Shipping Goods to Kenya: 7 More Terms You Will Encounter

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Published On:

February 14, 2017

In a previous article, we had a look at the commonly used shipping terms. In this article, we will continue to explain the meanings of more terms that you are likely to encounter when shipping your goods.

Consignee – This is the person whose details appear in all shipping documents as the party to whom the shipment will be delivered at the port of destination. The consignee is deemed to be the buyer/owner of the goods and is due to declare customs and pay relevant duties and taxes.

Mombasa Port

Containers being offloaded at Mombasa Port. [Image:]

Consignor – The consignor (or consigner) is the person or organization that delivers a shipment to a carrier in order to have it transported to a consignee.

– This is a freight shipping method where several individual consignments at the point of origin are combined into one shipment to make up a full container. Shipping by this method allows the cargo to be delivered as container cargo and in this way the rates are likely to be lower. There is also the increased benefit of added security. At the destination, the goods are deconsolidated and delivered to their intended consignees.

Bulk Cargo – Also known as bulk shipment. This is loose or non-containerized cargo, that is often most conveniently carried in the hold area of the ship, such as wheat grains or cement. Upon arrival at the destination port, it is offloaded through hatchways or other similar means.

CFS – This is an acronym for Container Freight Station. A CFS is a facility at the port (or nearby) where container cargo is loaded off and on to a ship.  A CFS may also be referred to as a Container Terminal. The operations at the CFS are similar in nature to those at the Port terminal, meaning that all bulk or loose cargo undergoes customs clearance for export and import.

Per CBM – This is a unit of measurement of cargo. CBM stands for Cubic Metre. This means that the cargo will be charged per cubic metre. A cubic metre is a measurement of volume – that is, multiplying the length by width by height. Usually, standard cargo container measurements are in feet so a little arithmetic may be needed to convert the volume into cubic metres. A 40-foot container carries about 72 cubic metres but not all of this is usually filled up by cargo.

LCL and FCL – These stand for Less than Container Load and Full Container Load, respectively. LCL is a shipment that does not fully fill a standard container. An FCL is a container that is loaded and intended for only one consignee. In essence, the whole package is meant for one consignee and the container is loaded to capacity. In practice however, despite being termed FCL, shippers do not fully load the container due to logistical reasons.

These are only brief descriptions of some of the terms that you will encounter when shipping goods to Kenya. We shall be exploring these and others in deeper detail in future posts. Keep your tabs on the Sidoman Blog as we continue to delve into matters logistics discussed by the top logistics company in Kenya!



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