Cover yourself while quoting

"Please send me your quote for………….." is a popular message that most of us in the shipping have received at one time or another.. Outside of the industry, if someone asks us the price for an item say – a clock – we would say Zar.100/-.. While it should be as easy as that when quoting prices for shipping, its not the case.. Its a bit more complicated than that..

Shipping/Freight is a very variable industry in terms of pricing and one should always cover oneself for any exigencies while quoting..

From a shipping line’s perspective a freight quotation would normally cover

  • Freight
  • BAF (for the meaning of the abbreviations refer to ———–)
  • ISPS
  • Oncarriage
  • Local charges at both ends

While many in the industry know that the charges like BAF, Oncarriage, Customs Duty etc, is a constantly changing item due to the fluctuation in oil prices, and other factors, rather than assume that the client knows, it’s always better and pragmatic to cover yourself while quoting by using certain terms and conditions..

That way, the recipient of the quote has all the information upfront and can use that to adjust his costs or pricing to his client or end user..

These terms and conditions can and will vary based on your company setup, your requirements, standards etc.. If you do not want to show terms and conditions in every quote that you sent, there should at least be a sentence saying

“All quotations are covered under our standard trading terms and conditions, a copy of which is available on request or can be downloaded here (you can have a link to your standard trading terms and conditions page on your website)”


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