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You are here: Lesson 16: Handling the export logistics  
Step 16: Export logistics and transportation types

The word 'logistics' can be defined as "The management of both inbound and outbound materials, parts, supplies, and finished goods. (Source: Crowley ). Although logistics is much more than just transporting goods from one point to another, the transportation component is an important part of the logistics process. In this section we examine some of the transportation alternatives at your disposal.

In the world of international trade, there are various forms of transportation that you can turn to get your products from South Africa to wherever the product needs to go. These transportation types are the following:

  • Sea freight
  • Air freight
  • Rail freight
  • Road freight
  • River freight

Sea freight and air freight are perhaps the two most common forms of transportation for getting products from South Africa to distant markets in North America, Europe, Asia and elsewhere. Road haulage and rail freight are more common within the local market in order to get products from inland cities such as Johannesburg, Pretoria and Bloemfontein to the coast. Of course, road haulage and rail links are important transportation alternatives for exports into Africa. Similarly, road and rail are also likely to be important forms of transportation within the target market (say Australia) in order to get the goods from the incoming port to the final destination (be it a warehouse or factory).

In some countries in Europe, Africa, Asia, as well as in the US, river transportation fulfills a similar role to road and rail transportation in getting the product to the final customer.

To learn more about these different forms of transportation, please follow the links below. You may also want to read up more about containerisation - click here.

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Step 16: more information

      Sea Freight
      Air Freight
      Rail Freight
      Road Freight
      River Freight

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More information on Lesson 16
Learning to export... The export process in 21 easy steps
Step 1: Considering exporting
Step 2:Current business viability
Step 3:Export readiness
Step 4:Broad mission statement and initial budget
Step 5:Confirming management's commitment to exports
Step 6: Undertaking an initial SWOT analysis of the firm
Step 7:Selecting and researching potential countries abroad
Step 8: Preparing and implementing your export plan
Step 9: Obtaining financing for your exports
Step 10: Managing your export risk
Step 11: Promoting the firm and its products abroad
Step 12: Negotiating and quoting in exports
Step 13: Revising your export costings and price
Step 14: Obtaining the export order
Step 15: Producing the goods
Step 16: Handling the export logistics
Step 17: Export documentation
Step 18: Providing follow-up support
Step 19: Getting paid
Step 20: Reviewing and improving the export process
Step 21: Export Management
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