Ocean Freight Forwarder

Coordinate shipments of goods that travel on sea-going cargo ships.
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Quick Stats

Very Good

Salary Range
$22,000 – $58,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Ocean Freight Forwarders do?

Sea travel has been a popular way to transport goods since the days of early explorers. It’s no different today—well, except that the routes are now well established and the ships have communication with the mainland. With these improvements in technology and seafaring know-how, businesses are relying more and more on ships to move merchandise from one location to another. It’s the job of the Ocean Freight Forwarder to coordinate those shipments.

When you’re an Ocean Freight Forwarder, your customers expect you to know how to hitch a ride across the ocean on a vessel bound for their destination. Maybe they need to get supplies to their manufacturing plant in New Guinea or hope to deliver an elephant to a zoo in San Diego. Whatever the merchandise, you need your Ocean Freight Forwarder toolbox to get it there.

And not only get it there, but make sure it gets delivered on time, under budget, and in good condition. That requires contacts. You have list of reliable shippers who can get the job done. This part of your job is similar to a Marketing Representative ’s job in that you build and maintain mutually beneficial relationships.

In addition to your knowledge about the shipping industry and building a plump black book of contacts, you’re also an Economic Officer of sorts. That’s because you’re an expert in understanding the shipping and receiving requirements of different countries around the world.

Easy, no. Challenging, yes. Rewarding, absolutely!

Should I be an Ocean Freight Forwarder?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Persistent: You keep pushing through, even when faced with tough obstacles.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.

  • Also known as: Ocean Transportation Intermediary

    How to become an Ocean Freight Forwarder

    Ocean Freight Forwarders generally graduate from high school and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Associate’s degree to increase your chances of finding a good job. Check out these schools offering Ocean Freight Forwarder-related education!
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