International shipping is critical to the United States economy for several reasons. It allows businesses of all sizes to:
- Gain access to a greater range of products as well as suppliers. US companies do not produce 100% of the goods and merchandise that U.S. citizens use. By importing goods from other countries we can expand the global marketplace and give consumers a greater variety.
- Reduce costs by importing from other countries. Bringing in goods from foreign countries is often less expensive than manufacturing or producing them here in the US. This is mainly due to lower labor costs and other expenses in the countries we import from.
- Reach new markets through exporting domestic goods. Although the US imports a lot of products from foreign countries we also export many products as well. For example, some of the top exports from the US are integrated circuits, crude petroleum, passenger vehicles, and refined oil among others.
- Stay competitive: Today’s global economy requires that you engage in international trade to stay competitive. This is because your competitors who are importing will be able to charge lower prices or offer a greater variety, edging you out of the market.
Overall, international shipping is an integral part of American society not just the economy. It also serves to maintain our relationship with foreign countries as importing helps improve lives around the world.
However, one of the most challenging parts of international shipping is getting goods in and out of the ports stateside. Many regulations must be adhered to, there’s port congestion to navigate, and you’ve got logistical challenges as well.
This is why you need a solid partner in global logistics to ensure your shipments run smoothly. The Port Of Houston is the ideal channel for this to all come together.
What You Need To Know About The Port Of Houston
The port of Houston is a critical player in the supply chain of international trade and commerce. Its location in Houston Texas, gives that the optimal location to distribute goods throughout the United States once they arrive.
It is consistently one of the busiest ports in the country handling over two million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) of cargo in containers. It also happens to be a major channel for exporting domestic crude oil.
The Port of Houston is comprised of two main channels for shipping: the Galveston Channel and the Bolivar Roads Channel. The Bolivar Roads Channel is situated on the North End of Galveston Bay. It is the main entrance to the port for large cargo vessels. The Galveston Channel is situated on the South end and serves smaller vessels.
Aside from its two shipping channels the Port of Houston also has several terminals used for various types of cargo. These terminals include breakbulk terminals, roll-on/roll-off, break terminals, and container terminals.
The Advantages Is Holds Over Other Ports
The Port may not be as publicized as more famous ports on the West Coast such as Long Beach, yet it remains one of the busiest. There’s a reason for that—it offers importers and exporters many great advantages including:
Large Volume Shipment Handling:
The Port of Houston can easily serve ships bringing in upwards of 14,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) making it ideal for large volume shipments.
Deep Water Channel:
The channel has a depth of 45 feet easily allowing it to serve larger vessels.
Being equipped with modern infrastructure and facility design ensures efficiency in all shipping operations.
Very Competitive Rates:
To remain competitive with eastern and western seaboard ports The Port of Houston offers aggressively competitive rates for shipping services. This translates to lower costs for shippers, which is always a great benefit.
All four of these features contribute to boosting efficiency and keeping your costs to a minimum. Making it an excellent choice for international shipments but there are even more reasons to choose The Port Of Houston.
Less Congestion Means No More Delay In Your Supply Chain
Let’s face it, yes The Port Of Los Angeles does handle far more cargo than the Port of Houston. The Port Of Long Beach is right behind in terms of TEUs.
However, Being the busiest port in the US doesn’t make it the most efficient. In recent news, we’re sure you’ve seen the stories about ridiculous delays at both of these ports. Both Los Angeles and Long Beach have struggled greatly to mitigate the congestion.
East Coast ports aren’t much better. The Port of New York and the Port of New Jersey also Have suffered from major issues with congestion.
Do you know why you don’t see the Port of Houston in those news reports? Because we simply don’t have that issue. Not because of lack of activity, but rather because of our location, facilities, and efficient freight forwarders right here near the port.
What Makes the Port of Houston a Prime Location?
The port is directly located on the Houston Ship Channel giving it direct access to the Gulf of Mexico. Additionally, the port is located in a triangulation of major highways and rail lines, making it perfect for businesses that need to get goods to and from the port fast.
The Port of Houston also claims over 150 terminal operators, as well as other logistics businesses such as Hawthorne Global on-site or a stone’s throw away. These businesses provide crucial support for clients including transloading services, warehousing, ground transportation, and more.
The Port of Houston is never content with the status quo and is constantly expanding and improving the infrastructure to accommodate the growing demand the port receives. In recent years, improvements have included adding new berths, increasing container capacity, and adding to its rail network.
These overhauls and additions have positioned the port of Houston to be a major player with efficient service, and capability to handle a larger volume of goods.
Partner With Us And Import/Export With Ease
If you’re looking for a partner that can help you navigate the complexities of the Port of Houston—and save you time and money in the process—Hawthorne Global is that partner. Contact us today!