Choosing a Customs brokerage service: Things that matter!
If you are involved in international trade, or importing for commercial gains, you must consider getting help from a Customs broker at some point. Let’s start by adding that imports are subject to regulatory norms and compliance requirements. Things like free trade agreements, nature and origin of imports, the intended use of shipments do matter in evaluation of duties and taxes. Regulatory compliance in case of imports is not a choice, and mistakes can be expensive, beyond the obvious fines and penalties. In this quick post, we are decoding what it takes to select a Customs brokerage service.
Start with the basics
First things first, all Customs brokers must procure a license for operation from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The term “Customs broker” may refer to a company, association, partnership or person, but essentially, they do the same job, or provide a similar set of services. Next, you need to check what a company actually offers for importers. For example, Amazon FBA freight forwarder ClearitUSA also deals in Customs consulting. You need to check if they are experienced enough and have been in the industry for a considerable period of time.
Discuss what you need
Everything about your importing business in unique, and every time you take a step towards expansion or working with new offshore vendors from different locations, you must consider consulting with your Customs broker. Check if the company or broker is a part of industry associations and if they have worked with companies and importers with a similar profile as yours. If you have a few immediate concerns, don’t shy away from discussing those, because eventually, it is necessary to understand how and to what extent they can offer help for your risks and factors that may influence your mode of business.
Find more on how they work
Gone are times when you would have to visit the office of Customs broker to get insight and assistance on Customs clearance and related aspects. To be more precise, the location of a broker is not much of a concern, as long as they operate pan country. Today, most of the advanced services have their own websites, and you can expect to get complete assistance on related matters online from their real-time agents. Secondly, you need to check how they work and if they are experienced in integrated services, such as –
- Freight forwarding
- Local delivery
- Supply chain management
Check online now and shortlist the best-rated and reputed Customs brokers in business.