How Long Does Shipping from China Take

China is a hub for manufacturing industries. If you plan on stepping into the Chinese manufacturing industry or just want to order some goods from Chinese companies, your main concern would be how long shipping from China takes. If that’s the case, we have got you covered in this comprehensive guide.

In it, we have explained the shipping time from China to the US, USA, and much more. So, without any further delays, let’s dive in to get started!

How long does shipping from China take cover

Table of Content

Part 1. Factors Affecting Shipping Duration from China

Before getting straight into the shipping from China to the USA time, let’s first develop an understanding of the key factors that affect the shipping duration. Though there can be countless of these, we have shortlisted a few of the most effective reasons; let’s give them a quick read!

Distance and Destination Countries

As a rule of thumb, distance from the shipping destination, be it a neighboring city or country or a plunged one, determines the shipping time. For instance, shipping to Pakistan will take just 3 to 5 business days on air freight, whereas shipping to Finland will take 4 to 7 business days.

Shipping Methods

Another determining factor is the shipping method you choose. Generally, we have four main choices, including sea freight, air freight, rail freight, and courier service. Here are a few details of these:

Sea Freight – It’s the cheapest shipping way for those who want to ship large volumes of goods. However, sea freight shipping is the slowest all, too. It will deliver your goods to the destination port in several weeks. 

Rail Freight – If you want to keep the shipping cost lower yet faster than the sea freight, this one must be your go-to choice. However, it can only ship to locations that are connected to China with rail networks.

Air Freight – It’s the fastest shipping method when sending from China. You can rely on it in case you have to urgently ship to your destination, or your shipment is of high value. As it’s the most expensive method of all, it won’t work for large-volume shipments. 

Courier Service – If you want to ship a few orders of small volume or some sort of document, you should select courier service. They deliver orders to your customer’s doorstep and ensure minimal delays; otherwise, they will refund the shipping cost. Again, it is not suitable for large volume goods.
Tip: If you want to save shipping costs, you can rely on 3PL services like NextSmartShip.
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Customs Clearance and Regulations

Shipping regulations vary greatly from destination to destination. Some might take more time to clear than others, especially the busy ports. To avoid delays, you must ensure you prepare and submit all the required documents.

Seasonal Factors and Peak Shipping Times

Seasonal factors like heavy fog in winter and thunderstorms in summer can also delay your shipment. So, keep in mind the expected delays when mentioning shipping time with your goods.

Moreover, peak shipping times also vary from that of normal days. It’s because during the peak seasons, freights are stuffed with shipments, and it gets quite hard to find a shipping partner if you haven’t finalized things beforehand.

Part 2. How Long Is Shipping from China to the US?

The US market is one of the most important ones for Chinese manufacturers, as they earn a fair share of their revenue from this market. All of the four shipping methods are accessible when trying to ship from China to the US. You can choose the one that best suits your delivery time and goods requirements.

Let’s have a look at the detailed comparison of different shipping methods and their shipping time to find out how long it is shipping from China to the US! Note that it’s average shipping time to the US; specific time may vary depending on the exact shipping destination and maybe the shipping service you rely on.

Channel Type Types of Shipping Weight Range On-time Delivery of 95%
Economic Air Freight 0 to 30 kg 11 working days
Express Air Freight 0 to 30 kg 8 working days
Economic Sea Freight 0 to 30 kg 30 to 40 working days
Economic Courier Service (e.g., DHL, FedEx) 0 to 30 kg 1 to 2 weeks
Express Courier Service (e.g., DHL, FedEx, UPS, FedEx) 0 to 30 kg 3 to 5 working days

Part 3. Average Shipping from China to USA Time

Wondering what the shipping from China to the USA time is? We have covered this in this comprehensive section!

Shipping Method Port to Port Door to Door
Sea Freight (FCL) 14 to 42 days 19 to 47 days
Sea Freight (LCL) 14 to 42 days 22 to 50 days
Air Freight 1 to 5 days 4 to 11 days
Express Freight 2 to 5 days

Note one thing: your transit time is closely impacted by the location, shipment size, and other factors, including the ones mentioned above. For instance, the potential variations based on specific destinations, say West Coast vs. East Coast, will be significantly impactful.

West Coast destinations like Los Angeles normally have shorter transit times than Ease Cost destinations like New York. You can obtain exact time details from your selected shipment service.

Part 4. Tips to Expedite Shipping from China

By now, you must have developed enough understanding of the shipping time from China to the US and USA; let’s now have a look at some tips to expedite shipping.

Working with Reliable Freight Forwarders

Partner with reliable freight forwarders to avoid delays due to man errors. Among the emerging names, NextSmartShip (NSS) is a must to consider 3PL service provider. Its years of experience and the innovative strategies implemented to streamline the shipping process will help you expedite your shipping service.
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Besides shipping, NSS also offers packaging and inventory management services. Some other exceptional perks of hiring them include real-time order tracking, no more MOQ restrictions, and dedicated support to small businesses. So, if you are looking for an all-rounder service provider, go get in touch with them now to get a quote!

Proper Documentation to Avoid Customs Delays

Custom delays are one of the most common issues one faces when shipping from China to the US, USA, or any other destination. Custom delays refer to the shipment being stopped at the port due to the unavailability of specific documents required for shipping or wrong documentation.

However, ensure your shipping partner takes along the right invoices, necessary certifications, and licenses, along with any other required documents for smooth customs clearance. Also, note that all destination ports have their personalized custom rules and regulations, so ensure to explore the entire process in-depth. Otherwise, your shipment will end up in the destination port for weeks and even months, waiting for clearance.

Off-peak Shipping to Avoid Congestion

Shipping in the off-peak season will surely help avoid congestion and ensure quick transit and shipping times. It’s because peak season shipping comes with a lot of hassle and consideration of a handful of more things. You have to meet inflated costs of shipments, and congestion is another factor risking delays and, ultimately, customer satisfaction.

As per the experts’ suggestion, you must always ship in the off-peak season. It doesn’t mean to wind up your business in the leak season; rather, stick to a better approach. Ideally, ship your peak season stocks to the desired destinations beforehand, owing to the statistical data obtained from the previous years’ stock requirements and usage. Believe, you can save hundreds of bucks by sticking to this tip.

Wrapping It Up!

Shipping from China to other destinations is so far considered the most common shipment route, as China is the main manufacturer of a significant percentage of products selling all around the world. Certain factors, like your chosen shipping method, customs delays, etc impact the shipping time.

However, we have mentioned the normal shipping time in the article above for your guidance. Hope by now you have obtained answers to all of your curiosity-filled queries, like “How long does shipping from China take?” and “How long is shipping from China to the US?” Stay tuned for more of such interesting shipping guides!