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Seven Top Tips for International Export and Import I wish I had known sooner

As your personal customs manager and worldwide trade professional, it is critical that I share these helpful hints with you; I wish I had known them sooner. It would have saved me a lot of time and aggravation. But, if it's too late for me, it can't be too late for you:-)

Here's a quick rundown of my top recommendations

Here is a handy summary of my top tips

  1. Accurate paperwork reduces the likelihood of complications and delays.

  2. Ensure that your company and the client have a written contract in place that outlines where the things will be delivered and who will be liable for each stage of the trip.

  3. You'll need paperwork for the product's shipping as well as travel insurance.

  4. Proper paperwork may be an important factor in receiving payment.

  5. Take into account the demands of both the country from which the commodities are exported and the country into which they are imported. Cooperate and, if required, seek support.

  6. You might wish to seek assistance with documentation. A freight forwarder is a service that many businesses utilise.

  7. Are you sure of your total landed cost?

Takeaway: Apply these tips to lessen the danger of border delays and costly compliance concerns. To discuss how book a free videocall.

Tip 1: Accurate commercial paperwork minimizes the risk of problems and delays

Correct documentation decreases the possibility of issues and delays. Many business owners make the most common mistake of neglecting to maintain all of their documents in order.

  • Is all of your information in one place?

  • Have you filled in all the blanks correctly and completely?

  • The lender may reject your application if any portions are missing. It will be delayed even if it is not rejected.

So, double-check that everything is in order before submitting any paperwork. This includes any tax documentation and permissions that the bank or lender may require, as well as all of your financial records, so that they may cross-reference them with their own databases. Check that all the information you give is correct. If you would like, we can do this for you, too. Just get in touch and drop a message in the chat.

Tip 2: You're Only As Good As Your Contracts, Draft Them Right

Make sure your organisation and the customer have a formal contract that specifies where the items will be delivered and who will be responsible for each stage of the journey.

As an export and import specialist, it is your responsibility to guarantee that things are delivered to your global consumers or that the commodities you bought arrive on time. This is easier said than done because a number of things may go wrong along the way. If you do not have sufficient terms and conditions in place with your customers and suppliers, your business may suffer.

Additionally, ensure that your organisation and the customer have a formal contract in place that specifies where the items will be delivered and who will be responsible for each point of the journey. The contract must be clear and clarify who would pay for any additional storage or shipping costs that may arise.

Tip 3: Think about the “other” paperwork: Transportation, Insurance and Customs Documents

You'll need documents for the products' transportation, as well as insurance for the travel. A classic document is the CMR road transport documentation. If you are interested to learn on how to complete the top eight export documents, please see our blog here.

During the transport, you need to consider if there are any restrictions on the items' movement. Import or export licences may be required.

For example, some goods may be prohibited from crossing certain borders. lf so, many products are subject to specific requirements and regulations related to their transportation and storage.

Meeting these regulations will require proper planning and preparation. We can help with that.

Tip 4: Think About Getting Paid Early On: When and How.

Documents are also required in order to get paid. Make certain that they are in place in international trading.

Getting paid overseas is not the same as getting paid at home. You must be able to offer the necessary documentation to establish exactly what you sold in order to get reimbursed for it.

For customers from other countries, the issue of fraud and counterfeit goods is a genuine worry. So, while selling internationally, don't expect to get paid based on your delivery date or the day your goods were transported overseas. Instead, remember that payment will be contingent on your ability to produce the necessary documentation on time.

Documents are also required in order to get paid. Ensure that they are all in place for foreign trading.

Tip 5: Import Your Products Safely and Avoid Potential Losses Due to Customs

Consider both the needs of the country from which the commodities are exported and the needs of the country into which they are imported. Cooperate and, if required, seek support.

Many particular restrictions control the import and export of various items, and they range from nation to country. You must ensure that you completely grasp the legislation in effect in each nation, or you risk getting into serious problems.

Some items, such as agricultural commodities and foodstuffs, are subject to limitations. Certain things, however, are prohibited from being exported or imported under any circumstances. Antiques, endangered animal species, guns, and drugs are among them. It is critical that you know what you are capable of shipping before you do so.

We have a dedicated section on export controls on our expert blog as well as on the import requirements for food. There is also dedicated customs training on worry-free export and import controls that you can book here.

Tip 6: Use The Right Freight Forwarder

You might wish to seek assistance with paperwork. A freight forwarder is a service that many businesses utilise. Look for a freight forwarder who has handled similar imports in the past. A professional freight forwarder will be able to answer your queries and handle the majority of the paperwork for you.

The freight forwarder's role is to coordinate the transportation of products between two sites. This includes the following

  • reserving cargo space on ships, planes, or other modes of transportation

  • ensuring that cargo arrives at the correct location, at the appropriate time, and at the lowest possible cost

  • dealing with customs clearance. You may need to issue clear instructions. We have created a dedicated customs broker management course that you may wish to study.

  • delivering additional specialised services

  • a variety of financial services, such as loss or damage insurance

A good freight forwarder may be the difference between successful and failed international trade. A freight forwarder's primary responsibility is to coordinate the transportation of your cargo, but they often offer other services such as customs clearance, insurance, and tracking.

Choosing a reputable freight-forwarding agent might be a daunting endeavour if you're new to international shipping, or even if you're not. There are various differences in service and pricing, so it's crucial to know what to look for when deciding on a good one.

No more snafus! There will be no extraneous duties! There will be no more wrongly filled Customs Declarations. We'll explain how!

Tip 7: Consider The Costs Besides The Price Tag

What does it cost to buy from a foreign country?

You must examine the entire landing expenses before making a selection. If the only essential aspect was the price offered per unit, it would not be necessary to evaluate the other factors that might affect the total landed cost. However, any smart logistics manager will tell you that there is more to consider than the sticker price.

Importing from another nation is not as straightforward as purchasing a product and having it delivered to your doorstep. Shippers face challenges due to probable delays, greater freight expenses, and the possibility of damage or loss during the long voyage overseas. Duties, taxes, demurrage adjustments, municipal taxes, clearing charges, and other fees must also be considered.


Shipping items internationally can be a daunting task, not just because of the distance involved but also due to the difficulty in working with individual governments and trying to communicate what needs to be done, when and by whom.

It's important to know all the steps you need to take and all the documents required, as well as make sure that you get all of them right. These seven tips are the first step to help you export and import internationally with success.

Are You Up To Date?

Your job, on the other hand, requires you to be up to date on any changes in customs and export legislation.

As your dedicated Customs Manager, I will also keep you up to date on current developments that are relevant to your everyday issues, as well as upcoming opportunities and hazards, through our regular professional blog information service.

When you read professional blogs, you will get

  • Recommendations for action in the context of import & export transaction processing

  • Avoiding import & export mistakes: protection against financial fines or losses

  • Make the most use of all customs and preferential procedures to save money.

  • Instructions and templates for working with systems and documents in a step-by-step manner

  • Exemplifications from import and export practice make it simple for you to apply what you've learned to your position and duties right away.

  • Tips and strategies for securing your company's finances

Then go ahead and request immediate access to the whole expert blog, with all barriers removed. presently. Try it out for free for 30 days. We compile the most recent and important information for you and provide it to you in a practical and beneficial, brief and transparent manner.

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We are always pleased to write about themes that are important to you, and your recommendations may easily be included in our work. In fact, some of the most popular entries on our blog were created just for clients, such as "How to reimport repaired items overseas without paying customs charge."

We also have dozens of blog entries in the works that need to be written. We try our best to prioritise these depending on their importance to our clients' enterprises. As our partner, please submit an issue that is important to you. E-mail or write us in the chat.

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