Six months after the resolution of the lengthy labor dispute with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, 美国西海岸的港口, 以及全国其他主要港口, continue to experience congestion that is resulting in significant delays in shipments destined for trade shows.
Trade show managers and exhibitors face ongoing concerns about the congestion that is becoming increasingly common at the nation's largest ports. Container volume has steadily increased over the past two years and is now at an all-time high on the East Coast. 巨大的船只, carrying more than twice the average number of containers in the past, 正在阻塞港口的资源吗, 哪些是多年前为小型货船设计的. This cargo spike is creating daily delays in the loading and unloading of freight. 卡车司机等待集装箱的时间长达6-8个小时, as the elevated volume burdens the freight handling and inspection processes. Long truck lines extending for a mile or two are frequently seen at Port Newark/Elizabeth, 洛杉矶和其他港口也出现了类似的延误. 司机的数量正在下降, since many of them are becoming dismayed by these problems that are causing a pinch in their own pockets.
Outdated port infrastructure is also a contributing factor as well as chassis shortage issues. 轮式底盘是用来运输集装箱的设备. This combination of factors is continuing to create port congestion, placing pressure on the carriers and the brokers to ensure containers are released at the last minute to make a show's deadlines.
菲尔·霍布森说, 凤凰国际商务物流总裁, “给经理 , exhibitors and display design companies are asking me if it's back to normal in the aftermath of the West Coast strike. I have to tell them that while the West Coast no longer suffers from the extreme gridlock conditions, 我国的港口仍然非常紧张. And this congestion is continuing to impact trade show shipments coming into the 美国. We are coping with huge vessels arriving in ports with infrastructure that is not equipped to handle the bigger volume efficiently. 底盘仍然短缺. 此外，我们还面临卡车司机短缺的问题. I am advising trade show managers to alert international exhibitors about the potential delays with sea freight entering the 美国. 反过来, these managers are now encouraging exhibitors to find a Customs Broker that is highly experienced with trade shows, so an exhibitor is well-informed about the timing and routing now required for on-time shipments."
更具体地说,先生. 霍布森解释说, "亚搏手机在线登录 works with international exhibitors at scores of shows and we've been developing new guidelines for the shipment of cargo by sea. 在过去, full container shipments could arrive 8 days before a show's move-in date and you could reasonably expect the container to clear Customs and be delivered by the target date. 今天, we have to add on 3-5 days to that original timing in order to achieve the same expected outcome - a 99.9%的成功准时到达展会现场. For LCL (less than container load) shipments to have that same success rate, we're now telling customers that exhibits should arrive 20-25 days in advance of the move-in date.
"We will always work to our maximum capacity to get shipments cleared in time for a show, 即使时间比理想的短，港口延误. 我们当然保持了出色的准时率. But we do want to share with the trade show importing community the increasing importance of shipping earlier. And it's even more vital now to choose an experienced Customs broker who can navigate trade show conditions. While we certainly pull off our share of miracles, it's getting more challenging every day. 罢工可能已经结束，但交通拥堵仍然存在."
There's also the matter of additional costs associated with containers arriving earlier, 如仓储和底盘租赁费用. 根据先生. Hobson, "It's a risk-reward relationship when you ship exhibits by sea to the U.S. 在今天的港口气候下. Freight forwarders who handle trade show shipments are now competing with large retailers like Walmart for drivers. 我们知道错过一个贸易展览是不可想象的, 昂贵的发生, while the addition of storage expenses is a new budgetary concern. Exhibitors are definitely facing some new realities about trade show shipments." As the nation works towards making the investment required to improve port infrastructure, 以及努力解决底盘和司机的问题, it's up to the trade show industry to adapt to the shipment delays being caused by the current state of port congestion. Mr. 霍布森给出了以下建议:
Get in touch very early with your show's appointed freight forwarder or a U.S. 他是贸易展览会的专家.
Understand the costs associated with storage and chassis rental if you're being advised to ship earlier than in prior years. While it may increase your budget, it may be a necessary step to ensure on-time exhibit arrival.