Prepare early for Chinese New Year

To avoid bottlenecks, communication with a. hartrodt should take place until mid-December.

Due to Chinese New Year on 25 January 2020, Far East transports have to be prepared now while the Christmas business is running at full speed. "Customers with Chinese imports and exports should contact us by mid-December at the latest. Otherwise they risk capacity bottlenecks," warns Peter Zink, Business Development Manager Middle East and Greater China at a. hartrodt in Frankfurt. He expects a constant high utilization of air and sea freight capacity until Chinese New Year.

Blank sailings before Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year will be eleven days earlier than 2019. Zink also expects shipping lines to cancel departures on the Asia-Europe trade at short notice. The reason for the blank sailings: The fleets must be adapted for lower sulphur oxide emissions, IMO 2020 will come into force on 1 January 2020. For this reason, a. hartrodt recommends providing all relevant information at least three weeks before the cargo ready date.

Clarify before Christmas

The cargo volume will rise sharply around the Chinese holidays, at the same time capacities in sea and air freight will be reduced. "It is therefore important to clarify the booking situation before Christmas," advises Zink. That makes sure that the experts at a. hartrodt can draw up shipping plans in good time and plan urgent air freight.

"The booking situation for airfreight imports from China will be coming to a head at the beginning of January," says Zink. At the hubs in Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei, Hong Kong and Guangzhou, local teams from a. hartrodt consolidate air freight which is regularly flown to Europe. "Thanks to long-term airline contracts, we can plan better," explains Zink. Air freight exports also benefit from this. Due to lower demand in China, during and after the holidays flight schedule changes or cancellations may occur.

Alternatively, a. hartrodt offers departures on block trains between China and Germany several times a week. The trains also run during Chinese New Year.