The Chinese New Year in 2023 will arrive 10 days earlier than it did last year. The Chinese New Year is not only celebrated in China but in countries such as Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines and elsewhere. This time of the year is a very challenging time for shipping companies because of the production delays, blank sailings, and an imbalance in the supply chain equilibrium. The Lunar New Year celebrations that will continue for 2 weeks will start on the 22nd of January and continue till the 5th of February. As an independent freight forwarder, you need to plan ahead for the forthcoming delays if you want to deliver your goods on time by effectively coping with blank sailings, delays, flight cancellations, and lengthy transit times.
In this article, we will be discussing a few critical steps that will allow freight forwarding companies to eliminate all the unwanted hassles during the holiday season and continue uninterruptedly.
Things shipping companies should expect during Chinese New Year 2023
Shutdown of factories
To begin with, the manufacturing units in China will slow down their production during the first and second weeks of January. This is the time when the factory workers go home to spend time with their families. The shutdown of the manufacturing units also implies that the commodities will not be delivered to the ports for shipping. As a result, even though it will be possible to send goods to/from the ports in China, it will be nearly impossible to get your deliveries from suppliers during the festivities.
Shutdown of productions
Moreover, most factory workers will be on leave during the two weeks of the new year celebrations and return to the factories after 5th February. As a result, the production levels will remain low in the month of January and will return to normal after the third week of February. Therefore, logistics companies need to prepare in advance to overcome these obstacles.
Less availability of slots
Although the ports will function normally during the Lunar New Year holidays, you can expect lower capacity during this time of the year. Moreover, you can expect a shortage of containers and slots because of the shipping rush during the holiday season. As a result, it can be really difficult to secure space which will most likely continue throughout February and gradually ease in March.
Tips for independent freight forwarders to avert impending delays
Independent freight forwarders who regularly ship goods to/from China need to make a solid plan to avoid unwanted delays during the Lunar New Year holidays.
Make early plans
To start with, you need to mark your calendar and come up with a strategy for moving goods before and after the Lunar New Year holidays. Moreover, this time of the year can stop forwarders from accessing the manufactured items for up to one month so you need to keep extra stock before time. It is also suggested that you make a list of all the dates of the official New Year Holidays in Mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Singapore, Vietnam, Indonesia and Malaysia so that you can plan your orders and deadlines in advance.
Ensure ready availability of data
End-to-end visibility along with accurate forecasting can be of great help if you want to bypass the supply chain obstacles during the Chinese New Year. Easy access to data during every step of your supply chain is crucial for coming to informed decisions even after you have shipped your cargo.
Constantly communicate with the carriers
Communicate with your shipper ahead of time and inform them about priority shipment in case of limited availability of space. You can also consider providing a forecast of the expected shipment to your shipper. If you are considering the use of air freight then make sure to reserve space on the belly hold of passenger planes for time-sensitive cargoes. Although the rates are going to be high they will allow you to keep your supply chain functional.
Find the right logistics partner in China
As a member of one of the top logistics networks on the planet, you can count on the assistance of the best freight forwarders across several cities in China. To cope with the added pressure of the peak season, you can always reach out to your Globalia partners in the Chinese territories whose vast market experience would help you cope with the market situation and find the ideal solutions. As some of the best freight forwarders, Globalia agents will help you navigate the CNY and its pitfalls and ensure that your operations run smoothly. They are some of the most reliable and competent freight forwarding agents who will give you an exact idea of the scenario, provide you with an insider connection and find the most innovative way-outs.