Shipping your products through air freight can present a lot of advantages for companies. These packages often receive less handling during the transportation process, which reduces the possibility of damage to the goods. Additionally air freight can also speed up the timeline of your product getting to the hands of the consumer by a fair margin.
With that being said, air freight transportation also has many guidelines and requirements for companies who decide to ship their products using this method. Getting a better understanding of these rules can help you better prepare and avoid any unnecessary delays and reduce product damage.
Here we take a look at a few things to consider when using air freight.
One of the most important aspects of packaging is to label your package clearly and correctly. This is extremely important during air freight as a mislabeled package can cause delays or can even be rejected by carriers.
If you are packaging and shipping any items in the nine classes of dangerous goods, they must be labeled accordingly with a HAZMAT label. The nine classes of dangerous goods include:
- Flammable Gases
- Flammable Liquids
- Flammable Solids
- Toxic & Infectious
Additionally, do not forget to label your package on both sides for handling symbols such as:
“handle with care,” “keep dry,, “do not stack,” “fragile,” etc.
While air freight packaging is minimally handled, it is still best to package the products accordingly in order to avoid as much damage as possible during transportation.
Corrugated fiberboard boxes (CFB) are usually the preferred method for packaging, but should be considered as single use boxes. CFB’s can lose their strength by up to 50% within six months, therefore reusing them can increase the risk of damage to the contents inside.
Another way to make sure your packaging is compliant with air freight regulations is to make sure your packaging is tamper proof. This means no holes, tears, breaks or openings of any kind in the packaging. This is especially important when shipping internationally as airline security makes sure no foreign objects can be smuggled into any of the packages. If packages are not properly sealed they can be rejected.
Due to air freight stress, it is important to create enough padding inside the packages to reduce impact or vibration damage. This padding will keep items from becoming loose and presents an extra level of protection during transportation.
Materials companies can use materials such as polystyrene chips or bubble wrap to prevent further damage. While there are other plastic alternatives brands can use to protect their packaging, keep in mind to not be excessive and over-pack. This can present a problem in not only weight but also in the unpackaging experience.
Finally, if the packaging requires temperature control, make sure you provide packaging that is well insulated and keeps contents at the desired temperature. Sustainable coolers provide a great option for contents that need to be kept cool. Label these packages accordingly and plan for the whole transition process including layovers to prevent temperature fluctuation.
Keep Size in Mind
While air freight allows for much larger packaging to be transported, there are still some things to keep in mind when transporting large packages. Different airlines have varying guidelines depending on the size of the aircraft, so always keep in mind the dimensions of the package. Each package must be placed in loading and unloading devices and not exceed limits.
Items that are particularly heavy are tied down to the floor of the aircraft. Make sure to provide hooks or hoops in order to keep the package in place and not move around.
Packaging With Pioneer Packaging
With over 35 years of experience, Pioneer Packaging has provided exceptional packaging solutions in a number of industries. Contact us today to learn how we can optimize your packaging and enhance your brand and unpackaging experience!