School holidays and vacations are top of mind for many of us in July, but for those working in the supply chain (and particularly retail) this month marks the beginning of the manic time that is peak season.
Over the next five months, buyers will be ordering the bulk of their shipments as consumers prepare for the holidays and associated end-of-year purchases.
Consumers expect shelves to be stocked as early as October, and for the supply chain, this means planning begins now.
As demand rises and capacity becomes constrained, factoring in buffer time for disruptions or delays — even in the booking process — is essential.
After continued cargo growth through 2017, volumes and freight rates from China and Asia are expected to surge as the peak season starts to build ahead of China’s golden week which starts on October 2 and traditionally prompts a scramble by shippers to load cargo ahead of factory closures.
Far East/Westbound and Eastbound trades are set to grow by an estimated 6-7% in the first half of 2017 and more in the 2nd half as the traditional peak period in August combines with the spike of volumes prior to Golden Week.
Given these factors the shipping lines will want to see more ocean freight rate increases over the next three months for spot and long-term rates, particularly if their July and August general rate increases (GRI) stick.
“MIQ Logistics negotiate rate and space agreements across all the shipping alliances, which means we can maintain your service levels during the peak season and protect you from these impending freight increases by fixing your rates at today’s competitive prices.”