The new Known Shipper System that TSA has implemented for all US freight forwarders can cause delays for air exporters that are not prepared. You must make sure your suppliers, as well your own warehouses and offices, are known shippers (to your forwarder) if you need to ship air freight on a passenger aircraft flight. This applies to domestic and international shipments that originate in the United States. Gateway Logistics Group offers a word to the wise. Work closely with you forwarder to make sure you are prepared before the urgent shipment comes up.
The good news is that the TSA has made it much easier for Logistics Firms and International Freight Forwarders like Gateway Logistics Group, Inc. based in Houston Texas, to make sure that a Known Shipper Status is verified for each air shipment that goes on a passenger aircraft flight.
As a purchasing agent, or international project or shipping manager, you must try to balance finding a freight forwarder that is both competitive in price for urgent air shipments as well as one that is productive in making sure your shipments move as booked. The last thing you need is to select a vendor to move a urgent air shipment halfway across the globe and then find out that the shipment did not move because your supplier did not pass its Known Shipper status check for the forwarder you chose.
The TSA has mandated that any supplier or facility that tenders cargo to a freight forwarder must be verified as a Known Shipper for that specific forwarder. It does not matter that a given supplier, ABC Company, is a known shipper to XYZ Forwarding Firm in Houston. If you select Gateway International Transport to handle your shipment, then the ABC Company must be a known shipper to Gateway as well. This is the requirement independent of who shows as the ultimate shipper on the airway bill that moves the cargo.
Now you may think through the following: I have been a known shipper to the ABC Company for years so all my suppliers are also known shippers for the same reason. This is still "technically true" because the TSA has not completely phased out the old known shipper system that was in effect prior to November 2007. However, under the new KSMS known shipper system that will ultimately replace the old system, each supplier or warehouse facility must be a known shipper for a forwarder regardless of the AWB shipper known shipper status. In other words, if your forwarder collects cargo on your behalf from 10 different vendors for an air shipment that is going as cargo on a passenger aircraft flight, then all 10 vendors must be known shippers for that shipment.
There is no final date when the transitional period between old and new known shipper procedures will take effect but don't let this inevitable date cause you to have a shipment delayed in the future. Gateway Logistics Group, a freight forwarder with headquarters in Houston, can assist you in making sure all your warehouse facilities and vendors have known shippers before your next urgent air freight shipment occurs.
The new procedure for verifying Known Shipper Status can be a quick and easy process if you have the right assistance in advance. Gateway Logistics Group has over 20 years of experience in making sure shippers meet all export air regulations and procedures including known shipper status. Gateway is also a certified C-TPAT member so you can be certain that we have a strong commitment to keeping the United States' air and ocean traffic lanes open and free of the threats of terrorism.
You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to assist you with preparing the correct information or contact David Collins directly in the IT department for more information on how this process works as well.