Many people do not clearly understand the concept of NVOCC and whether it is different from a shipping company, logistics, or freight forwarding company. In this article, let's find out what NVOCC is and how it is different from a freight forwarder.


I. What is NVOCC?

NVOCC is the abbreviation for the phrase "Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier", which means "Common carrier that does not own the ship".



NVOCC is a type of shipping business/company, considered as a carrier, but unlike shipping lines, they do not own any ships. Instead, NVOCC will rent space or buy cargo transportation services from shipping lines, and provide the service to their customers. These companies can issue House bills of lading to customers, provide tariff rates, and have the ability to sign service contracts with shipping lines.

NVOCC acts as a transportation intermediary, similar to a Freight Forwarder, except that NVOCC contracts directly with the shipper to transport containers but does not typically own the warehouse (as opposed to a freight forwarder, which acts as the customer's agent to book the shipment for carriage, but will usually have access to its warehouse).


II. What is the function of an NVOCC?

Just plays as an intermediary, so why do companies choose NVOCC, why don't they directly get in touch with the shipping lines? Indeed, the chances of hearing back from NVOCC are far greater than a shipping line and it is much more flexible and attentive to the requirements of small businesses. They're likely to fix you the most cost-effective shipping at low freight rates. Some of the main scope of NVOCC's responsibilities include:

  • Concluding international goods carrier contracts as carriers with the shippers.
  • Delivering and receiving cargo in the form of carriers.
  • Issuing various transport documents along with the House Bill of Lading.
  • Handling booking space as well as the mainline carrier shipping.
  • Arranging payments for transportation between port to port along with other essential charges.
  • Consolidation as well as deconsolidation of containers using third-party services or through Container Freight Station (CFS).


III. Who is a freight forwarder?

A freight forwarder is a supply chain expert who arranges for the seamless movement of cargo. And they do that by arranging and facilitating the transportation of your goods via different modes: ocean, rail, air, or road. The only golden rule about freight forwarders is that they are not the ones moving your cargo, only arranging for it.

Exporting goods is not easy with way too many steps, documents, and certificates to clear. It's almost impossible for novice exporters to know all about these. So when you're hiring a freight forwarder, you're basically paying them to get all of these in order. As a result, in many instances, the freight forwarders are referred to as 'shippers' to the ocean carriers.


IV. Key differences of NVOCC versus Freight Forwarder

Now we know the definition and function of NVOCC and freight forwarders, there are some same functions between them, but they're still not the same entities. Confused? The basic differences between NVOCC and freight forwarders lie in the kind of relationship they have with shippers and other players:

  • An NVOCC acts as a middleman between the shipper and the vessel operator and also issues its bills of lading. Whereas, a freight forwarder is authorized by the shipper to act and make decisions on their behalf.
  • Another major difference between NVOCC and a freight forwarder is that you (exporter/importer) always appoint the freight forwarder to act as your agent, whereas you'll employ the services of NVOCC as a carrier.



ASL Logistics US - Your True Shipping Partner

We are a Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier (NVOCC). Therefore, we make it easy for you to find an ideal vessel for your freight by providing multiple options and helping you choose one that's right for your business. We balance our network and leverage our relationships to provide you with the most flexible ocean options in the industry. ASL can maximize your routing and transit options by managing your ocean shipments door-to-door with ease, visibility, and global reach. Choose from our flexible ocean freight services based on your timing, cargo size, and equipment needs.


Reach ASL Logistics US immediately for advice on sea freight service! Or you can contact us directly to receive detailed information:

⚓ ASL Logistics US - Your True Shipping Partner

📍 https://aslc-us.com/

 ☎ +1 56 2906 3906

 ✉ phong@aslc-us.com


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