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Dear Shipper, when working with a Freight Forwarder you need to be familiar with different container service options so that you get the service you expect. It is important to understand the term CY which means Container Yard and CFS which means Container Freight Station. When you enquire a quote from the Freight Forwarders, they will need to know whether you want “door to door” services or goods to arrive at destination port only whereas a shipper would be responsible to transport the goods from the port to the final location.


CY/CFS (CY to CFS) Container Service

This is considered “door to port” service. Just like CY to CY, your container is packed at the shipper’s location and sometimes at the actual freight forwarders’ location, depending on your agreement. However, at the destination side, your container is stripped at the carrier’s container freight station. It is your responsibility as the consignee to take this loose cargo and move it from the destination port to your final location, be it a warehouse, distribution center, retail shop, factory or even your home.


CFS/CY (CFS to CY) Container Service

This is considered “port to door” service. You would use this service if your factory will deliver loose cargo, or cargo in a container that is not the final shipping container to the port. Your freight forwarder will then pack the goods into the shipping container. At the destination side, your cargo will be delivered in that container to your final location (warehouse, distribution center, retail shop, factory or even your home).


CFS/CFS (CFS to CFS) Container Service

This is considered “port to port” service. In this case, cargo will be delivered loose to the shipping port, packed into the container by the freight forwarder, and stripped at the destination port. A consignee is responsible for arranging pickup of the cargo at the destination port and moving it to your final location say warehouse, distribution center, retail shop or at home.


Understanding CY/CFS or CFS/CFS or CFS/CY is paramount to ensuring you receive the service you are expecting. Many companies which are new to importing do not always understand their responsibilities at the destination port. In particular, if you’re using a CY/CFS or CFS/CFS container service, you need to understand how long you have at the destination port to pick up your cargo before fees begin to accumulate. You also need to make sure you know what it will take to physically take ownership of your cargo to make sure you have the right equipment prepared.