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What is FCL (Full Container Load)?

What is FCL (Full Container Load)?

In shipping and transportation, FCL (full container load) is when a company uses a container in its entirety for transporting the freight. The term FCL is most commonly used for sea freight. When an exporter hires the entire container, it does not necessarily mean the container is full, it simply means the shipment does not share the container space with any other goods. The exporter has exclusive rights to the entire container; whereas in LCL (less than container-load), the exporter hires space in a container, as opposed to the entire container, meaning the space in the container is shared by the goods of other exporters.

How does FCL (Full Container Load) shipping work?
Step 1: Bookingshipment – Contact the logistics service provider and book the FCL shipment. Provide the relevant shipment specifications and details to the project cargo forwarder. The service provider then arranges for the entire shipment to be transported as per the specified needs.

Step 2: Preparing the consignment for shipping – The freight forwarder starts preparing the shipment by getting all the goods in order to initiate packaging, which is then securely shipped.

Step 3: ‘Drayage’ – As soon as the goods are packed into the container, they are ‘drayed’ or transported towards the port from where all the goods are exported.

Stage 4: Transit – Once at the port, the FCL shipment goes through the process of transit to its desired destination.

Stage 5: Pickup/ delivery – Once the shipment arrives at the destination port, the goods are off-loaded from the vessel. Special transport arrangements are made to deliver the goods either to the warehouse or to their final point of destination.

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