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Australia Container Shipping
Australia Container Shipping

Ocean Or Air Freight Shipping To Or From Australia

Whether you’re moving to Australia and are looking to transport your car and personal household effects, or you’re moving equipment or products for your business, A-1 Auto Transport is here to help.

We’re always ready to assist customers with ocean or air freight container shipping to Australia. With our years of experience and international connections, we can help you get your shipments sent to Australia quickly and easily. We offer FCL and LCL container shipping on ocean freight ships as well as air freight shipping – so you can choose the shipping option that’s the best for you. Read on to learn more, or contact us now for a free quote for ocean or air freight container shipping to Australia.

FCL Container Shipping (Full Container Load) To Australia

FCL (Full Container Load) shipping refers to an ocean-going shipment that takes up the entire volume and cargo capacity of a standard 20-foot or 40-foot shipping container. If your shipment is large enough to take up the entire capacity of a shipping container, FCL container shipping is likely the best choice for you.

Even if your load is not quite large enough for FCL shipping, it may be the best choice if you want to speed up transit and simplify logistics, compared to LCL (less than container load) shipping. This is because, unlike LCL container shipping, you won’t need to share your cargo capacity with anyone else – which speeds up the overall delivery of your goods.

LCL Container Shipping (Less Than Container Load) To Australia

If you have a large freight shipment that needs to be sent to Australia but you do not need the full capacity of FCL container shipping, LCL (Less than Container Load) shipping is right for you.

As the name implies, this method of shipping uses a single shipping container, which may be shared with multiple customers. Each customer has their shipment loaded into the same container, and then it’s sent to the destination port and loaded onto a freight ship.

Instead of being changed for a flat rate for the entire 20 or 40-foot cargo container, you’ll be charged a rate based on the volume of your items – if you’re taking up 50% of a 20-foot container, for example, you’ll be billed accordingly.

Because you can share the cost of a single cargo container with other businesses and individuals who are shipping freight, the overall cost of LCL shipping is typically much lower than FCL shipping. It’s a great option for smaller companies that need to ship items to Australia cost-effectively.

Ocean Freight Transport To Australia

Both LCL and FCL transport are a method of ocean freight transport. Ocean freight transport involves packing up your items into a standard shipping container, which is sent to a destination port. Then, your shipment will be loaded into a large, ocean-going freighter. A modern freight ship can usually carry over 21,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units).

Depending on the freighter, the ship may go directly to your destination port, or it may have multiple stops. Ocean freight transport usually takes somewhere between 20-45 days, depending on the location where your freight was loaded, and the location of your destination port.

Air Freight Transport To Australia

Air freight transport is a much better option if you need to ship items to Australia very quickly. Express air freight is very expensive, but can send your items within 1-3 days. Typical, standard-rate air freight shipping usually has a delivery time of about 3-5 days.

Unlike ocean-going shipments, price is not determined by the volume of your items. Airplanes are too small for traditional containers. Instead, you’ll pay a flat fee based on the weight of your freight shipment.

While it is much faster to ship goods by air freight, it’s always much more expensive to do so – ocean shipping is slower, but a lot more cost-effective for most shipments.

How Much Does It Cost To Ship To Australia?

The cost of shipping your goods to Australia will depend on a number of different factors:

  • Method of transport – Air transport is much faster than ocean transport, but usually costs 4-5x more. If you have a time-sensitive shipment, it’s a good option – but for shipments that are not time-sensitive, shipping items via ocean freight will save you a lot of money.
  • Volume or weight of the cargo – In ocean shipping, the volume of your cargo (the size of the shipping container or the number of shipping containers) determines how much you’ll pay. Whether you have a 20-foot container that weighs 10,000 lbs or 40,000, you’ll pay the same amount.

But for air freight, you’ll pay based on weight, rather than the volume of your cargo, so it may cost a lot more to ship very heavy items by air. 

FCL or LCL – Since an LCL load can be shipped alongside other cargo from other customers, it’s usually cheaper than an FCL load. However, it may take longer to ship, especially if cargo is being unloaded at multiple ports.

  • The distance of journey – The farther your cargo is going, the more you’ll pay due to labor costs, fuel costs, wear & tear on ships, airplanes and cargo equipment, and more. Shorter trips will be cheaper, while long shipments will be more expensive.
  • Time of year – Peak shipping season usually happens twice per year – between August and September, and again between January and February. At these times, shipping capacity is more limited, resulting in higher prices.

Wondering how much you’ll pay? Get in touch with A-1 Auto Transport now. We can provide you with an estimate for your shipping needs – and if you like what you hear, we can start working on the logistics of shipping your goods to Australia right away.

Shipping Ports In Australia

Wondering what your options are for ocean freight container shipping to Australia? Here are a few of the largest shipping ports in Australia. Depending on the end destination for your cargo, any of these ports may be a good option for shipping your goods.

Port of Brisbane – The Port of Brisbane is the largest seaport in Queensland, and it handles more than 28 million tonnes of cargo and 2,600 ships per year.

  • Port of Sydney – Located in Botany Bay, New South Wales, this port is the second-busiest container port in the country. It handles more than 1,700 vessel arrivals per year, and has 270 available berths.
  • Port of Fremantle – Port of Fremantle is located in Western Australia, and it’s the busiest and largest port in the state. It operates 24/7, and handled more than 34.5 million tonnes of cargo in 2019.
  • Port of Melbourne – The busiest port in Victoria, the Port of Melbourne handles more than 3,000 ships per year, and nearly 3 million TEU (twenty-foot cargo units) per year.
  • Port of Hedland – The Port of Hedland is the largest port in all of Australia and Oceania, handling an average of 2,447 yearly vessels and more than 372 million tonnes of cargo.

Customs Clearance In Australia

Customs clearance in Australia is relatively straightforward, and we will work with you and with Australian customs authorities to ensure that your shipments move through the process as quickly as possible.

Unless you are importing only personal goods, it’s likely that you will have to pay a 10% GST on the goods you import. In addition, you will need to fill out an Import Declaration. Your goods may be held, inspected and quarantined during the customs clearance process, depending on what you’re bringing in.

Note, also, that certain items – like explicit content, weapons and ammunition, and some types of animal goods – are not legally allowed to be imported into Australia, and could cause legal and logistical difficulties. For more information about importing and exporting and the customs clearance process, you can click here for a detailed overview from the Government of Australia.

Get A Free Price Rate Quote For Shipping To Australia

At A-1 Auto Transport, we offer free price rate quotes for all of our customers. Whether you’re interested in FCL or LCL air or ocean freight, we can provide you with all of the information you need to price out your shipping project.

A-1 Auto Transport ships worldwide. Click Here or call to get a free, no obligation to buy, price quote for your shipment.
Joe Webster
Written By:Joe Webster
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Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing. 

After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood. 

With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.

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A-1 Auto Transport is a disclosed agent for the following shipping companies:

Trans Global Auto Logistics, Inc.
3401 E Randol Mill Rd
Arlington, TX 76011
NO. 018191NF
CFR Rinkens
15501 Texaco Avenue
Paramount, CA 90723
NO. 013055NF
ABC Worldwide LLC
2840 NW 2nd Ave #105
Boca Raton, FL 33431
NO. 025472F
CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
ShipYourCarNow LLC
1160 South Rogers Circle Suite 1
Boca Raton, FL 33487
NO. 025646
Merco Air & Ocean Cargo, Inc.
6 Fir Way
Cooper City, FL 33026
NO. 021869F
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