How To Choose The Right Customs Broker And Freight Forwarder?
There are many things you need to consider every New Year to improve your business operations. As you evaluate your business strengths and weaknesses, don’t forget to consider the impact of a good customs broker and freight forwarder. If you assess your overall productivity for the previous year, you will notice how much your partnership with your customs broker has helped your output. One of the factors that actually result in a poor business output is a partnership with an unskilled customs broker. You don’t want to fall victim to these types of brokers, so ask yourself the following questions before choosing a customs broker that will rightly serve you to boost your business productivity.
#1: How many ports do I want to operate from?
The best choice of a customs broker, if you are actually importing from several ports, is one that has an office located close to those ports. Local one-office brokers will not be able to effectively serve you if the port you want to use is outside their region. They will lose a great deal of control and usually delegate sub-agents of other ports. You can hire a one-port broker if you are importing through only one port because they will usually offer you more personalized and hands-on service. If your horizon is across a couple of ports in the U.S you may consider using Clearit USA customs clearance as a reliable partner.
#2: Is my import type or product line specialized?
Not all customs brokers can handle importation of all types of products. For example, when you deal in products like apparel, textiles and alcoholic beverages, you should hire a customs broker that is well grounded in the laws and regulations that applies to the importation of such product. You can run into a big loss and trouble when you choose the wrong customs broker who does not know much about the importation policies of the particular product you deal in.
#3: Can this partner offer automated services?
There are many tools used by a customs broker or freight forwarder to partner with a company. Consider the freight forwarder you are hiring to ensure that they are able to provide you with the copies of documents filed in the AES on your behalf. Make sure you make corrections to any errors you detect in the document as soon as possible. Your broker must have access to various web portals and cargo tracking systems and not only to U.S Customs. They must also communicate with you with ease via e-mail, fax, and telephone.