What is full container load? 

When exporters and importers transport large volumes of freight via containers, they employ a shipping mode known as FCL or full container load. Along with LCL (or less than container load), FCL is one of the most often used terminologies in ocean freight.

In full container load shipping, the sender (consignor or shipper) hires a full shipping container for their freight transportation. This does not imply that they must fill the container area completely. It is more true to state that they own the container exclusively for their freight.

FCL shipping is often a preferred choice by large retail chains with frequent shipping requirements including eCommerce giants like Amazon, Walmart, etc.

Full Container Load (FCL) v/s Less-than Container Load (LCL)

Full Container Load (FCL) is one of the most cost-effective options for freight transportation globally. For shipments with a volume of more than 13 m3, a full container load is comparatively less expensive than LCL.

With LCL shipping, containers often have consolidated shipments from multiple freight forwarders. This adds to the time of shipping due to multiple un/loading. With full container load (FCL), as the shipper is transporting a full load at once, cargo is typically loaded and unloaded only once, resulting in a shorter transit time than LCL. It also saves operational costs, time, and other resources.

Moreover, the danger of contamination from other cargo is minimized greatly with FCL shipments. Cotton clothing, for example, may smell if stored in the same container as spices or chemicals. Shipping FCL prevents this from happening.

Full container load is an ideal option for special cargo, like:

Quote for Full Container Load (FCL)

In full container load shipping, you pay a commodities box rate, which is a flat charge for the container. A typical FCL quote includes:

  • Charges for picking up the container from the warehouse
  • Terminal handling fees (storage, equipment) at the origin port
  • Ocean freight is the expense of a ship’s passage
  • Terminal handling fees at the destination port
  • Delivery fees for trucking the cargo to the destination warehouse
  • Other additional charges (demurrage & detention fees, chassis surcharge, etc.)

While FCL may seem costlier than LCL, considering the quantity of freight being shipped, full container load (FCL) is a more feasible and cost-effective option in the long run.

Full container load (FCL) ships to destinations worldwide. It carries your cargo regardless of the size, dimensions, or volume of your goods. Services are provided in accordance with industry standards and specific requirements of the clients. Furthermore, with full container load shipping, freight is delivered on time and at a reasonable rate.

Terms related to full container load

About Container xChange

Container xChange simplifies the logistics of global trade. We connect all logistics companies through our neutral online infrastructure that connects all logistics companies. Whether you’re in the business of leasing or trading equipment or want to be on top of all container movements, Container xChange supports simplifying and automating those processes. Want to learn more about leasing at xChange? Click here for more information. Interested in trading? Learn more here.