SHIPPING INSIGHTS

DHX Press Room

Welcome to the DHX - Dependable Hawaiian Express Shipping Insights
Read about all the latest news, company announcements, events and industry-position posts here.


  • Shipping ocean freight to or from Guam

What is the cost to ship to Guam?

Shipping ocean freight to or from Guam can be a complex situation for a variety of reasons. Only one carrier services Guam directly with a USA stop-off from the USA mainland – Matson Navigation Company (Matson). Matson’s transit time from Long Beach (SoCA), which includes a stop off in Hawaii, is 12 days from Long Beach to Guam, four days longer from Oakland and five days longer from Seattle.

American President Lines (APL) also ships containers to Guam but their transit time is not less than 23 days from Los Angeles, and perhaps longer depending on the vessel the Guam container gets loaded on and the foreign port where unloaded before being loaded onto a feeder vessel into Guam. APL does not offer any alternative transit times for container shipping to Guam from Oakland or Seattle, but modern day trucking services will allow them to service those areas, although less timely than the Matson direct service.

APL and Matson both have fully developed and integrated rail services to complement those container loads shipping to Guam from origins other than the West Coast. They are both well-respected carriers, and have a lot to offer shippers or consignees. Ask yourself how important the transit time is for the container load move to Guam and can you afford a delay in your goods arriving? If these conditions are ok, then a less expensive container load rate to ship to Guam available via APL transshipment is probably your best value. But if you need speedier transit time due to shipment arrival expectations or container content damage, are worried about humidity while on the vessel, need additional handling of the container during the transshipment process, price/value is not the sole focal point, and/or a delay might hurt business profits, then Matson is a better alternative.

A shipper to Guam also needs to be aware that Guam has its own Customs offices, officers, and laws, in addition to USA Customs offices, officers, regulations and laws. Guam Customs is responsible for, among other things, ensuring the goods arriving from the USA have submitted a commercial invoice, and consignees pay a Guam Use Tax or Gross Receipts Tax, as appropriate. The tax is 4% of the cost of the goods shipped into Guam if the merchandise is not held for resale and is used in the business. If you are working with a freight forwarder such as DHX - Dependable Hawaiian Express, the law requires the forwarder to collect taxes on taxable goods and remit it to Guam authorities. The rule of thumb is that if it’s sold as part of your normal business, no use tax is due; but if the goods are supplies and overhead items to be used in your business rather than sold, then a 4% Use Tax applies.

Another complex issue when using APL is that due to the vessel arriving at a foreign port prior to transshipping to Guam, an Automated Manifest System (AMS) has to be filed, meaning the shipper must provide the Harmonized Code tariff number for what they are shipping. DHX - Dependable Hawaiian Express can help you with that should you decide you’d like to move your containers to Guam through us.

There are also eastbound services available from Guam to the USA mainland or Hawaii, and additional information we can provide for shipping from non-USA origins into Guam. DHX also offers container load and less than container load services from the Hawaiian Islands to Guam. We look forward to responding to your requests for further information: call us at (888) 488-4888, Ext. 2017 (U.S. only)!


  • Effective July 1, 2017 - The New India Shipping Tax Reform

The most important issue in shipping to, from or within India currently is the new India Tax reform

scheduled to take effect July 1, 2017. This new tax structure will have a direct impact on logistics providers and cost structures. Whether shipping full container loads (FCL) to India, or shipping less than container load (LCL) shipments to India, this new law will impact ultimate cargo and logistics costs.

Currently, each of India’s 29 states taxes the goods that move across their borders at various rates. As a result, freight that moves across the country is taxed multiple times. The Indian government is about to roll out the new indirect tax program, GST, which has been in the works for over 12 years.

The impact of the GST on the individual companies located in India:

  • The consumer durables sector is expected to witness maximum drop in the logistics costs as a percentage of total sales, as their warehouses are built in certain specific states to avoid interstate tax.
  • Consumer-oriented industries are going to realize a higher impact from GST on their operations model rather than capital intensive industries, since they will work with cheaper labor and travel further to markets.
  • As individual companies react to the changing of the law, the long-term economics of doing business efficiently outweigh the economics of where to be located to avoid being taxed. It remains to be seen what the ultimate impact will be on the economy or the country, but DGX predicts the Indian Government will rise to the challenge and make adjustments where needed to ensure a single industry does not become the poster child for unfairness.

From our standpoint and the standpoint of other 3PLs, the impact of the new GST on third party logistic service providers will be as follows:

  • Post-GST implementation, most 3PLs will have to restructure their assets and realign their operations with changes in the operations of their customers in the new scenario.
  • Currently, many 3PLs have warehouses located near major distribution centers of their key clients (different industries) irrespective of geographic disadvantage, mainly to avoid interstate taxes.
  • However, post-GST implementation 3PLs are expected to build integrated warehouses at logistics suitable locations. So accordingly, 3PLs will have to restructure their assets to accommodate the long distance consignments which will occur with this scenario of free movement of goods across the country.
  • The consumer durables sector is expected to witness maximum drop in the logistics costs as a percentage of total sales, as their warehouses are built in different states to avoid interstate tax. Mostly, the consumer-oriented industries are going to have the highest impact of GST on its operations model rather than capital-intensive industries.

How this will impact the freight rates with a change of cargo movement from direct to each state versus to regional DCs (spoke-hub distributions) is yet to be determined by carriers.

The DGX India headquarters in Mumbai is ready to take on these changes and provide our customers with added-value solutions as they evolve in their supply chain based on these reforms.

What is GST? How does it work?
GST is a single, indirect tax for the whole nation, which will make India one unified common market.
It's a single tax on the supply of goods and services, directly from the manufacturer to the consumer. Credits of input taxes paid at each stage will be available in the subsequent stage of value addition, which makes GST essentially a tax only on value addition at each stage. The final consumer will thus bear only the GST charged by the last dealer in the supply chain, with set-off benefits at all the previous stages.

What are final GST rate slabs?
The Goods and Services Tax (GST) will be levied at multiple rates ranging from 0% to 28%. The GST council finalized a four-tier GST tax structure of 5%, 12%, 18% and 28%, with lower rates for essential items and the highest for luxury and de-merits goods that would also attract an additional “cess.” In India, "cess" is an import or sales tax on a commodity.

Service tax will go up from 15% to 18%. The services being taxed at lower rates, owing to the provision of abatement, such as train tickets, will fall in the lower slabs.

In order to control inflation, essential items including food, which presently constitute roughly half of the consumer inflation basket, will be taxed at zero rate.

The lowest rate of 5% would be for common use items. There would be two standard rates of 12 per cent and 18 per cent, which would fall on the bulk of the goods and services. This includes fast-moving consumer goods.

Highest tax slab will be applicable to items which are currently taxed at 30-31% (excise duty plus VAT).

Ultra-luxuries, demerit and sin goods (like tobacco and aerated drinks), will attract a cess for a period of five years on top of the 28% GST.

The collection from this cess as well as that of the clean energy cess would create a revenue pool which would be used for compensating states for any loss of revenue during the first five years of implementation of GST.

Finance minister said that the cess would be lapsable after five years.

Which Taxes at the Centre and State level are being subsumed into GST?
At the Central level, the following taxes are being subsumed:

  1. Central Excise Duty
  2. Additional Excise Duty
  3. Service Tax
  4. Additional Customs Duty commonly known as Countervailing Duty
  5. Special Additional Duty of Customs

At the State level, the following taxes are being subsumed:

  1. Subsuming of State Value Added Tax/Sales Tax
  2. Entertainment tax (other than the tax levied by the local bodies), Central Sales Tax (levied by the Centre and collected by the States)
  3. Octroi and Entry tax
  4. Purchase tax
  5. Luxury tax, and
  6. Taxes on lottery, betting and gambling


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  • Shipping Containers to and from Hawaii

There are a variety of items to consider when determining how to ship a container to Hawaii. The first couple of items are the transit time and deadlines you may have to meet.

From our experience on timing and deadlines, no one is faster than Matson Navigation Company, a primary mode of ocean transportation for DHX - Dependable Hawaiian Express. Matson’s transit times are shorter than the other ocean carrier by a day from Long Beach, and out of Oakland and Seattle. The other carrier, Pasha Hawaii, does not compete time-wise. Barge services offering Hawaiian Island connections also do not compete time-wise to or from Hawaii. So, if you are under a deadline or transit time is important, your first option will be Matson.

Another important factor is the origin of your container being shipped to Hawaii. From most origins within the US other than the West Coast, the rail transit times and rail service between the two are very similar. Pasha’s overall rail/inland may be a little less expensive, usually within $100 of Matson’s. Most intermodal or rail moves get shipped into Los Angeles for the subsequent sailing to Hawaii.

You’ll also want to look into the pricing of your container shipment to Hawaii. Depending on whether your shipment to Hawaii is recurring in nature or not, and depending if you are a business or an individual, your pricing will normally be at published tariff rates. If you are not a business and if your shipment of containers to Hawaii is not recurring in frequency, the ocean carriers have tariff rates allowing them to charge everyone uniformly.

Matson tariffs have evolved over a 100+ years, and they are based on a combination of the service offerings Matson has, the value of the goods in the container, the likelihood that what's in the container can be damaged, the weight of the container’s contents, etc. The competitor to Matson is Pasha and they normally have a tariff that is quite similar to Matson’s tariff, so the pricing is similar except if one of the carriers can be negotiated with to price their shipments differently.

DHX - Dependable Hawaiian Express has people who are experts in the carriers’ tariffs and have the knowledge to help you ensure your shipment arrives on time, intact, and competitively priced.

We represent a very healthy option for a business interested in reducing their rate basis as well as for those looking for answers to questions with respect to shipping containers to Hawaii.


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DHX  Dependable Hawaiian Express, Inc., Freight Forwarding, East Rancho Dominguez, CA
DHX is a Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau Member