Monday, January 21, 2013

Measure Correctly, Mistakes are Costly

For many years, there have been rules associated with shipping that vary according to the mode,
or how you decide to ship your items.

For example, it used to be the case that for most domestic ground packages, your charges would be
simply based upon the actual weight of your shipping container, but today, there are rules about the
how big your package can be, or maximum limits on weight, or even limitations on how long an item can
be for shipping.

For as long as we have been in the shipping business, we have seen it all.   UPS used to have a rule for many
years that nothing could be shipped if the length, width and girth (yes, girth) did not exceed 140 inches, and
they used to give out chains to their customers to use to see if the package in question did not exceed the length
of the chain…….

Today, almost every package that goes into a system (ground shipping, air shipping and international shipping)
has rules associated with how big or how heavy a given package can be.   For the international arena, the rules
get more complex as several nations have their own set of rules about size, etc.   For those of you who have also
had to take a box or a package on a plane trip or use an airline’s cargo division, to ship a pet or something else,
the rules can be not only daunting, but I tell anyone and everyone who asks, to check no less than twice when
getting the permissible sizes.

I had been visiting one of our locations in Nevada and I happen to meet one of our customers, actually a young
married couple with a story that illustrates how these rules for shipping can be complex, easily misunderstood and
often they can end up with some harsh results…..

This couple has two Saint Bernards, and you can tell, to this couple, they are as close to being their children as any
pets can be.   They needed to travel by plane and in their research, the airlines told them they had rules for shipping
pets, that they needed pet carriers, and gave them the maximum size permissible for flying animals on a commercial

Long story short, the couple arranged for us to make them crates for their animals, as there were no pre made pet
carriers for dog breeds as large as Saint Bernards (how they can even get a Great Dane, Newfoundland,  or a Mastiffs….
into one of those smaller dog crates is beyond me…..our crates are custom, so we made them to the maximum size,
and we had air grates on both sides so the air would flow, we made wood receptacle frames for food and water
containers, easy access doors, to ensure that there would be no issues.

Our customers loved them, as they were genuinely concerned that these containers were safe, complied with the rules
of the airline, and would house their “loved ones”  for the trip to visit their grandparents.   Only problem is that our customer
was misinformed by the airline, and this resulted in them having to have two more crates made to conform to the airline’s rules.

I know there is more to this story, for sure, but the point is that we were directed to make a set of custom crates for a specific
purpose and this was not a happy ending for them since they had to have the crates remade, through no fault of their own.
So, always be careful when you need to comply with shipping rules, as they are easily misunderstood, complex and largely
inflexible in many cases.   Or if you need to, it never costs more to ask us to confirm measurements and maximum sizes for
different modes of shipment—at Box Brothers and this is the best advice when you need to ship something to a faraway place.

I am very proud of the way we worked with our customers as they told us that almost all other crating firms they contacted were
not interested in helping make a crate with the features that we added for the safe transport of their large family (dogs) members.
For Box Brothers, the customer and their needs are what we come to work for each and every day.   Ask any of our customers,
they know who we work for, even if they are Saint Bernards.  Kudo’s to our staff in Las Vegas, for doing such a great job helping
our customers.

Mark S. Frydman
Box Brothers Corp.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for everything you have written in this post! I have needed to find information on moving companies and you have really helped me! Do you know anything about long distance movers in Newfoundland? Thanks so much!