CEO of Kingston Wharves Limited Mark Williams observed that the company’s Click N Collect contactless cargo clearance service is introducing efficiencies normally associated with air freight to the sea freight industry. He was speaking in an interview following the company’s recent Annual General Meeting held virtually.
“Online shopping with its close alignment to air freight is a rapidly growing sector that has seen even greater growth since COVID-19. Yet, 90% of world trade takes place by sea, and sea freight is still the most cost-effective way to move especially large bulky items internationally. There is also a growing trend for persons to shop online and ship by sea freight,” Mr. Williams said.
However, having become accustomed to the e-commerce and airfreight modus operandi, customers are now expecting faster and more efficient cargo delivery; they have less tolerance for long wait times and other inefficiencies,” the CEO observed.
As a shipping and logistics company, Kingston Wharves recognises the importance of the sea freight industry embracing a new mind-set and making the necessary investments to provide greater convenience to customers to enhance service delivery and increase competitiveness.
“When a customer orders something from Amazon or other online retailers, they simply place the order and an efficient back office ecosystem does the rest. The customer’s local air freight agent does the clearing; the person only has to pay the necessary charges and pick up the shipment once it has arrived in the island,” the KWL CEO observed.
Mr. Williams explained that the Kingston Wharves Click N Collect service, which is a contactless cargo clearance option available to personal shippers sending barrels, boxes, pallets and other Less than Container Load (LCL) cargo, takes the same approach.
“The entire clearance process is done by Kingston Wharves in collaboration with Jamaica Customs and the customer’s agent. The customer simply registers via the Kingston Wharves website, pay his or her charges online (including customs charges) and pick up at his or her convenience by appointment,” he stated, adding: “Click N Collect has made it safer and more convenient for customers to conduct business during the COVID 19 pandemic.”
Mr. Williams expressed the confidence that the entire sea freight industry will become more competitive by assuring customers the same level of convenience as airfreight, adding: “We are seeking to lead the industry in this paradigm shift.”
Kingston Wharves has made significant investment in technology to drive its customer service delivery, strengthen its security network while streamlining its terminal operations and logistics services.
In addition to the Click N Collect cargo clearance, KWL has introduced electronic payment methods such as its KW Mobile App and Webpay (the App’s web version); both allow customers to pay for shipments from anywhere in the world, at any time of the day or night. Payment to Kingston Wharves can also be facilitated by wire transfer.
Persons seeking to access the Click N Collect Service and KWL’s online payment options should visit eservices.kingstonwharves.com.