April 3, 2020
The latest news, company announcements, DGX events and industry-position posts.

What is the law of "General Average" in shipping and why does it matter?

February 19, 2020

The law of “General Average" is a shipping term that matters when dealing with cargo insurance, bills of lading, and the legal issues of cargo.

  • The law of general average is a principle of maritime law whereby all stakeholders in a sea venture proportionally share any losses resulting from a voluntary sacrifice of part of the ship or cargo to save the whole in an emergency.
It’s the shipping principle of maritime law. General Average occurs when a voluntary sacrifice is made to safeguard the vessel, cargo or crew from a common peril, for example, a fire. If the sacrifice is at issue, all parties shipping on the vessel contribute to the loss based on their cargo’s value whether their shipment was damaged or not. Appointed adjusters will assess the value of each shipment on board and apply a formula that determines the financial contribution of each cargo owner.

If you’re a cargo owner with shipments onboard a declared “general average” vessel, the likelihood of having your cargo released timely is dependent on how soon you can post a security. The security must be in the form of a cash deposit, bank guarantee or bond. If the cargo owner has cargo insurance, the “average guarantee” is posted by the insurance company. Having cargo insurance is beneficial to cargo owners as it not only provides coverage for damaged goods but it facilitates the release of their cargo.

The General Average and Salvage Adjusters will appoint collecting agents to prepare and collect securities from each of the parties concerned in the cargo on board. Cargo will only be released upon receipt of the required security.

 The following forms will be required:
  • A copy of the cargo commercial invoice
  • An Average Bond form to be completed and signed by the owners of the cargo. 
  • An Average Guarantee form to be completed, signed or stamped by the insurance company (when insured). 
The Average Bond and the Average Guarantee form should be sent to the cargo insurer along with the bill of lading and commercial invoice for any insured shipment.

If you are the NVOCC or freight forwarder like DGX-Dependable Global Express, you should pass along any General Average paperwork to the cargo owners and advise them to contact their cargo insurers to arrange the guarantee. Unfortunately, for uninsured shipments, a cash deposit will be required in place of an insurers’ Average Guarantee. Adjusters will advise the amount of the cash deposit required.

Please contact your local DGX representative should you have any questions or need additional information. Our team will be glad to further explain the benefits or securing cargo insurance.

At DGX we offer a unique package of shipping services. If you need assistance, please reach out to your local office or call toll free 1-800-488-4888 and we can help you. We specialize in international ocean and air freight shipping.


What factors do you need to consider when shipping to New Zealand?

January 29, 2020

What most people don’t know is New Zealand's trade is predominantly imports and their exports are world famous consisting mostly of dairy products, meat, produce and wine. Here's what you need to know when shipping to New Zealand:

DGX Smooth Shipping to GuamBy ocean: there are five main seaports for shipping freight into New Zealand:
  • Auckland
  • Tauranga
  • Centrepoint (Wellington)
  • Lyttelton (Christchurch)
  • Otago (Dunedin)
By air: Auckland airport handles 90% of airfreight into NZ with Christchurch handling a small amount per year. DGX-Dependable Global Express has offices in both locations.

Environmental Regulations: Although the New Zealand people are some of the most laid back and down to earth people in the world, there is one thing they take very seriously--their environment. New Zealand has strict controls on what is imported into their country to protect their flora, fauna, and human health.

Every shipment entering the country must be given clearance by a government body called the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) as well as their customs department.

MPI has extensive controls in place to protect NZ from biosecurity risk. There are strict controls on a wide range of biological products and commodities including:
  • Plants and plant products, including wood and timber
  • Animal products and animals
  • Biological products and organisms
  • Food
  • Vessel and aircraft, containers and cargo
  • Children’s products
With decades of experience, the dedicated team at DGX is ready to assist with all the right documentation and guidance for special projects, break bulk, container shipping and/or airfreight to New Zealand. We also handle specialized products from hazardous goods to organic foods. We are committed to offering the most reliable, timely and cost-effective solutions.

New Zealand is also a gateway to all the Pacific Island--territory which DGX provides hassle-free Less than Container Load (LCL) service to, including all the major islands from the US.

Our team specializes in US trade and we also offer imports and exports worldwide. With a unique package of shipping services, please reach out to your local office, email us, or call toll free at 1-800-488-4888 and we can help you.

DGX-Dependable Global Express. The Supply Chain Partner You Can Depend On.


Commercial shipping guidelines to the Philippines

January 3, 2020
If you want to start shipping commercially to the Philippines, here are the primary steps to help guide you:
  1. Find the right shipping partner
  2. Package your goods
  3. Choose the right level of service
  4. Provide shipping details to your shipping partner (i.e. pieces, weight, dimensions, and any special requests or needs)
  5. Print the shipping labels and documents and attaching them to your package
  6. Pass the shipments to the carriers/forwarder
New to the Philippines? A bit of background
  • Comprising more than 7,157 islands, the Philippines is home to 107 million people, and the population is expected to grow by two million every year.
  • International ports include:
    • Manila (north/south)
    • Cebu
    • Davao
    • Cagayan de Oro
    • General Santos
  • International Airports
    • Manila
    • Cebu
Important Philippines shipping guidelines
The Philippines have unique standard operating procedures and policies, and definitely different implementation of their import rules versus other countries. There are always worldwide logistics standards that apply but there are unique ones for the Philippines.

Consider the following when shipping from the USA to the Philippines:
  • The Customs Administrative Order (CAO) is a fee levied by the Philippines Bureau of Customs and applies to all imports entered for consumption through a Formal Entry Process.
  • Their back-door customs charge is a fee charged by Philippines Bureau of Customs for an entry that is time critical and put in the front of the queue.
  • The Philippines Bureau of Customs runs under a red/yellow/green light system.
    • Green means approved and getting released immediately.
    • Yellow means it is flagged for a document review.
    • Red means it’s a 100% intensive exam, for documents and cargo.
When cargo is destined for the Philippines from the USA, one of your resources is DGX Philippines. We offer a fully integrated shipping and logistics solution such as Full Container Loads (FCL), Less Than Container Loads (LCL) for ocean freight, and air freight. We also offer trucking, customs brokerage, warehousing, distribution, and 3PL services.

If you a one-stop, experienced shipper to help get you to the Philippines, please reach out to your local office or call toll free 1-800-488-4888 and we can help you.

For DGX in Cebu:

For DGX in Manila:

What things to consider when shipping to Australia from USA?

November 20, 2019
Australia’s import restrictions and biosecurity requirements are some of the strictest in the world. Thus, it’s important to have a reliable and competent freight forwarder to guide and support you in shipping to Australia. Here are the important shipping factors you need to know.

Import requirements
Commodities such as food products, pharmaceuticals, animal products, firearms, vehicles and other have to meet certain import requirements and might even require an import permit. To see if your goods have to meet special requirements you can verify the requirements in the Biosecurity Import Conditions System (BICON).

Biosecurity Risks
The goal of biosecurity inspections is to reduce the risk of imported pests and diseases into Australia.

One of the most important biosecurity risks is due to the rapid expansion of the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) in Europe and North America in recent years. Because of this, the Australian authorities have imposed mandatory fumigation during the BMSB risk season (September 1 through May 31 inclusive) for certain commodities and depending on the origin of the goods. Read more about BMSB fumigation here. During the stink bug season, it’s important to work closely with an experienced, knowledgeable freight forwarder to avoid delays and extra costs upon arrival of your goods into Australia.

Additionally, some commodities—like goods that are destined for rural areas or personal effects shipments—have a higher risk of being chosen for biosecurity inspections upon arrival into Australia.

Import Documents
To ensure that the import process goes smoothly it’s important that the import paperwork is complete and correctly filled out.
  • All import shipments require a commercial invoice with values for all items listed. Zero values are not accepted by customs. An example would be promotional materials.
  • All Less-than-Container Load (LCL) and Full Container Load (FCL) shipments require the shipper to fill out a packing declaration on company letterhead including address and phone number, and needs to be signed and dated.
  • An Australia Packing Declaration form can be downloaded from DGX - Dependable Global Express.
  • Additional paperwork such as manufacturer’s declarations, asbestos declarations, ingredients lists, etc., might also be required. 
  • The USA and Australia have a free trade agreement, the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA), in place which enables consignees to claim a preferential duty rate if the goods meet the AUSFTA Rules of Origin. In order to claim a preferential duty rate, a supplier has to issue an AUSFTA certificate on company letterhead including address and phone number, and needs to be signed and dated. More information on AUSFTA can be found here.
Australian Shipping Sea PortsAdditional Australia Shipping Information

Main Sea Ports
  • Brisbane
  • Sydney
  • Melbourne
  • Adelaide
  • Fremantle
Major Airports
  • Brisbane
  • Sydney
  • Melbourne
  • Adelaide
  • Perth
Transit Times to Australia Ports
  • Transit time from the West Coast of the USA to Australia is around 20-40 days.
  • Currently there is only one direct weekly service from the West Coast to Australia with Sydney and Melbourne being direct port of calls and a fortnightly call of Adelaide.
  • Currently there is no direct service into Brisbane and Fremantle from the West Coast.
  • The transit time from the East Coast to Australia is around 29-45 days.
  • There are currently multiple services from the East Coast to Australia with direct calls to Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. Check here for DGX’s sailing schedule to Australia ports.
Packing Material
Packaging material for import shipments must not contain prohibited materials such as:
  • Straw
  • Peat
  • Hay
  • Chaff
  • Used fruit and vegetable cartons
Additionally, all wooden packaging must be heat treated or fumigated before being imported to Australia.

Australia is the country of kangaroos, koalas, beautiful beaches and laid-back people. But being an import nation, Australia is also very protective of their environment and their local industries.

Before shipping any goods to Australia, consult with your trusted freight forwarder, such as DGX, to ensure you understand all import requirements and know what kind paperwork is required. Give us a call toll free at 1-800-488-4888 and we can help you safely and efficiently ship to Australia.

What to consider when shipping from the USA to Japan?

November 4, 2019
There are five major base ports in Japan: TOKYO, YOKOHAMA, NAGOYA, KOBE and OSAKA. These five ports account for the bulk of Japan’s overall international container traffic by ocean.

Average transit time from USA to Japan by ocean:

From US West Coast (direct service)
14-20 days
From US East Coast (all water service)
30-40 days

How to select your destination port?
Always consult first with your buyer (importer and their customs broker) as some imported products, such as apparel, furniture or general merchandise, can be brought into Japan after undergoing the customs inspection at the nearest port of entry.

Note that Japan imposes restrictions on the sales or use of certain products including health-related goods such as medical products, pharmaceuticals, agricultural products and chemicals.

Leading Ports of Entry with Imported Foods Inspection - DGX blogIf food-related items are being imported, the importer must submit a “Notification Form for Importation of Food” to the Quarantine Station. You will then be asked to ship to the designated port with a Quarantine Station where on-site inspection to verify the food poses no threat to human health can be performed.

Japanese Customs reviews and evaluates these types of products for import suitability before shipping to Japan. Licenses from the relevant regulatory agencies may also be required.

The use of certain chemicals, food additives and cosmetics is severely regulated. Make sure to do your research before shipping.

Tips and Tricks to Avoid Customs Delays

Always work with a trusted freight forwarder or customs specialist to ensure your shipping is done properly.

Japan’s prohibited imports include:
  • Narcotics and related utensils
  • Firearms and firearm parts including ammunition
  • Explosives and gunpowder
  • Precursor materials for chemical weapons, germs which are likely to be used for bio-terrorism
  • Counterfeit goods or imitation coins or currency
  • Obscene materials or goods that violate intellectual property rights
  • Other restricted items include but are not limited to certain agricultural and meat products, endangered species and products such as ivory, animal parts and fur where trade is banned by international treaty
Japanese government agencies also impose tight restrictions on certain commodities including:
  • Aerosols
  • Chemicals
  • Food additives
  • Meat and fish products
  • Fruit, nut and vegetable preparations
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Medical devices
  • Cosmetics
  • Toiletries
  • Toys
  • Pet products
  • Animal feed
  • Fur
  • Auto parts
  • Batteries
  • Personal effects and more
Again, be sure to consult with commercial freight handlers, such as DGX,  to go over the required documents BEFORE making your shipping arrangement.

Understanding Japanese import requirements and documentation
Importantly, it’s important when doing business and commerce in Japan to understand import requirements and documentation such as:
  • The commercial invoice should be as descriptive as possible for each line item. The packing list should always include the exact contents and measurement of each pallet/container including the gross and net weight of each item. Be specific and free of spelling errors.
  • When completing customs documents, list each commodity separately, provide detailed description of each line item, including what it’s made of and how it will be used.
  • Keep multiple piece shipments together, label individually and package well.
  • Use heat treated pallets and wood packaging materials in compliance with ISPM 15.
  • Legibly print the commodity’s country of origin/manufacturer to indicate where your cargo was manufactured, grown or produced.
  • Always include contact information of the shipper and the consignee (contact person, phone number and email addresses) on your shipping documents.
  • Declare the accurate value for your item, even if it’s being provided to the recipient at no charge (for example, sample or not for resale).
  • Make sure information is consistent across all required customs documents.
When planning to import goods into Japan, the professionals at DGX -Dependable Global Express are ready to help. We have the experience, knowledge and reliability to ship your goods to Japan as smoothly and as safely as can be done.

We offer a wide variety of shipping services including cargo shipment by air, by oceanlogistics, oversize/project cargo, and when shipping hazardous materials to the job site. Door-to-door service is also available.   For any questions, please give us a call at 888.488.4888; or email us today for help with your shipment to Japan and a free rate quote!

Who offers warehousing with same day/next day delivery in Guam?

August 2, 2019
DGX-Dependable Global Express is now offering same day or next day delivery service to new and existing warehousing customers. Our Guam shipping operation is now providing local warehousing and same day/next day deliveries to customers.

Also new, customers who need multi-location warehousing with same day or next day delivery on Guam will now have access to tracking and inventory information. Thanks to a new software system, customers can now interface with their systems and ours, allowing access to inventory records, inbound/outbound data histories, order processing via direct entry into our new system, among other information and features.

The new inventory coordination will provide the locations of all your items we’re storing as well as an inventory of all items on hand. The system interfaces with established e-commerce software to ensure if you order the goods to be pulled, packed and shipped; we are able to get the job done within the same or next day.

Deliveries are currently made during normal weekday business hours, Monday through Friday 7:30AM to 4:30 PM, local time.

Same/next day service to your Guam Customers is now a reality. Contact us today to get a rate quote or use our convenient online rate quoter to get a rate quote for your Guam shipments.

Which is cheaper, shipping by air or ocean?

April 30, 2019
It could be either depending on your shipment and circumstances. It might surprise you that air shipping may very well be less expensive even though that’s contrary to supply-chain-savings logic because air shipping is traditionally a higher cost mode of transport than ocean freight.

Often, the economics of ocean freight shipping are less costly because of the relatively lower cost of transport, and, when shipping by ocean, economies of scale are achieved compared to an expensive aircraft capable of carrying only a fraction of the cargo.

However, not all shipments are created equal. Ocean shipping is not necessarily the overall least expensive shipping method. Air shipping will be least costly if a speedy and timely delivery is important. Consider the potentially high cost of not delivering your goods on time, per contractual agreements, resulting in lost sales, lost profits and/or lost opportunities. If products, materials, parts, samples, equipment or other vital components of your business do not arrive by agreed-upon deadlines, then there really is no cost savings of using slower, less expensive ocean shipping.

When considering whether to ship by air or sea, don’t forget the increased monetary opportunity being able to spread your products farther than you ever thought possible.

At DGX-Dependable Global Express, we specialize in International ocean freight, plus domestic and international air cargo shipping. If you need assistance, please reach out to your local office or call 888.488.4888 toll free and we can help you.

How much does it cost to ship LCL to Guam or Saipan?

April 8, 2019
There are six major items to consider in determining your overall cost to ship Less than Container Load (LCL) freight shipments to either Guam or Saipan.
  • Packaging
  • Commodity Being Shipped
  • Measurement of the Freight
  • Special Handling Considerations
  • Shipping Company Dependability
  • The Ocean Carrier the Shipping Company Selects to Move Your Shipment
More detail here:
  1. Packaging. Always package your shipments/product to minimize the total space used. LCL shipments are billed based on the space (cubic feet) they use. Saving space with your packaging or wrapping/crating, will determine how much it costs. For example, if you have a small broom you’re shipping, unscrew the handle and save the space by shipping it alongside the broom itself, instead of connected to it.

    Once you’ve minimized your packaging, however, don’t lose sight of proper wrapping and palletizing to avoid potential damage issues as your shipment is traveling thousands of miles in (sometimes) very rough seas.

  2. Commodity Being Shipped. Higher value goods will usually cost more than items of lower value. For instance, food products will cost less to ship than fine furniture based on the risk of damage. Items with a low damage factor will cost less than items that might normally get damaged easily.

    If you can find a freight forwarder to ship a fragile commodity (which usually means new, still in the packaging, not antique or glass, or other items of high value), factor in the cost of insurance. If the cargo is irreplaceable, you will want to pay more and have a crating expert package it. In the end, it’ll cost you less to get it there in one piece than in many.

  3. How to calculate freight shipment dimensions
  4. Measurement of the Freight. Ensure the dimensions of your shipment are accurate and complete. If you obtain a quote based on inaccurate or wrong dimensions, then the actual freight charges could cost you more. Your dimensions should include the highest point, the widest point and longest point of your shipment if palletized or in individual boxes.

    Cubic feet are computed by multiplying the length of the freight in inches by the height of the freight in inches by the width of the freight in inches. Those total inches then get divided by 1,728 inches to determine the total cubic feet of what you’re measuring. If you have multiple pallets, boxes or crates, this process needs to be followed for each pallet, box or crate and then all the cubic feet totaled. This then determines the size of your shipment for pricing purposes. If you palletize the freight, then measure the freight once nested on the pallet, using the same measurement process outlined above. Visit our FAQ #6 for detailed information on how to measure your shipment.

  5. Special Handling Considerations. Determine if your shipment will require special handling or delivery needs at the destination. Something requiring a residential delivery, or to a place of business with an inside delivery, will usually cost more than something delivered curbside. If you need trash taken away after your delivery, it’ll probably cost more if there’s a large volume.

  6. Shipping Company Dependability. Ensure you are working with a company such as DGX-Dependable Global Express, who is reliable and an expert at shipping to Guam or Saipan. The cheapest quote isn’t always the least expensive by the time your cargo has arrived at its destination. 

  7. The Ocean Carrier the Shipping Company Selects to Move Your Shipment. There are currently two ocean carriers moving shipments from the United States to Guam and Saipan.
    1. Matson Navigation Company (Matson) moves Guam and Saipan shipments/containers into Hawaii (from Seattle, Oakland and Los Angeles and intermodally). From Los Angeles, the container will be stowed on the vessel to go directly to Guam so it is not unloaded from one vessel and reloaded onto a second vessel in Hawaii. Oakland and the Pacific Northwest Guam containers get taken off the vessel in Hawaii and reloaded onto the vessel originally departing out of Los Angeles. The transit time out of Los Angeles to Guam via Matson is 11 days.
    2. American President Lines (APL) takes the containers to Yokohama, Japan, where they unload the containers off that vessel and a few days later reload them onto a feeder vessel into Guam and Saipan. Transit times are from Los Angeles and vary from 21 to 30 days, assuming all goes well and the container does have documentation necessary to transit the foreign port.
    DGX suggests not using APL due to their inconsistent transit times, to ensure that customers will know exactly when their cargo will arrive and keeping DGX a Dependable choice.
If your freight shipment is time-sensitive and needs to go to Guam quickly or you’re worried about damaging the contents of the container, we recommend Matson as your choice.

If it’s inventory replenishment items that can withstand loading and unloading through the various ports, and you can build the longer transit times into your logistical needs, we suggest APL. But be sure your products can be stowed and then re-handled in and out of containers through the various ports without damage. APL may work because the rates are less expensive.

If your forwarder is using APL to Guam or Saipan for your LCL shipment, consider DGX for more consistent transit times because we use Matson most often. As an LCL freight shipping company, DGX wants the container handling minimized so there is less chance for mishandling or damage.

To find out more about DGX and Dependable Supply Chain Services, please contact us today. With nearly 40 years in the shipping business, we can certainly help you in navigating these waters to get the best value and service for your goods.

What factors do you need to consider when shipping to China from the USA?

February 24, 2019
Due to the differences in the two countries’ political systems, shipping to China from the US can be challenging and confusing since China’s regulatory processes are controlled and dictated by a single-party governing body. New tariffs (especially retaliatory tariffs), customs regulations and other import related processes and regulations may be authorized and enacted with very little or even no grace period.

The Chinese government imposes tight restrictions on commodities such as personal effects, secondhand vehicles, liquor, tobacco, waste paper, dangerous goods, metal scrap, returned merchandise, etc. It is strongly recommended that you consult dependable transportation professionals at the origin and that they work with their counterparts in China to ensure every required document for imports into China are in place before the goods being shipped are en route. This will avoid consequences such as fines, delay of released goods, cargo abandonment and related costs. China Customs even has to right to confiscate your goods upon arrival at the destination.

Disputes on customs classification in China can be costly, lengthy and sometimes arbitrary while cargo is being held in China Customs. Appealing arbitrary customs decisions in China can prove to be difficult as the government grants relatively limited due process rights.

Should you need advice or consultation, the professionals at DGX - Dependable Global Express stand ready to help. We have the experience, knowledge and reliability to ship your goods to China as smoothly and safely as can be done. We offer a unique package of shipping services including cargo shipment by air or ocean, logistics, oversize/project cargo, hazardous materials, to the job site, door-to-door, Final Mile/Last Mile, White Glove, after hours/weekends and trade shows/conventions.

Give us a call today at 800.488.4888 and we’ll help answer questions and get you a rate quote!

What are air shipping freight rules to Australia?

January 3, 2019
Whether you’re shipping one order per year or managing an entire supply chain of goods from the USA to Australia, there are required customs rules and regulations specific to Australia that must be followed. For example:
  • All shipments must abide by the US Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA)
  • All shipments with solid wood packaging materials such as pallets, crates, shipping materials, dunnage, etc., must be properly stamped with ISPM 15 compliance markings.
Be sure the international freight forwarder you select has the expertise to make sure your shipment complies to all Australian shipping nuances.

Additionally, here are some of the benefits of air freight shipping to Australia:
  • Air shipping will move your cargo in hours vs. days, weeks, or even months compared to ocean shipping. Almost all major airlines today utilize modern, efficient aircraft fleets to carry passengers and air cargo over long hauls around the globe, with Australia being one of those key long-haul destinations.
  • Air shipping is also more likely to be on time due to air freight's networks and daily flight schedules.
  • Another benefit – unlike the perils of sea freight shipping, shipping by air is one of the safest modes of transportation today.
You will be happy to know air shipping to Australia is really quite simple. DGX - Dependable Global Express is an experienced, customer-service focused international freight forwarder that will responsibility to engage in navigating all aspects of the shipping rules. If you consider us, all of your freight forwarding and logistics details will be covered.

Contact us today or get a free online rate quote here.

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