International Shipping Insurance

International Shipping Insurance

Welcome to our final chapter of The International Shipper’s Checklist! Now that you’ve got a leg up on the global shipping game, it’s time to learn how to protect your freight. Whether you’re an old hand or new to the game, you know that shipping is going to open you up to possible losses. It happens with domestically shipped freight; and the risk only grows when you decide to go international. Stay guarded against the headache of item loss with international shipping insurance.

International Shipping Insurance


Q: What should you expect from insurance?

A: You should expect the world! There is no price tag on peace of mind. The benefits of coverage far outweigh the risks involved in shipping. In the event of a mishap, the costs due to loss or damages are the least of the problem.

All Risk international shipper insurance

This is the best plan for those looking for the most coverage. “All Risk” will protect you against damages or loss caused by external forces, of which there are many. This can be anything from damage or loss caused by infestation, poor packaging, customs rejections, and more.

With All Risk shipping, find out what your coverage says. Keep an eye on the following sections of your insurance plan:

  • Coverage Aspects – The basics of your coverage.

  • Excluded Items – What does not qualify as being covered by your insurance?

  • Special Insuring Conditions – Are there certain items that can’t be covered by your insurance unless packaged a certain way?

  • Exclusions of Loss – What events/damages aren’t fully covered by your policy?

  • Claim Filing – Every policy is different. It’s important to learn as much as you can about yours.

You want to make sure the policy you purchase will cover all of your bases. Leave no stone unturned. Visit with any questions regarding your shipment. They will most likely suggest that you look into two different types of insurance coverages as you move forward with your shipment.

What Could Possibly Go Wrong?


When you’re shipping internationally, a host of things can and will go wrong. International shipping insurance covers, but is not limited to:

  • Limited carrier liability— Not a problem, per se, but a concern. Whether you are shipping packages nationally by truck or sending overseas by ship or plane, carrier liability is narrow. Global shipping laws favor the carrier and are rarely held responsible for losses that occur while freight is in transit. Whether it’s an Act of God (hurricane or storm) or a container over the edge of a boat. Even if the carrier is liable, shippers will receive little pay for their lost freight (cents on the dollar).

  • Catastrophic events— We can’t control what happens, especially when we ship cargo. For this reason, there are many things to consider. Storms, explosions, shipwrecks, and pirate attacks…yes, pirate attacks! Bulk and container ships faced a total of 61 attacks in 2017, resulting in costly damages and loss.

  • Rough waters— Shipping via freight vessels are most common. It is the more cost-effective way to ship globally, and the seas can be unpredictable. This means that losing cargo containers at sea is fairly common. An average of about 10,000 lost cargo containers fall off major containerships a year, costing nearly $370 million in losses. Most of these losses are due to weather events. Almost 1,100 each year.

  • Cargo damage— Cargo can face a lot more than being thrown off a ship mid-transport. Potential damages can appear in the form of rough transportation, poor handling, infestation, or improper storage. Most cargo damages occur in the stowing phase.

The Right Insurance for Shipping Internationally


Shopping around for the right insurance policy requires time and patience, as we’ve learned in prior posts. Time may be the most important part of the international shipping game.

Shop around and compare policies. You should seek out the one best suited for your freight. When you book shipments through a third-party logistics company, many will provide optional and additional insurance within the booking process.

We’ve Docked—See You At Our Next Series!


Now that you’ve learned more about the world of international shipping, it’s time for you to expand your shipping. Let FreightCenter help! We’re experts when it comes to shipping nationally and internationally. And our freight agents can ease you into the process to ensure it’s smooth sailing.

Shipping nationally within the U.S. or to/from Canada? Use FreightCenter’s free online quote tool to begin. For other locations, call our international shipping experts at 800-716-7608.

Check out the entire International Shipper’s Checklist series below:

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