxes have been paid.

Radius Warehouse and Logistics Services: who are we?

At Radius Warehouse and Logistic Services, we provide a fast, efficient and professional service every time. Incepted in 1996, we are an independent freight forwarder based in the South West of England that offers excellent logistic solutions for worldwide cargo movements.

Staffed by a dedicated core of friendly and efficient professionals who have many years of experience in all aspects of logistics and freight forwarding. We specialise in the U.S.A. and far East inbound and outbound movements, as well as offering services to and from most other worldwide origins.

Radius Warehouse and Logistic Services are a member of BIFA and trade under the standard trading terms and conditions of the British International Freight Association. We also provide fast, efficient and reliable warehouse services.

For more information about what we can offer your business, contact us or request a quote. If you want more information or to keep up to date with the latest, look at our guides and news and events pages. Need help? Work out your shipments with our help and advice, but we’re only a phone call away if you want to ask more questions about how we can help your e-commerce business.