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Most frequent questions

  • Why Choose SL Europe Agency?
  • What is a freight forwarder?
  • What is the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) Container Weight Requirement?
  • What countries or regions do you ship to?
  • Can you ship my vehicle internationally?
Why Choose SL Europe Agency?

SL Europe Agency is most innovative International freight forwarder company located in Milan ITALY that reaches out to provide comprehensive solutions for the shipments. The young and dynamic management team at SL Europe Agency contributes greatly with their new thinking by adapting new technology, applying latest and modern methods in the field to help the needs of customers.

What is a freight forwarder?

Freight forwarding is a service used by companies that deal in international or multi-national import and export. While the freight forwarder doesn’t actually move the freight itself, it acts as an intermediary between the client and various transportation services. Sending products from one international destination to another can involve a multitude of carriers, requirements and legalities. A freight forwarding service handles the considerable logistics of this task for the client, relieving what would otherwise be a formidable burden.

Freight forwarding services guarantee that products will get to the proper destination by an agreed upon date, and in good condition. The freight forwarding service utilizes established relationships with carriers of all kinds, from air freighters and trucking companies, to rail freighters and ocean liners. Freight forwarding services negotiate the best possible price to move the product along the most economical route by working out various bids and choosing the one that best balances speed, cost and reliability.

A freight forwarding service generally provides one or more estimates to the client along with advisement, when necessary. Considerations that effect price will range from origin and destination to special requirements, such as refrigeration or, for example, transport of potentially hazardous materials. Assuming the client accepts the forwarder’s bid, the freight is readied for shipping. The freight forwarding service then undertakes the responsibility of arranging the transport from point of origin to destination.

One of the many advantages of using freight forwarding is that it handles ancillary services that are a part of the international shipping business. Insurance and customs documentation and clearance are some examples. As a consolidator, a freight forwarding service might also provide Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier (NVOCC) documentation, or bills of lading. Warehousing, risk assessment and management, and methods of international payment are also commonly provided to the client by the freight forwarding service.

A good freight forwarding service can save the client untold time and potential headaches while providing reliable transportation of products at competitive rates. A freight forwarding service is an asset to almost any company dealing in international transportation of goods, and is especially helpful when in-house resources are not versed in international shipping procedures.

What is the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) Container Weight Requirement?

The International Maritime Organization (IMO), announced the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) requirements under the amendments to chapter VI of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), will become mandatory on July 1st, 2016.

SOLAS is an IMO (a United Nations specialized agency) treaty & generally regarded as the most important of all international maritime treaties concerning the safety & security of shipping & the prevention of marine pollution.

Effective from July 1st, 2016, ocean carrier vessel operators & port terminal representatives in approximately 170 countries, will be prohibited from loading cargo shipping containers aboard a vessel for export, if the container’s gross mass has not been verified.

Shippers are responsible for providing mandatory verification of the VGM for all packed cargo shipping containers, prior to tendering cargo & loading on a vessel. IMO guidelines state the Shipper is the entity or person named on the bill of lading or sea waybill. The Shipper is responsible for accurately recording, duly signing & authorizing the VGM data on the shipment documents & providing to ocean carrier vessel operators & port terminal representatives, for use in the ship stowage plans. The weighing must be done after stuffing & securing of containerized cargo in one of two approved ways as follows:

Method #1: After packing & sealing a container, the Shipper may weigh or arrange a third party to weigh the packed container using calibrated & certified equipment.

Method #2: The shipper or a third party may weigh all packages & cargo items, including the mass of pallets & other packing material securing the cargo in the shipping container, by adding the tare mass of the container to the mass sum of the cargo, using a certified method as outlined by the IMO. Any third party that has performed some or all of the packing of the container should inform the Shipper of the mass of the cargo items & packing materials that the party has packed into the container in order to facilitate the Shipper’s verification of the gross mass of the packed container.

Estimating weights of the contents of the container & adding those weights to the container’s tare weight is not permitted. Shippers cannot use weights for any cargo in a container that someone else has provided, with the exception of original, sealed packages printed with the accurate mass of the cargo items, marked by the manufacturer directly on the original packaging.

Ocean carriers have advised to use the weight given on the container, unless they have provided another method for Shippers to verify the actual tare weight for each container. It is important to note that some empty container tare weights printed on the side of the container could be incorrect, due to containers often having to be repaired or reinforced using metal.

What countries or regions do you ship to?
We ship worldwide. There may be particular locations that we might require additional information to ship to. This is a rare case but if this happens, we will get in touch with you ASAP.
Can you ship my vehicle internationally?

Yes we can please send through a request for quote with your details and we can provide a quote.

Another set of questions

  • What are the risks of maritime transport?
  • What is a ro-ro ship?
  • Can SL Europe Agency handle door delivery at destination?
  • What is customs clearance?
  • How are dangerous or IMO goods classified?
  • What is freight consolidation?
  • Does SL Europe Agency offer cargo insurance?
  • What is a Bill of Lading?
  • What is the difference between LCL and FCL?
  • Who is the consignee and who is the consignor (or shipper)?
What are the risks of maritime transport?
  • Delayed shipment: The most common causes of delay are inefficient management of port times and formalities. Other variables may also affect the shipment, such as circumstances of force majeure, like a storm for instance, or, in some parts of the world, the risk of a pirate attack.
  • Lost goods: While this represents a very low risk today, it can occur in the event of problems such as the boat sinking or breaking down, as well as due to robbery or theft in ports of loading and destination in countries with high levels of corruption.
  • Moisture, humidity or extreme temperatures:Environmental conditions must be perfectly controlled to prevent the cargo from being rendered unusable due to moisture, humidity or extreme heat or cold. All cargo must therefore be transported in containers suited to their particular characteristics and checked to ensure that they are properly closed. They must also be correctly loaded, unloaded and stored.
  • Contamination: Interaction between different goods can ruin them. The goods must therefore be well packaged and properly stowed in the hold to prevent their contamination.
  • Natural disasters: Natural disasters are becoming more frequent and serious in recent years; this represents the most unpredictable risk on the list.
  • Computer threats: This is one of the new risks of international maritime transport since the famous NotPeya attack suffered by Maersk. Companies and ports are therefore currently working on logistics cybersecurity.


What is a ro-ro ship?
Ro-Ro or roll-on/roll off ships are vessels designed to transport vehicles on wheels. They are equipped with ramps and platforms to secure private cars, industrial vehicles or even trucks loaded with freight for long-distance journeys. There are also hybrid versions of these ships, combining vehicle and passengers transport (ferries), and others which transport container vehicles (Ro-Lo).
Can SL Europe Agency handle door delivery at destination?
Yes. We require your full delivery address and contact information at destination in order to make arrangements for freight delivery.
What is customs clearance?
All formalities and requirements to be completed for goods entering and leaving a specific national territory in order to control and approve their transportation. The customs agent is responsible for completing these formalities on behalf of the importer or exporter, and for submitting a declaration of information to the competent customs authority in each case.
How are dangerous or IMO goods classified?

Dangerous goods are classified according to the ADR (European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road), as follows:

      • Class 1: Explosive substances and articles
      • Class 2: Gases
      • Class 3: Flammable liquids
      • Class 4.1: Flammable solids
      • Class 4.2: Substances liable to spontaneous combustion
      • Class 4.3: Substances which, in contact with water, emit flammable gases
      • Class 5.1: Oxidizing substances
      • Class 5.2: Organic peroxides
      • Class 6.1: Toxic substances
      • Class 6.2: Infectious substances
      • Class 7: Radioactive materials
      • Class 8: Corrosive substances
      • Class 9: Miscellaneous dangerous substances and articles
What is freight consolidation?
This is a practice whereby the cargoes of one or several shippers are bundled together for transport under a single transport document. It is also known as groupage when different cargoes are combined to fill a single container.
Does SL Europe Agency offer cargo insurance?
Yes. It is not mandatory to obtain cargo insurance, however it is good practice or your shipment could be at risk of theft, damage or loss. Please contact SL EUROPE AGENCY for more information on cargo insurance.
What is a Bill of Lading?
A Bill of Lading (B/L or BOL) is an official shipping document containing details about the shipment. The release of this document to the intended recipient of goods is representative of transfer of ownership, so it is often held until final payment is complete. The original paper B/L or electronic release (see Telex Release) is required for the delivery of goods.
What is the difference between LCL and FCL?

Full Container Load (FCL) is a container shipping option where a container is exclusively used for a single shipment and the container is not shared with other cargo shipments, and the costs are borne by one party. Even if the container isn’t enough completely filled to the brim with cargo, the shipping party can choose to still opt for it.

Less than Container Load (LCL) is usually chosen when the there aren’t enough goods to fill up and entire container. Various cargo shipments share the same container as well as the container shipping costs.

Who is the consignee and who is the consignor (or shipper)?
The consignor (or shipper) is the person who is the originator of the shipment. A consignee is the person who is the receiver of the shipment.

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We focus on companywide knowledge-sharing platforms, SL Europe Agency consist of a wide range of information-exchange tools and techniques thus trying to create a truly knowledge-sharing corporate culture.

On-Time Delivery

We provide standard and dedicated transport services, mandatory schedules and door-to-door service options for the delivery of your shipments even before the goods are needed in the warehouse or at trade fair.

Client support

SL Europe Agency  has vast management expertise in the freight forwarding, with experts committed to optimizing your inquiries. We’ll support you with an all-inclusive offer for managing your purchase orders and invoices while improving your service.


Headquarter: Via E. De Amicis 67
20092 Cinisello Balsamo-Milan-Italy
Phone: +39 0299240412
Fax: +39 0256561707
Vat tax:  IT11261710963

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