Introduction to Shipping from China to Saudi Arabia


  • Modes of Shipping from China to Saudi Arabia
  • Shipping by Air
  • Shipping by Sea
  • How Can ProConnect Integrated Logistics Help?

Saudi imports from China rose 17.8 percent YoY in 2020 to USD 28.1 Billion, according to a report from Mubasher. Thanks to the strong ties between the two countries, importing or shipping from China to Saudi Arabia has become quite a thing.

Trading between China and Saudi Arabia has been quite steady overtime. As we know, China and Saudi Arabia have agreed to deepen their collaboration for cargo logistics, transportation and trade in view of the Vision 2030 of Saudi Arabia.

Modes of Shipping from China to Saudi Arabia

Shipping from China to Saudi Arabia

China is among the Top 3 trading partners of the kingdom. If your business requires importing from China, then you ought to know the available options of shipping between the two countries – which is essentially either sea freight or air freight.

Based on a few variables like type of cargo, its size, weight / volume, available transit time, space and of course budget – a choice between air or sea freight is made. Here are some details that will help you make a well-informed decision.

Shipping by Air – China to Saudi Arabia

If express or fast delivery is your priority, then air shipping would be the most apt for your shipments. Air freight usually takes anywhere between 3 days to 9 days which depend on the origin and destination ports, time required for consolidation and deconsolidation of goods and custom clearance and security check process.

While air freight can be costlier, there are several other factors that contribute to businesses opting for air shipping, like –

Speedy delivery – When you do not have much time in hand to deliver goods, or when some replacement parts are required on urgent basis, air freight is chosen.

Type of Cargo To Be Shipped – Air freight is chosen when shipments contain goods with low shelf life, perishable goods, delicate and fragile goods, or those that are the need of the hour, like high demand goods, urgent machine replacement parts, etc.

Cargo Handling Points and Security – When your shipment is better off with less handling points, like multiple loading and unloading, then air freight is chosen over sea freight. This also means there will be lower risk of loss / theft, thus better security. Air freight is better for luxury, delicate or fragile goods.

Shipping by Sea – China to Saudi Arabia

Compared to air freight, sea freight is far more cost effective, that when you have enough time at hand for your shipment to reach its destination in Saudi. The transit time for sea shipments depend on several factors like shipment size, type of cargo, seasonal demands, available space, etc. Typically, transit time for sea shipments from China to KSA can range from anywhere between 14 to 40 days – depending on the origin and destination ports, time required for loading and offloading, customs process, available delivery options, etc.

Sea Shipping from China to Saudi Arabia can be undertaken through LCL or FCL. shipping is chosen when your cargo shares container space with that of others. When your shipment does not fill an entire container load, FCL proves to be economical. LCL shipments take longer time due to the stops and time required for handling, loading and unloading of other cargo shipments along with yours. Get more information on LCL shipping here.

FCL shipping opted for when your shipment is large enough to occupy entire container space, either 20ft or 40ft – in such cases, FCL is economical and faster than LCL. Since you have the entire container booked for yourself, you can expect lesser handling points and faster deliveries when compared to LCL shipments.

Given these considerations, here are some reasons why sea shipping from China to Saudi Arabia can be beneficial to you –

Cost Effective – This is the most obvious one. Sea freight is easy on the pocket when your shipment weight is over 100 kgs. When having shipments not enough to fill one whole 30 ft or 40 ft container, LCL proves to be economical, otherwise FCL should be considered.

Time is Not A Concern – Shipping by sea from China to KSA can take up to 40 days depending on several factors. When you have enough time at hand to deliver shipments, sea freight is the most economical choice for you.

High volume Shipments – When cargo size is big enough to cost you loads with air freight, sea freight should be considered. If you have bulk cargo, or shipments that are well over 100 kgs, shipping by sea would be a better option.

Cargo Type – When dealing with general or dry cargo that are not prone to damage, temperature changes, do not have a low shelf life and are not fragile / delicate, sea freight can be considered.

How Can ProConnect Integrated Logistics Help?

Shipping involves many procedures to be followed, like –

  • Choosing the best mode of shipping
  • Booking space with the best airline or shipping line
  • Compliance to laws of origin and destination countries
  • Required documents and administrative work.
  • Customs Clearance in both countries
  • Insurance assistance

In order to import to Saudi Arabia, it is important you are well aware of all the requirements, which will keep delays or losses at bay. An experienced freight forwarder like ProConnect Integrated Logistics with local knowledge, agents and network can help you get your shipments from China to Saudi Arabia rather swiftly, be it via air or sea.

If you have shipments scheduled to be shipped from China to Saudi Arabia in the near future, evaluate our quote and services. Register your enquiry with us.

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