The September 2022 State of Freight
September 12, 2022

Peak shipping season is in full swing and the holidays are creeping around the corner, but will your goods arrive in time to make the hustle and bustle?  Let’s find out in this month’s State of Freight!

Border crossings are still a big issue in China and Hong Kong requiring extensive documentation and long wait times to cross borders as Covid continues to wreak havoc across the land.  Despite China’s strict no Covid policies and lockdowns, ports are teeming with activity as exports pour out of factories to the world beyond.  Continue to expect rolling schedules.  Ports of departure may be different than where you usually ship out, but make no mistake, the Asian ports are operating full steam ahead and up for the challenge.

Vessels are beginning to see longer wait times on the East Coast depending on the port you’re sailing into.   Ports such as NJ/NYC and Savannah are starting to experience wait times of up to 2 weeks before berthing, while Florida, Virginia, and North Carolina have less than a week’s wait.   Factor in some buffer time when promising delivery to your customers to make up for the time spent at the port.

The story is the same for the West Coast.  Wait times at LAX, LGB, and even Seattle and Montreal have become increasingly better than earlier this year, only showing 0 – 5 days of wait time upon arrival.  You’ll want to settle in for the long haul if you’re shipping to Oakland or Vancouver though.  Wait times at these ports are starting to go over 3 weeks.

Beware if your goods need to board the rail.  Whether it’s the East Coast or West Coast, the freight trains are experiencing heavy volumes all over the country.  Crew and chassis shortages are plaguing the railroads causing delays and backups.  The threat of a strike in the coming weeks threatens a shutdown of all national freight railroads.  GPI will keep you posted as to whether an agreement can be reached.

Although chassis shortages have been a problem throughout the year, trucking continues to push the limits.  Deliveries still appear to be making it to their destinations on time once the goods are released from port.

I know this update hasn’t been the cheery news you were seeking, but I’ve just noticed that container prices are beginning to come down this week!  They’re currently lower than I’ve seen them in the past 2 years, so here’s to hoping that trend continues!!!

If you have any questions regarding your specific shipment with GPI, please don’t hesitate to contact me.  I’ll be glad to walk you through your shipment and let you know what state your freight is in.

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