top of page

Underlying value on Choosing the Cheapest Rates

Importers like to minimize their shipping costs, and that’s understandable. But while we understand the importance of price, there is more to the story many small to medium-sized companies often miss as they scour the internet for the cheapest transactional freight rate to move their product/s. What’s often missed is the underlying value they have within the fine print or not published within any shipping quote. Choosing the cheapest rate usually means sacrificing efficient service. Savings get eaten up very quickly when problems start to arise.

Factors to Consider:


Freight forwarders offering cheap rates don’t have systems that allow you to track your shipment in real time –usually because they don’t invest in the technology or the internal procedures to follow your shipments efficiently.


When a freight forwarder charges cheap rates, they do not allocate enough experienced staff, often leading to increased demurrage, detention, and other avoidable fees.


Cheap forwarders usually don’t have a deep bench on their team. They provide drayage, warehousing, long-haul trucking, and last-mile distribution on an ad hoc basis. It’s not efficient, usually frustrating, and unpredictable. No one would choose this kind of system, but often it’s too late when you find out.


Inexpensive forwarders don’t communicate well with importers. They’ve delivered cheap rates, and more often than not that’s where their responsibility and responsiveness ends.


They can’t provide priority service to their clients. Often cargo is rolled or moved on less-than-optimal carriers and routes.


Cheap rates don’t build relationships. You won’t get proactive advice or innovation from a random provider.


When you choose cheap rates you will only get what you pay for or less. You cannot expect top-of-the-line services.

These factors are important considerations to ensure you are able to find the best fit for both service and price, not to steer shippers to higher rates, but to understand the fine print often behind the “cheapest freight rate” which best often translates to problems and issues when there is a hiccup in service or hidden charges. When everything is flowing without a hitch the cheapest rates make us feel like we have made the correct choice, but when an issue arises it often comes as a surprise because the freight buyer was not aware of the fine print and the problem may become all-encompassing.

If you'd like to discuss how Image International Freight can help with competitive yet great service for your freight requirements contact our sales team today to discuss your particular requirements, call +61 2 9773 1378 or email


bottom of page