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Freight from the USA
Phases in cargo transportation | Modes of cargo transportation by sea

International cargo transportation from the USA

International cargo transportation from the USA is essential to the logistics chain. Our Online freight calculator is designed to remotely manage international deliveries of relatively large orders from the U.S., virtually from anywhere worldwide. It works perfectly for transporting commercial cargo and shipping personal belongings from the USA. You may watch a short video on YouTube to see how easy it is.

 Freight calculator

To avoid fraud in international cargo transportation from the U.S., the United States Government strictly regulates and controls such activities. Any business that provides international cargo transportation services in the United States must be licensed and bonded.

If you ship relatively sizeable cargo from the USA in boxes, crates, or pallets, then AMID Logistics (American Multimodal International Deliveries) is here to support your international cargo transportation needs.

AMID Logistics is a licensed and bonded U.S. Freight Forwarder - U.S. Ocean Transportation Intermediary. Our primary business is LCL freight (Less than Container Load). We support LCL shipping on behalf of small and midsize exporters in the USA as well as all over the world. We manage e-commerce orders targeted at the U.S. market and help customers ship household goods and personal belongings. If you are an inexperienced first-time international shipper, then after reading this article, you should be prepared for international shipping cargo from the USA overseas.


Shipping international using ocean freight services


Do not confuse services provided for cargo transportation from the USA by sea. It all depends on the cargo size, cargo transportation arrangement, and modes of transportation. Sea freight, in general, falls into four categories:

  1. Parcel services.
  2. Shipping goods from the USA with international moving companies.
  3. International sea freight services are provided by Ocean transportation intermediaries (OTI).
  4. Direct sea freight carriers. In respect of international cargo transportation - steamship lines.

When shipping goods overseas, please remember that all the devices assist exporters with international cargo transportation needs. However, only the shippers and consignees are responsible for proper cargo packing, export and import documentation, customs formalities, and all charges beyond freight scope. 

AMID Logistics is a U.S. freight forwarder. Regarding the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations: ...An Ocean Transportation Intermediary is ocean Freight Forwarder... An Ocean freight forwarder is an individual or company that dispatches shipments from the United States via common carriers and books or otherwise arranges space for those shipments on behalf of shippers. Ocean freight forwarders also prepare and process the documentation and perform related activities for those shipments.

When dealing with a U.S. freight forwarder in international cargo transportation from the USA, shippers should also be prepared to deal directly with other parties related to the shipping. It can be U.S. domestic ground transportation companies that deliver cargo to ocean freight carriers; ocean freight carrier's agents, which handle cargo recoveries overseas; customs, any particular organization if a load is under their supervision, etc.


Common phrases in LCL freight

International shippers should consider these three typical phases in any LCL cargo transportation cycle. Each step during transportation cycles corresponds with charges related to the phase. In other words, you should understand what is included in regular sea freight quotes on international cargo transportation from the USA by sea. Most of the time, it is regarding destination charges.


  • Cargo pickup and delivery to an ocean freight carrier's terminal (called CFS - Container Freight Station) OR self-delivery to the CFS by the shipper.
  • Origin country's customs formalities.
  • Cargo handling at the CFS; transfer to the seaport of departure; export documents turnover and cargo release to sail overseas.


  • Cargo is on board the vessel and in the transit between seaports of origin and destination — actual sailing of freight by sea. It may include cargo reloads in docks of trans-shipping. 


  • Cargo entree to the destination; international ocean freight carriers/carrier's destination agent, messaging; handling cargo at the port of entree and documents turnover.
  • Completing destination customs formalities to obtain customs release, i.e., entree filing; assessing customs duty, taxes (if any), and other applicable destination country's governments' related charges.
  • Delivery of cargo to the final destination terminal (the terminal is not a seaport of entree itself); handling the load at the terminal; documents turnover and obtaining the terminal release.
  • Cargo delivery is assigned by the consignee place (called "to door") if not self-picked up from the final destination terminal.

You may find a more complete and comprehensive explanation of international shipping procedures in respect of dealing with a U.S. Freight Forwarder in the FAQ sections of our website:

  • Export from the USA by sea refers to this link.
  • Import to the USA by sea refer to this link.


Different Modes of Cargo Transportation from the USA by Sea

For your convenience, we have separated our online freight calculator by sub-domains for different modes of cargo transportation from the USA:

  • LCL ocean freight (Less than Container Load): International cargo transportation from USA boxes, crates, and pallets by sea. Consolidated ocean freight. You may use an LCL sea freight service to ship commercial cargo, household goods, or personal effects. Here is the related domain.

    IMPORTANT!: LCL sea freight service CAN NOT be used for shipping motor vehicles*

  • FCL COMMERCIAL CARGO (Full Container Load): Transportation from USA entire containers containing commercial cargo. See this related sub-domain.

    IMPORTANT!: You must NOT use the pricing schedule in this sub-domain for shipping household goods and personal effects from the USA! Shipping rates and procedures for commercial cargo differ from the shipping of household goods and personal effects. For sending household goods and personal effects, use another sub-domain below.

  • FCL with HOUSEHOLD GOODS/PERSONAL EFFECTS: International transportation from the USA, including entire sea freight containers containing household goods or personal effects, not for sale but for personal use only. See the related sub-domain

    IMPORTANT!: No motor vehicles* can be included! Export motor vehicles require special customs formalities and procedures.

  • If you ship motor vehicles, FCL contains MOTOR VEHICLES.* International transportation from the USA of entire containers with consolidated motor vehicles consolidated in multimodal ocean freight containers. Here is the related link

  • International shipping RO-RO: International transportation from USA cars, trucks, trailers, boats, heavy equipment, etc. Here is the related link

* In respect of international shipping, motor vehicles mean vehicles such as cars, motorcycles, boats, jet skis, etc., requiring registration with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

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