How to choose… a freight forwarder?
01/10/2019 - admin
Previously we covered the criteria for choosing a provider of transport services, a carrier. However, it is not the only option in this respect. You can also use freight forwarding services provider that commissions transportation to a carrier on your behalf. It is down to the freight forwarder to select a carrier that meets all the criteria of efficient transportation service. What about the verification of a freight forwarder? We would also suggest taking a closer look at it.
- Company’s experience
Once again, company’s experience does matter. A freight forwarder with two years of experience is more credible than one with two months’ experience. There are many companies that take up freight forwarding, accept clients’ loads, commission their transportation to carriers, and then disappear as soon as they receive payment from the client, without paying the carriers’ invoices. Soon another company comes up with a new Tax Identification Number (NIP) and the exact same modus operandi. It might be worth checking, since probably no one would wish to become a link in the fraud chain.
- Licences required
In Poland, in order to operate road transportation services related to intermediation in transportation of goods, one needs to obtain the “Licence for Road Transportation within the Scope of Intermediation in the Carriage of Goods”, commonly known as the freight forwarding licence. Similarly to the carriage licence, it also has an expiration date that must be verified.
Civil Liability of a Forwarder (OCS) is a policy which compensates for the damage caused by the wrong choice of a carrier for your commission. Once again, the most important aspects that must be verified are the expiration date, insurance value, territorial scope, exclusions and special conditions. It is important to make sure that OCS also covers the so-called Civil Liability of a Contracting Carrier (OCPU). Why is it important? Freight forwarders and clients very often conclude carriage contracts instead of forwarding contracts and, as a result, if those contracts do not contain the OCPU clause, forwarding is not covered by insurance, which means that you are at risk. It is a very common mistake in the industry, but it is a different story that we can cover in a separate post.