Time is money. After all, you are an entrepreneur trying to sell products in the Netherlands and any delay means more costs. That is why you would like to know in advance how long it will take before your container(s) with goods will arrive in Rotterdam. Then you can take that into account and prepare yourself well in terms of paperwork.
China is an incredibly large country. The landmass is almost the same size as all of Europe. So if a factory is far inland, a travel time is needed to reach the port. For example, if the factory is located in Wuhan, it is still 850 km to Shanghai. But even if a factory is close to the coast, the travel time can still increase. This is because direct services to Rotterdam are only available from the largest ports. Otherwise, your container will first have to be taken to a large port with a smaller ship and transferred there.
The largest ports in China (and therefore the world)
7 of the 10 busiest ports measured in TEUs (container units) that are transported through or from there are in China. These are the following cities:
Shanghai, Shenzhen, Ningbo-Zhoushan, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Qingdao and Tianjin.
It is therefore recommended to do business with manufacturers located near these cities. If your forwarder does its job properly, the goods don’t have to be idle for long in the port.
How long does the flight from China to the Netherlands take?
China’s landmass is not only gigantic, the coastline is also very long. This stretches for approximately 14,500 km. Since ships have to circumnavigate Southeast Asia and India to reach Europe, it takes considerably longer from a northerly port like Tianjin or Qingdao than from a southerly port like Hong Kong or Shenzhen.
The difference can be up to 14 days. On average, assume the following times (at all times, formalities in the port can take 7 to 14 days):
- North China (Qingdao / Tianjin) – 31 to 36 days at sea.
- Central China (Shanghai / Ningbo-Zhoushan) – 26 to 31 days at sea.
- South China (Guangzhou / Shenzhen / Hong Kong) – 21 to 25 days at sea.
Gain insight into the total travel time with a customs broker
Customs-related formalities must be completed at the beginning and end of the journey. An invoice, a packing list, a bill of lading are a minimum part of this. Even more is needed for some special product categories. To avoid delays at customs, it is advisable to have the shipment of your goods handled by a forwarding agent. This is a party that specializes in legislation at home and abroad. He will be able to inform you about everything needed, how much it will cost and how long the whole process will take. Ademar BV from Rotterdam is a player with more than 40 years of experience. Mail or call us for advice for your company.