Direct rail services have been operating between China and Europe since 2008, completing the journey in just 18 days, half the transit time of many sea freight services.
While the earliest services focused on entire trains dedicated to automotive and hi-tech cargo flows, since critical mass was achieved in 2014 operators have been accepting full container load (FCL) bookings from selected forwarding partners, opening up Asia-Europe rail services to a whole new range of shippers.
Twice as fast as sea, the rail service is also a compelling alternative to sea-air services via Dubai, because the 18-day transit time means importers can react to demand in the same way they do when shipping goods by sea from China to Dubai and then air freighting into Europe.
Rail service customers can achieve cost savings of up to 65% on air freight and 40% on Sea Air.
Lower cost than air and sea-air and faster than ocean freight, rail is an environmentally friendly alternative, that connects seaports, hinterlands and economic zones over vast distances.
Fixed time schedules are available for both part load and full load door-to-door movements from China to all of Europe.