NMFC & Freight Class
Remember, you can lower your overall freight costs with the proper weight, NMFC and Freight Class. If you don’t know the NMFC or freight class, feel free to ask. It’s better to have the correct information initially, than get a re-bill from the carrier weeks after the freight has been delivered.
Last month I wrote about helping to eliminate damage to your freight. This month I’ll cover insuring your cargo.
Insuring Your Freight
Should you insure your freight? That’s obviously a question only you can answer, but I can give you some guidance.
When you’re booking your freight and you are on the rate page, on the right side of the screen is a column that shows what the maximum Carrier Liability is for your shipment. You’ll note it shows amounts for both New and Used goods. As an example, UPS Freight typically offers up to $25.00per pound on NEW goods, and only $.10 – .50 per pound on USED goods. Other carriers offer similarly low coverage on used items, but not all of them are as generous when shipping new items.
If the coverage shown on the screen is not enough for your shipment, there is optional coverage you can get. On the upper right hand side of the screen is an ‘Add Insurance’ button. When you click on that, it opens up another window that allows you to add coverage up to $50,000 for either new or used goods. When selecting this coverage, it is NOT above what the carrier offers, but for the value of the entire shipment. This additional coverage runs about $.65/$100 of coverage, but there is a $35.00 minimum policy fee set by the underwriter.
Whether you go with what the carrier offers, or select the optional coverage, be aware that you are subject to the Terms and Conditions set forth by either the carrier or the cargo underwriter. They have minimum standards for packaging, limitations on what is and isn’t covered, as well as the country of destination on international shipments. When in doubt, check with the carrier, the underwriter or ask me. Don’t assume that just because you’ve packed that $35,000 computer server so well you could drop it off the roof without damage, that it’s necessarily covered!