June 24, 2024
LCL shipping

With LCL shipment, you pay for the volume of the container that your household goods occupy. Your possessions will be kept in a stack with those of others. Each stage, including packaging and wrapping, must be performed carefully to prevent losses or damages. A minimum volume of 2m3 is needed to transport household items by groupage.

You may decide to transport your belongings in a shared container, commonly referred to as LCL shipping or groupage, if a container can’t hold all of your home goods for your move.

How LCL shipping works.

LCL shipping primarily entails combining multiple shipments into a single container. This includes sharing a container, which is a little more logistically challenging and calls for more and better cooperation to ensure everything happens as intended.

LCL price and rates.

An LCL’s price and rate are determined by volume, typically calculated in cubic meters (CBM). You will be charged more the more space you need. Weight is considered when figuring LCL shipping costs, but since container ships can carry a lot of weight, volume typically has a bigger impact on overall costs.

A shipment of an LCL is subject to additional charges. The costs of products like chassis are included in these fees and are divided among the shipments placed in the same container. In addition, warehousing charges and other particular handling expenses are occasionally added to LCL shipments. 

These fees are incurred because the container needs to be moved to a warehouse and organized according to the consignments. Ocean freight can have a wide range in total cost per CBM.

US port problems and costs

LCL shipping is the most economical option when the gross volume of your package is less than 15 cubic meters. But there are certain extra expenses that you should be aware of.

Fees for cargo storage (demurrage and detention)

In the trade, these fees are referred to as demurrage and detention. Storage charges could be incurred after the ‘grace period of seven days from when the shipment arrives at the US port. Until the shipment is transferred from the port storage area and US Customs and Border Protection has cleared it, these fees will continue to accrue.

What is Bill of Lading costs determined?

With the Bill of Lading, there could be various expenses. These would be outlined in your service agreement with your manufacturers or suppliers. In this case, you are responsible for paying the transportation costs while we deliver the cargo to a certain address. Included in the costs are:

  • Shipment of cargo from the specified location and cargo pickup at the origin of the cargo, 
  • clearing customs
  • Documentation required for shipping

International shipping costs

The following sea freight costs are included in LCL shipments:

  • Bunker Adjustment Factor (BAF) charges to account for the cost of currency conversions and additional cargo ship fuel (CAF) charges.
  • Peak Season Surcharge: Costs associated with the peak maritime freight season (PSS).
  • Sea freight rate standard increases over the PSS period – General Rate Increase (GRI)


Local handling fees in the US.

Port service fees and taxes are additional expenses associated with LCL shipments. These are typically used for;

  • The container is removed from the cargo ship.
  • transport to the container freight station from the landing (CFS)
  • removing merchandise from the container

Typically, these fees are determined based on weight and volume at the set rates.

Clearing customs.

This includes all charges for having US Customs and Border Protection clear your goods and Supply to your door. We use a truck to deliver to your door, and we offer three choices:

Moving goods requires a forklift – Standard

Both loading and unloading must be done manually with -a truck with a tail lift that lowers the cargo for simple loading and unloading.

Remember that the “handbook” and “tail lift” options might incur extra costs.

When You Should Book LCL

  • If your volume is less than 13 m3, LCL pricing depends on weight and volume. LCL shipping is more affordable when the volume of your item is less than 13m3. You can reduce your shipping costs by using LCL.
  • Whenever you need to book last-minute shipments during the peak shipping season, LCL shipping is easier to secure a slot for than FCL shipping when there is a lot of traffic. You can make a reservation for LCL shipping.
  • Filling one FCL container and sending the remaining goods via LCL is the most economical option when the cargo volume is too great to fit into a single container but not enough to fill two.

The most common LCL shipments.

Broken LCL freight.

Your goods are transported in stacked boxes when they are free freight. Although it’s a common choice for LCL cargo shipment in China, the goods are vulnerable to damage. This choice jeopardizes the safety of your goods and other shippers’ cargo.

LCL in pallets

The fact that your cargo is safely transported on pallets and makes for simple handling makes this the choice that is most frequently suggested. Additionally, truckers typically demand that the product be palletized for inland movements. → Palletize your goods to safeguard your LCL shipment.

What proof will I need to submit my LCL shipping request?

You will typically need to provide the following supporting documentation for your LCL shipping request to move forward:

  • For the merchandise, a commercial invoice
  • Statement regarding packing (compulsory for imports to US)
  • checklist for the cargo (required) 
  • certification of fumigation (compulsory for most imports to the US)

Remember that a commercial invoice usually only relates to commercially produced goods. However, there can be circumstances in which a commercial invoice is for the shipment of personal items. To make sure you have all the paperwork you need for your LCL shipment, feel free to give us a call at our toll-free number or send us an email.

What must I not import into the US?

Importing products that are illegal or forbidden into the US is not advised. Import permission is needed for some items. Contact us to help you double-check the items you want to ship so there are no surprises.

Port charges

Port fees come in various forms and are imposed on shipping containers. The cost of LCL shipping normally covers the following expenses:

  • Items owing
  • Charge for terminal handling
  • Lift on/lift-off

Also subject to port fees are shipments that:

  • Come in early
  • Late arrival
  • withdrawn
  • Are modified.

Tips Regarding Your LCL Shipment.

  • All packaging and transportation materials for your LCL shipment should be made of wood-treated materials, and the ISPM-15 confirmed stamps should be visible. Pallets, dunnage, timber crates, and any other frame and brace materials are subject to this.
  • You should pack your shipment carefully and use high-quality materials because they will be handled and transported roughly and suddenly.
  • Use the proper labels and ensure they are visible when transporting fragile items. Label the box on all sides if you can.


In conclusion, LCL  Shipping is the best and most economical option for household goods and other cargo shipments.

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