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Key Factors That Affect Shipping Rates

Key Factors That Affect Shipping Rates

Key Factors That Affect Shipping Rates

Compare Rates Before You Freight!

If you run a global firm or, more especially, an e-commerce business that ships products across borders, you may have noticed that the cost of international shipping can fluctuate wildly.
You know that there are a lot of variables involved in transporting packages from one country to another. It may take some time for your packages to reach their destination due to factors such as the economy, the cost of fuel, and unstable international issues.
Understanding the variables that affect shipping prices will help you budget more effectively. So, consider these six factors that affect shipping rates before sending your freight:

Fuel Prices

Fuel is required regardless of the mode of package transport. Since the price of fuel seems to fluctuate frequently, the cost of transporting your items will also vary. If the price of fuel increases, shipping businesses will have to charge their consumers more. There are a wide variety of triggers that might cause a spike or drop in gas prices. If a producer of oil is sitting on a significant stockpile, that oil will flood the market, lowering the price of gasoline for everyone. Fuel prices can skyrocket if a country’s oil supply is cut off due to a war.
Since the price of fossil fuels is highly variable, many shipping corporations are putting money into energy-efficient equipment to reduce their reliance on it. This can help lessen the effect of higher gas prices on international shipping costs, but customers will probably still see price increases from shipping companies.

Tariffs and Customs Regulations in International Trade.

Since international shipping is an inherent part of international e-commerce, so is the possibility of trade tariffs, or levies levied on foreign-made products. The price of international shipping is increased when a person or business makes an online purchase of goods from a country that has implemented trade duties. Imposing trade tariffs can be a deterrent to illegal behaviour or a boon to domestic production and manufacturing in a given country. If one country puts trade tariffs on another, the other country is likely to respond by putting its own tariffs in place, which will slow down trade between the two countries.
Tariffs on imported goods are a direct consequence of global politics. Abuse of human rights, nuclear proliferation, and questions of sovereignty are all potential sources of conflict between nations. Some businesses may have to look outside the country for their supply chain needs because of the high tariffs. Tariffs may be put in place, some permanently and some temporarily, until the two countries come to an agreement.


The ports in these countries may also be subject to stringent security checks. Such measures are typical in nations under authoritarian control or those in a state of emergency. Some of these nations may be wary of inbound packages and require extensive inspections before allowing them entry. The port may impose a security surcharge as a result of these extra precautions, which could increase shipping times and expenses. Obviously, it’s in the best interest of shipping businesses to know which ports impose these fees so that they may pass the cost on to their clients.

Traffic at the Docks

Congestion at some of the world’s largest ports can raise fuel costs and slow product deliveries. As China and other Asian countries increase domestic manufacturing and exports, the ports that handle these tend to be in Asia, namely Singapore and Hong Kong. The shipping process could take longer and cost more than intended if you’re sending your package to one of the busiest ports on the globe. Hopefully, these disruptions and delays will become less frequent as these nations and ports adjust to the increased volume of trade. However, until then, shipping companies will reflect the difficulty of entering and leaving certain ports in the prices they charge their clients.

Weight and Dimensions

The cost of international shipping is also affected by the size and weight of your shipping containers, just like domestic shipping. However, unlike domestic shipping, options for moving products across international borders are more constrained. Consequently, your two remaining freight shipping options are by air and ocean. While air freight is the best option for getting your delivery over the ocean quickly, it may get very pricey if you have to send more than a few additional pounds.

Means of Transportation

Shipping costs might vary significantly from country to country and even by the mode of shipment you select. You can choose between air freight and ocean freight when sending packages internationally. The two options can have quite different international shipping costs. When compared to ocean freight delivery, the cost of transport via aeroplane might be as much as five times more.
Despite the higher cost, air freight delivery has many benefits that make it worthwhile. When compared to ocean freight shipment, air freight delivery is both quicker and more reliable. Shipping via air can get your goods there in a matter of hours, whereas shipping via ocean freight can take up to a week. The open ocean presents its own set of challenges for sailors, as it is not uncommon for ships to experience weather-related setbacks. There are size and weight restrictions associated with air freight shipping, so if you have a large or heavy shipment, you may be forced to opt for ocean shipping instead.

Bottom Line

Sending packages internationally introduces you to a wide range of possible difficulties. The costs of transportation can be mitigated to some extent by shipping to a country on the same continent as the one you are shipping from.
Remember to keep an eye on the elements stated above, such as the fluctuating price of fuel, international relations as they pertain to your trade partners, shifts in security practises, and port congestion, since these can all affect the success of your cross-border e-commerce firm. You will be able to make sound decisions if you are familiar with all the factors that affect shipping rates.
We at Vineyard Brokerage offer lower rates than the competition for shipping both domestically and internationally because we quote our tariff after considering fuel prices, port traffic, and international customs, and most importantly, we consider size, weight, and distance to be covered beforehand and quote the minimum tariff. We also deliver the goods on time and without any damage. So consider Vineyard Brokerage before sending any of your valuable freight, both domestic and international, and rest assured of the delivery being on time and in good shape.