shipping to puerto rico

Shipping to Puerto Rico: Tips and Requirements

by Hannelore Book

Realities of Shipping to Puerto Rico

Shipping to Puerto Rico is an excellent way for companies to expand their reach. While some companies might shy away from delivering to the island due to higher expenses and more limited shipping options, around 3 million people live in Puerto Rico, making the potential customer base worth the additional costs! While shipping to Puerto Rico may initially seem daunting, the process should not be complicated. Many logistical hiccups can be avoided by simply supplying correct documentation. FreightCenter can assist you in preparing the proper documentation and meeting all requirements, including documentation for hazardous or licensed cargo.

Puerto Rico Benefits

Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory; therefore, shipping will not qualify as International. One of the benefits of shipping; to Puerto Rico from the U.S. is that customs are not required. Instead, you must declare your “shipment to destination” in Puerto Rico and pay an excise tax to Hacienda. Hacienda is the treasury department that collects excise taxes. Usually, this tax rate is about 11.5%, but it depends on the shipped commodities.

Puerto Rico Required Documentation:

  • – Shippers Export Declaration
  • – Commercial Invoice: Declares the valuation of cargo on a line-item format. This form will help determine your tax rate, although tax exemption can be claimed with a qualifying tax exemption number.
  • – Bill of Lading: Includes freight details/instructions. Your forwarder will use this to write the final bill of lading with your freight carrier.
  • – EEI: Depending on the value of your cargo, you may have to submit this document. EEI is the Electronic Export Information form. This form is required if the value exceeds $2,500.

Puerto Rico Hacienda Tips

  • – Create a SURI account: Ensure the receiver has a SURI account. Whether that be an entity or company, having them set up an account will streamline paying your excise taxes.
  • – Correct Documentation: Make sure that all commodities and valuations match up across your documentation.
  • – Double-check documentation: To be safe, check your documentation at least twice thoroughly. Doing so will allow the whole process to move as seamlessly as possible.
  • – Timely Hacienda Payments: Pay Hacienda as quickly as possible. Proper payments will ensure your cargo is kept from being held up.
  • – Consignee Information: Having the consignee’s name, address, and phone number is beneficial. This information will allow you to communicate with them effectively about the arrival of their goods and tax requirements to clear Hacienda.

Puerto Rico Freight Shipping Processes

Luckily when it comes to shipping freight to Puerto Rico, you will have various options. Express Shipping is done via air and can be completed within three days, while Ocean Freight shipping takes approximately eight days and is usually the preferred method for commercial shippers. There will likely be even more shipping options if you are shipping direct-to-consumers. We have partnered with various carriers to ensure your success in shipping to Puerto Rico! Below is a list of common carriers we use with their terminals in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico.

Terminals in Puerto Rico – San Juan, PR terminals are located in Guaynabo, PR

AAA Cooper Transportation
Centro Mercantile International Road 165 KM 2.4
Bldg 5 Lo 1
Guaynabo, PR 00970
Fax (855) 378-7715

ABF Freight
RD 165 KM 2.4 US Foreign Trade Zone
Guaynabo, PR 00965
(787) 788-4747
Fax: ( 787) 788-7049

Averitt Express
Centro Mercantile International Road 165 km 2.4
Bldg 5
Guaynabo, PR 00970

Universal Warehouse Amelia Industrial Park
Calla A Lot 2 Carr 24 KM 1.6
Guaynabo, PR 00968
787-782-1750 (Reps. Maria or Yashria)

UPS Freight
Fax: 787-782-5235

XPO Logistics
Rexco Industrial Park #15 Calle B
Guaynabo, PR 00968 US
Customer Service: 787-706-4100
Toll-free: 888-556-3765
Fax: 877- 248-0407

YRC Freight
BLDG 6, RD 165, KM 2.4
Guaynabo, PR 00965

Aside from air and ocean, FreightCenter also provides LTL and Full Truckload shipping options and has a variety of freight shipping options for Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico Shipping Overview

Shipping to Puerto Rico can be an excellent business opportunity, but it is crucial to prioritize logistical planning. Shipping and tax rates are more costly, making considering these factors in your budget, especially important. Another vital tip is supply chain forecasting if you have a distribution center with regular sales in Puerto Rico. With the potential for delays and longer-than-normal transit times, it is important to anticipate your needs accurately, ideally eight days ahead of schedule.

Since Puerto Rico is an island, it is also prone to hurricane season, which must be accounted for when planning your shipments. While shipping to Puerto Rico will require more planning and budgeting, streamlining the process with a FreightCenter will make the process worthwhile.

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