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Freight from the USA
 

Arrival Notice (Notice of Arrival)

In respect of international cargo transportation from the USA LCL, an Arrival Notice (Notice of Arrival) is the document issued by ocean freight carrier's destination agent to the consignee (the recipient of internationally shipping goods) and to their notify parties, if any, to inform that cargo is arriving at the destinations.

Arrival notice provides details of the arriving cargo corresponding with the sea freight bill of lading related to the international shipping. It should also provide charges related to the recovery of importing from the USA goods. It should also provide the initial instructions related to the recovery and a list of necessary documents. It should contain:

  • Commodity description,
  • Sailing details,
  • Destination country customs related charges,
  • Ocean freight carrier's agent's contact details,
  • LOT number associated with the arriving cargo,
  • Initial instructions on the import recovery, etc.

Sea freight from USA

Please keep in mind that an Arrival Notice is NOT a freight release document. Arrival Notice is a document that allows the consignee to file the entry of importing goods into the commerce zone of the destination country and initiate the import recovery under the law of the country.

Also, please keep in mind that, due to Customs regulations, the carrier's destination agents typically contact you upon arriving your cargo at a port of entry, but to the place of delivery as in your bill of lading. Then you have to begin working with the agent to get your cargo to the place of delivery without delay. At this time, you may conduct with the agent delivery of your cargo "to your door," if necessary. 

 

Parties involved in import recovery

  • The consignee (in respect of import recovery called Importer of Records),
  • Destination’s country officials (Destination country's Customs, Government agencies that may concern imported goods, Customs and border protection officers, etc.),
  • An international ocean freight carrier's destination agent,
  • A Customs broker licensed in the destination country. Most of the time, the ocean freight carrier's' agent is the Customs broker as well.,
  • Other parties related to the import recovery and delivery (if necessary) "to the door" of the recipient of the importing goods: domestic freight forwarders, bonded and local warehouses, local cargo transportation companies, etc.

Please note that import recoveries in international shipping are a complex and time-sensitive process. Even though most of the countries over the world allow consignees (importers of records) to work on cargo recoveries directly with the Customs, unless you are not a professional, it is a good idea to work on the recovery with the international carrier's agent or hire a licensed in the country customs broker.

Moreover, if shipping from the U.S. freight LCL, unlike with FCL, you always have an ocean carrier's agent responsible for the de-consolidation of your cargo.  You should avoid the headache and/or extra charges that may occur in the event if you fail in your destination country's import recovery procedures for a reasonable fee.

Please keep in mind that if, for any reason, you forgot about or missed arriving of your importing goods, that does not mean that the destination country's officials will forget about that.

 

Wait for, and do not miss an arrival notice.

As a rule, an arrival notice in your shipping from the USA should be issued to your consignee and a notified party several days before your goods will be entered in the commerce zone of the destination country. Therefore, you should have time to prepare for import recovery. 

Arrival Notice in Seafreight

An Arrival Notice should be emailed or faxed to the consignee and/or to the notify party (if any). Expect it on/in a few days before ETA in your shipping from the USA. Do not miss it! Upon receipt of the arrival notice, start working on your cargo recovery with the ocean freight carrier's destination agent without delay. Keep your eyes on your cargo recovery! Do not let it go out of your control.

If, for any reason, you will not receive an arrival notice as expected, then contact the ocean freight carrier's destination agent as in your bill of lading on/in a few days before your cargo ETD (Estimated Time of Arrival). If the agent has not yet received information about your arriving cargo, then email or fax them a copy of your bill of lading. Reconfirm your contact information, and wait for the arrival notice.

 

Do not ignore or delay your cargo recovery at the destination.

IMPORTANT!!: Since you decided to ship goods from the U.S. overseas, you must clearly understand that as soon as your goods exit the U.S. Commerce zone, U.S. laws do not apply to your freight. Neither U.S. freight forwarder nor ocean freight carrier will be able to assist you in your import recovery overseas. Ocean freight carrier's destination agent should guide. However, the agent is not a U.S. business. No one but your consignee (in respect of import recovery professionally called Importer of Records) can be aware of and work on issues that may lead to problems with your importing goods at the destination.

Yes, International Maritime Laws should apply to your freight. But depending on the country that you ship to, the Laws may be interpreted in different ways. Do not say about other subjective factors peculiar only to your destination country.

Most of the time, with LCL freight, you do not need to hire a destination country's customs broker. Carrier's destination agent is the customs broker, as well. However, we suggest that your first step should be to apply for help from an independent customs broker licensed in the destination country in case of problems.

What can we suggest to you if, for some reason, you will experience problems with the recovery of your LCL sea freight shipment at the destination?:

  1. If, for any reason, you will not be contacted by the sea freight carrier's destination agent on/in a few days before ETA (Estimated day of Arrival), do not wait and contact them first. The contact info is in your bill of lading.
  2. Always request a legal Arrival Notice. Your Arrival Notice must be dated and contain the agent's letterhead and destination charges breakdown. Phone calls or random emails are not enough.
  3. Properly work with sea freight carrier's destination agent. Respect the agent's job. Their business is to get your goods for you as soon as possible. Follow the agent's instructions. Pay destination charges and fees (sometimes called Local Charges) and possess your released goods.
  4. If you face a problem with your shipping from the USA, do not hesitate to contact us. However, if you will not provide a copy of your legal Arrival Notice, most likely, we are unable to work with the carrier on your behalf. I.e., we will always need a copy of your Arrival Notice.

Remember: Import recoveries are time-sensitive! As quickly you begin working on it, as less probably that you will get the deadline penalties: storage, demurrage, Customs penalties, etc.

 
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