June 2022 State of Freight
June 21, 2022

June is upon us.  It’s time for sunny days and vacations.  Regardless of your summer fun plans, the ports stay open, and the shipping lanes are as busy as ever.

Asia Ports

The big news is that Shanghai is back up and running for business…. somewhat. June 2022 sees the port and city open again and not a minute too soon for surrounding ports that were bearing the load.  With the opening of Shanghai, congestion at surrounding ports, specifically Yantian/Shenzhen port, will begin to ease and we should start seeing fewer rolling schedules.  The virus however is far from over and portions of Shanghai may shut down periodically for mass Covid Testing.

West Coast US Ports

The West Coast continues to have a backlog of container ships waiting to berth from the LAX port to Prince Rupert port in Canada.  The past 2 years have seen the entire West Coast struggle to keep up with the supply chain and although the backlog is becoming smaller, the West Coast still isn’t out of the woods yet. Labor contract negotiations should be wrapping up this month, but whether there will be an agreement, or a long fight remains to be seen.  Power outages have been plaguing the West Coast rail causing significant delays in transit times to major inland hubs such as Indianapolis and Chicago. Continue to expect delays when shipping any goods to the West Coast.  A 40’ or 40’HQ container shipping to this coast is currently running about $20,000 port-to-door delivery.  You should continue to factor in delays when planning your transit times.  You will need about 45 days from port to door from China to California door.  If your goods are continuing to Chicago, factor in a 60-day transit time port to door.

East Coast Ports

So far, the East Coast ports have been the place to send your goods.  They have been keeping the backlogs down and getting goods delivered in a timely fashion.   That may not be the case for much longer.  In the past months, more customers have been choosing to route their shipments through the East Coast to avoid the congestion on the west.  Many ocean lines have also cut some West Coast ports from their voyages for the same reasons.  Now the East Coast is starting to see congestion at their ports when there previously was none.  Some East Coast ports are now seeing wait times of up to 10 days before vessels are called in.  They are still experiencing the same trucker, chassis, and labor shortages that they were last year, only the volume coming in through the East Coast has increased and the shortages are now becoming apparent.   Be prepared for longer than usual waits on the East Coast.  A 40’ or 40’HQ container shipping to this coast is currently around $18,000 port to door.  Transit times are around 60 days.

Air Shipments

With soaring fuel costs, air shipping is becoming less of an option.  Shipping via air was already an expensive mode of transport before the Ukraine/Russian war.  Now with sanctions and rising fuel costs, air shipping is extremely pricey and not cost effective.  Air shipments are not recommended by GPI’s freight department.

Final Thought

Place your POs while you can!! Peak shipping season is coming up in August which is the perfect time to ship your holiday goods! With 60 day ocean transit times, you can’t afford to wait!!!

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