How Long Does LCL Shipping Take?

How Long Does LCL Shipping Take?
How Long Does LCL Shipping Take?

Less than Container Load (LCL) shipping is a cost-effective option for organizations transporting goods or services with limited inventory. This method of transportation takes longer than other options but can still be reliable and efficient. Generally, LCL shipping can take anywhere from seven to twenty-one days, depending on the mode of transport used and the distance of the shipment. The further the shipment travels, the more time it will take and the more expensive it will be. LCL shipping is an excellent option for businesses that need to ship items in smaller quantities and on a budget.

What is the process of LCL shipping?

LCL shipping involves a few key steps to ensure goods or services are safely and efficiently delivered to their destination. LCL shipping requires careful planning and coordination with the shipper, resource providers, and transit companies. Shippers should know these steps to ensure LCL shipments are appropriately organized and arrive on time.

Logistics planning

The first step in LCL shipping is logistics planning; it involves understanding the goods that need to be shipped, determining how they will be transported, and scheduling a date for shipment. Shippers must also consider the type of LCL containers they plan to use, and any customs paperwork or export/import regulations associated with the shipment. Once this is ironed out, the LCL shipment can be booked.

LCL containerization

Containerization involves packing the goods into LCL containers so that they are securely and safely stored for transport. LCL shipping allows shippers to use a variety of LCL containers for their shipments, including pallets, crates, or barrels. LCL containers must be carefully organized and loaded onto the LCL vessel for transportation. Moreover, LCL containers often have size restrictions, so shippers must be aware of the LCL container’s capacity before loading them.


LCL shipping utilizes different modes of transport to get goods from the point of origin to their destination. LCL shippers can use air, sea, or rail transport depending on what is the most cost-effective and efficient for their shipment. LCL shipments can also be combined with containers in a container vessel for added convenience and cost savings. Furthermore, shippers must coordinate their shipments with LCL carriers to ensure the shipment arrives without any incident.

Customs process

LCL shipments must pass through customs and border control before entering or leaving a country or destination. LCL shippers must know all relevant international regulations and laws governing LCL trade to ensure their shipment is cleared correctly. Shippers should also obtain any necessary permits, certificates, or declarations for their cargo before it enters a country.

Final delivery

LCL shippers should coordinate with LCL carriers to ensure LCL shipments arrive promptly and without incident. Furthermore, shippers should know LCL receiving procedures at the final destination to ensure their shipments are correctly delivered. Shippers must also be prepared to pay any additional charges, including storage or handling fees, that may apply upon receipt of the LCL shipment.

Risks of LCL shipping

Although LCL shipping is an efficient and cost-effective way to move goods, there are some risks associated with LCL shipments. LCL shippers should be aware of these risks to ensure LCL shipments are delivered safely and without incident. LCL shipping companies can help manage LCL shipments and minimize the risk of cargo loss or damage.

Cargo loss or damage

LCL shipments can be susceptible to cargo loss or damage due to mishandling, poor packaging, or external weather conditions. Shippers should take extra precautions to properly package LCL shipments and use appropriate LCL containers for safe and secure delivery. Furthermore, LCL shipping companies should provide regular shipment tracking to LCL shippers.

Delays in LCL shipments

LCL shipments can be delayed for various reasons, such as customs clearance issues, port congestion, and machinery breakdowns. LCL shipping companies should reduce the risk of shipping delays and provide LCL shippers with updates on the LCL shipment’s progress.

Incorrect LCL documentation or paperwork

LCL shippers must ensure LCL shipments have all necessary documents, permits, and certificates to be cleared by customs. LCL shipping companies should also check that LCL paperwork is correct before shipments are loaded on LCL vessels.

LCL theft

LCL shipments are vulnerable to theft, especially when shipping routes cross international borders. LCL shippers should use the appropriate LCL containers and security measures to reduce the risk of theft.