Importing goods to Europe or exporting may not be your daily business. Much information about how an import or export process works can be found on the website of The Freight Hero. It is of course conceivable that you then have further questions or that you want to be addressed personally. You can therefore always call our helpdesk at telephone number +31 (0)20 - 214 93 58 (The Netherlands) or +49 (0)221 370 500 25 (Germany); You can also reach us directly via the live chat in English, German and Dutch.
Below you will find frequently asked questions.
Is the transport for seafreight paid by volume or weight?
The goods you import are calculated by volume. The volume measure is the cubic meter. The cubic meter (symbol m³, or CBM of the English Cubic Meter) is a capacity measure and corresponds to the contents of a cube 1 meter long, 1 meter wide and 1 meter high. 1 CBM corresponds to 1000 dm³ or 1000 litres. The condition for the calculation by volume is that per 1 CBM the number of kilograms must not exceed 1000 kg. If you have a shipment that is heavier than 1000 KG per CBM, you can send an email to: email@example.com.
Do import duties have to be paid?
In addition to ocean freight, handling, possible customs inspection and delivery costs, you may be faced with import duties that need to be paid. Import duties can be seen as a form of protectionism: protecting your own market from competing imports from other countries. Export duties often have a political character or importance.
How are import duties calculated?
The level of import duties varies from product to product and can be influenced by the country of origin of the goods. They are generally percentages (ad valorem duties) and are levied on the customs value of the goods:
- the transaction value (the price paid for the product to the supplier)
- the freight costs
- the insurance costs In order to determine the correct level of customs duties, the customs authorities will classify the product under a decimal code. This code is called the TARIC code and the first four to six digits are the same all over the world. Customs duties are levied only at the external borders of the EU. No import duties are levied between the different EU Member States and there is free movement of goods. For this reason, customs controls at the EU's internal borders have also been abolished.
Who collects the import duties?
The collection of import duties is reserved for customs. Private individuals who import products must also do a declaration and pay any customs duties immediately. Customs does not distinguish between private individuals and companies, the import duties are the same for both groups. The customs will charge the import duties to the person who takes care of the customs clearance. The most advantageous way for you is to let The Freight Hero take care of your customs clearance.
What are CAF costs?
CAF stands for Currency Adjustment Factor. This surcharge applies from a number of loading ports and is intended to cover currency fluctuations against the dollar.