Fashion Logistics: 4 Essentials of International Luxury Shipping

Shipping fashion items across the globe is a complex, delicate task. In this post, we look at the four most important components that shipping professionals must consider when transporting premium cargo across borders. 

When it comes to luxury shipping, customers want to know that their consignments are secure throughout transport. Luxury garments, footwear and other items are expensive and often critical to the success of a major fashion event. These items need to arrive on-time and unharmed for everything to go off without a hitch.

Accordingly, the operations and logistics professionals tasked with ensuring these items get to where they’re going need to understand the nuances of international shipping to do their jobs. This includes all facets of the shipping lifecycle, from packaging, to transport, to delivery.

And when it comes to fashion, there are many nuances.

With that in mind, let’s discuss what matters most when it comes to international luxury shipping.

#1 – Packaging   

Luxury items typically require specific packaging due to their value, size and nature of their material. They need to arrive in pristine condition. Luxury shipping companies make this happen thanks to their diverse and customizable packaging options.

For example, if haute couture dress is being shipped from the US to Italy, shippers must use a specialized trunk or standing wardrobe box to transport the garment. These packaging options ensure a secure transport journey, as the dress can hang securely within the packaging, and there are orientation arrows on the outside of the package to show airport handlers how to carry it properly.

#2 – Transportation Security  

In many cases, luxury fashion items require the highest level of security during transportation – and that’s when on-board courier (OBC) hand carry services come into play. An OBC will travel with an item throughout its journey to ensure security, proper handling and prompt arrival. This person escorts a luxury item to its destination so you don’t have to, providing surety and peace of mind.

Depending on its size, an OBC may bring the luxury item on board the plane in the passenger area, or work with airport personnel so the item is stored properly in the cargo area. For example, shoes and jewelry can typically go on the plane with the OBC, but large items like dresses and suits will probably be stored with baggage. OBCs will work with cargo handlers to ensure that the luxury item isn’t forgotten at the airport and that it remains safe and secure on the flight.

#3 – International Documentation

International shipping will always require supporting documentation, as items are shipped cross-border. Some documents are truly crucial to the overall shipping process and ensure your shipment goes smoothly, with no delay. Let’s go over three examples of supporting documentation for international luxury shipping:

Commercial Invoice

A commercial invoice is a detailed document used for international shipments to determine the true value of the exported goods. The information provided on the invoice – item description, country of origin and value of goods – determines how much duty and taxes Customs will charge the individual or company shipping the item. Inaccurate or poor quality invoices could have an adverse impact on the delivery schedule of a shipment, so it’s vital to include accurate information on these documents from the very beginning.

ATA Carnet

An ATA Carnet, or a “passport of goods” enables a duty and tax reduction for transporting of goods that return to their country of export within one year. ATA stands for Admission Temporaire/Temporary Admission and is the name for a treaty between more than 80+ countries allowing for its use. Using this document for applicable shipments can help customers save a significant amount of money.

Footwear Declaration Form

U.S. Customs and Border Protection and other U.S. agencies require all footwear to be accompanied by the Footwear Declaration form. This document includes the materials used to make the shoe, where the shoe was made, manufacturing information and various details about the type of shoe being shipped.

#4 – Final Mile Delivery 

The final delivery of a luxury item is the most important part of the shipping process, but can get complicated when it happens internationally. While you might have trusted connections in your local region, this may not be the case at your item’s destination, and it can be extremely difficult to find a trusted partner internationally. This is especially true when OBC hand carry isn’t used. Who will take the fashion item from the airport to the hotel? Who will deliver it within the specific time frame?

Premium and luxury logistics companies have a presence around the globe, so wherever your item needs to go, there is a trusted partner waiting for it upon arrival. This provides peace of mind around delivery knowing your shipment is in the hands of a dependable company that is in complete control of the final mile delivery.

Final Thoughts

Shipping luxury items internationally requires precision, diligence and extreme care. If your in-house teams are unfamiliar with the landscape of international shipping, consider working with a professional. An international luxury shipping specialist will be able to provide support and guidance to ensure your shipment arrives on time, leaving you to focus on other things, like the fashion event to which the items are being shipped.

Want to use a luxury shipping company to transport your fashion items across the globe? Contact Worldnet to get started.