What Is a Block Space Agreement

First of all, we need to talk about how air cargo moves physically. In the same way that sea freight is containerized before being loaded onto a ship, air cargo is divided into standard “contours” called unit load devices (ULDs). ULDs are identified by three-letter codes such as AKE, AKH and PMC. Some are containers and others are just metal pallets. Each has a specific shape that is designed to fit a specific part of a particular aircraft. This is similar to the fact that every ULD has a “parking space” on the plane. Each aircraft has a very specific layout of parking spaces, and each parking lot can accommodate one or more types of ULDs. There is no central, liquid on-demand market for air cargo, but an informal network of directly communicating air planners and carrier representatives. For example, the spot market for air cargo from Hong Kong consists of a flood of phone calls and WhatsApp messages between carriers and carriers, asking if the necessary space is available and at what price per kilogram. If Flexport is to transport a 1000 kilogram cargo of six pallets from Hong Kong to Atlanta, where there is no BSA, a Hong Kong-based flight planner will contact all airlines with flights between Hong Kong and Atlanta, provide shipping details and ask for fare conditions. At Flexport, the Air team manages all facets of air cargo transportation from origin to destination.

To do this, we match demand (freight) to supply (flights). The offer is somewhat fungible – the cargo does not care whether it is on one plane or the other, as long as both are able to move it from point A to point B. There`s nothing Flexport can do to make an aircraft fly faster (although we speed up ground handling using our own warehouses), but the air crew can make shipping on these planes cheaper by optimizing our consolidation, the number of shipments on each flight. For example, the Boeing 777 is the most common passenger aircraft between Hong Kong International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport.² Hundreds of passengers sit on the main deck (the upper deck), but the lower deck has ten parking spaces for P6P ULDs, each measuring 125 x 96 x 64 inches.3 Most major airlines today have codeshare partnerships with others. Airlines. And code-sharing is a key feature of large airline alliances. As a general rule, codeshare agreements are also part of commercial agreements between airlines of the same airline alliances. Under a codeshare agreement, participating airlines may provide a common flight number for a variety of reasons, including: A codeshare agreement, also known as codeshare, is a common commercial agreement in the aviation industry where two or more airlines publish and market the same flight under their own airline name and flight number (the “Airline Flight Code”).

as part of their published flight schedule or schedule. Typically, a flight is operated by an airline (technically referred to as an “administering airline”[1]), while the seats on the flight are sold by all cooperating airlines using their own designation and flight number. Sourcing your own plane is like signing a very, very large allocation with about 40 ULDs per flight. For more information on why and how, check out an upcoming blog post. Under a codeshare agreement, the airline that manages the flight (the one that owns the operating permits, airport slots and flight planning/control, and is responsible for groundhandling services) is commonly referred to as the operating airline, often abbreviated to OPE CXR, although the term IATA SSIM “carrier administrator” is more precise. The reason for this is that a third airline may be involved, usually in the event that the airline that originally planned to operate the flight must hire a subcontractor to operate the flight on its behalf (usually a wet lease, that is, an aircraft is leased with the crew and all facilities to fly, often due to capacity limitations, technical problems, etc.) In this case, the air carrier carrying the passenger should be designated as the operating air carrier, since it is the one carrying the passengers/cargo. A stupid question: export customs clearance activities must always be carried out (e.g. from the EU to Asia?). What exactly are the documents to create? Do I need a freight forwarder for this or can a company create such documents itself? Thank you in advance for your answer On the other side of the spectrum, imagine that you have a reserve of metal rods.

It weighs 1000 kilograms, but has a volume of only 1 cubic meter. So you can mount it on the W2 and fill all your swivel weight, but you still have 9 cubic meters of empty space. Offer refers to any capacity available to a carrier to carry air cargo. The capacity is provided by the airlines, which we call the airlines. Freight forwarders sell capacity to freight forwarders, and freight forwarders try to fill that capacity with freight. The capacity can be on passenger flights or on special cargo ships. Flexport purchases capacity through three main channels: 1) long-term contracts called allocations, 2) the spot market and 3) partnership agreements. Now that we have briefly described what demand and supply are, how can we bring them together? In other words, given a particular air cargo, how does Flexport decide to use it on our own 747, on an allocation like a hard BSA, on the spot market or with a partner? Allocations are the most important procurement component for a large freight forwarder. A distribution defines a “promised weight” between one or more airports, and it is the responsibility of the freight forwarder to achieve this promised weight through tenders for freight. For example, Flexport may have an allowance with Happy Airlines, which stipulates that Flexport arrives at least 100 tons of cargo each month on all Happy Airlines flights departing from Hong Kong and anywhere in the United States (the HKG – US Trade Lane). It is more common to reach the majority of the promised tonnage by delivering fully assembled ULDs, but the carrier also has the option of bidding on bulk cargo. In this case, the airline builds its own ULDs and mixes Flexport`s cargo with cargo from different sources going to the same destination.

There are also codeshare agreements between airlines and railways, officially known as air-rail alliances, which are usually marketed as “Rail & Fly” due to the popularity of Deutsche Bahn`s codeshare with many airlines. [5] They involve some integration of the two modes of transport, e.B. to find the fastest connection and allow you to change planes and trains with a single ticket. This allows passengers to book an entire trip in one go, often at a discounted price compared to separate tickets. Luckily for our customers, Flexport loves math and data science, and we`ve developed an algorithm that finds the perfect match for every shipment on every available flight, ensuring the lowest possible cost. We do this with an operations research section called discrete optimization, and we`re happy to share this with you in the next article. This BSA specifies that Flexport will receive a ULD W2 (a specific PMC outline) every Monday throughout the 2019 calendar year. For each flight, Flexport must deliver the fully assembled W2 to Happy Airlines` cargo terminal, which can be loaded directly onto the aircraft.

The term “code” refers to the identifier used in a flight plan, usually the two-digit IATA airline code and flight number. Thus, XX224 (flight number 224, which is operated by the xx airline) could also be sold by the YY airline as YY568 and by ZZ as ZZ9876. The airlines YY and ZZ are called in this case “Marketing Airlines” (sometimes abbreviated MKT CXR for “Marketing Carrier”). Cargo-Force specializes in the transport of air cargo. Cargo-Force and its team of air cargo experts and air cargo transport experts are known to handle air cargo shipments from the smallest to the largest. Air Cargo Flexport has an additional option for air cargo transport that most carriers do not have: our own cargo 747. We rent this aircraft from Plus Logistics and it flies between Hong Kong, Los Angeles and Chicago. When the carrier delivers a ULD, it must follow very specific rules in the allocation agreement that specify elements such as dates, minimum and maximum weight, total volume and specific contour. The aircraft can carry ULDs from dozens of sources next to Flexport, so the carrier sets these rules so that its flights are sufficiently loaded and properly balanced. Our premium airport-to-airport express product is offered worldwide. This product is based on one or more fixed ULD positions on a specific flight and is guaranteed for a defined period of time under medium and long-term contracts. A perfect consolidation would be a combination of these spring cushions and metal rods that fill the entire volume of the ULD while reaching the swivel weight.

In this way, you will use the 1000 kilograms you want to pay and also avoid wasting any amount at your disposal. (NB: There is another concept called toll weight that affects the amount the carrier charges the customer, but it does not affect how we assign shipments to ULDs.