What route does the import rail service take from Wuhan / Xi'an, China to Davies Turner Depot, UK?
By Rail:       Kazakhstan / Russia / Belarus / Poland / Duisburg, Germany.
By Truck:   Duisburg to  Rotterdam
By Ferry:    Rotterdam to  Purfleet, Essex
By Truck:   Purfleet to Davies Turner depot - Birmingham / Bristol / Dartford / Glasgow / Manchester

Where are the goods loaded in China for the import rail services?
For Wuhan our agent ASTI use the rail terminals depot at Wuhan for the packing and loading of containers, with ASTI staff present to supervise loading.

For imports, are goods customs cleared in Duisburg, Germany or the U.K?
After arriving via Rail, the container is arranged under T1 bond to a Davies Turner depot to enable customs clearance to take place upon arrival Davies Turner warehouse.

Does the same train departing China arrive in Duisburg, Germany?
No, there is a different rail gauge in Kazakhstan and Russia requiring transfer of containers from one rail unit to another, this usually takes under an hour to achieve when entering Alashankou, Kazakhstan (from China) and then exiting Brest, Belarus (to enter Poland), prior to arrival Duisburg, Germany.

What  terms of shipment can be offered for rail?
Ex works factory terms  are recommended  to assist with the control of movement and ensure LCL cut off is met, although FCA Wuhan terms  are available if you prefer (under FCA terms, shipper responsible for all local charges up to departure Wuhan rail terminal).

If you have historically bought on FOB terms  for your ocean movements and wish to change to EXW terms for rail movements,  we recommend you re-negotiate with your supplier to obtain the relevant reduction in costs which will help offset the additional cost of arranging via rail on Ex works terms.

Are rail services available  from China to other countries in mainland Europe?
Yes, the service options are currently as follows;
Hefei – Warsaw / Hamburg / Neuss /  Helsinki / Rotterdam
Wuhan – Warsaw / Moscow / Duisburg
Xi’an – Warsaw / Prague / Budapest / Budapest / Milan (recently commenced)
Chengdu – Warsaw / Rotterdam
Changsha – Minsk
Xiamen – Hamburg / Warsaw

Are 20ft/40ft/HC options available via rail?
20ft containers are available in limited quantity, restricted to certain routes, however, costs currently exceed those of 40ft containers, therefore, unless 20ft containers are required for stability of cargo  during movement we would ship equivalent 20ft loads as LCL, which still offer customers significant cost savings against air.  40ft/HC container movements are accepted and we can quote for this.

What are the size and weight parameters for a LCL rail shipment?
A standard shipment must measure less than 2m long / 2m wide / 2m high per piece and weigh no more than 3 tonnes. Please  discuss with your usual Davies Turner contact should your cargo exceed any of these parameters

Are open top or flat rack containers available via rail?

Can cargo insurance be arranged for goods shipped via rail?
Davies Turner are able to offer competitive cargo insurance cover for goods arranged via Rail. Please note that should you already have marine insurance cover, this will NOT apply to rail movements and specific insurance should be arranged.

Is there any risk in terms of security of the cargo whilst in transit?
There is minimal risk of pilferage as containers are sealed upon departure China and unless containers are examined in transit the seal is then not broken until arrival at a Davies Turner warehouse in the UK. To date we have had no reports of any losses or damages.

What cargo is prohibited via rail?
The current list of prohibited cargo is as follows, please note that this is not an exhaustive list .
Perishable / Non Perishable Foodstuffs
Liquid Goods
Hazardous / dangerous Goods
Chemical Goods
Medicines (drugs)
Pet / Animal Products (and all related items)
Magnets (any products containing magnets)

Can hazardous shipments or limited quantity hazardous  be moved via rail?
No, the rail service ex Wuhan only accepts non hazardous cargo at this time. Batteries (both alkaline and lithium) can be accepted ex Suzhou rail terminal (subject to surcharges) although we would need to arrange via Poland for unpack and LTL trailer door delivery to UK and this will incur higher costs in comparison to our directly consol ex Wuhan (non haz), but will still offer significant cost savings versus Airfreight.

What are the temperature variances along the rail route?
The temperatures depending on time of year can go from minus 40 degrees Celsius to plus 40 degrees Celsius.

What is the maximum weight for a FCL rail  movement?
The standard maximum weight of cargo for a FCL is 22t. With prior agreement (dependant on the total cargo weight booked for the rail departure), 24t may be permitted.

Is space limited on the rail service?
The rail services are limited to approximately 42 containers  per train, so there are limitations, however,  Air Sea Transport have very close relationships with the relevant rail companies to assist in gaining space and new services are continuing to be developed (such as Yiwu etc), therefore, capacity expansion is expected and we are a long way from reaching any limits as to capacity at this time!  For 40ft/HC containers – 8 days prior notice of booking required. Once booked, client committed to rail space / costs.

Can shipments be arranged under L/C (Letter of Credit)?
No, only shipments arranged under t/x or express release.

What size are the different gauge rails?
The rails in the former USSR (Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus) measure 1520mm, along the rest of the route for China and Europe they measure 1435mm.


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