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Ocean and Air Cargo Shipping From Germany to China

Get information and quote for FCL, LCL and Air shipping

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When exporting or importing from Germany to China, two of the world’s leading manufacturers, use Shipa Freight. It’s a premium online platform that eases the stresses and strains of international shipping. We’re an online freight forwarder that’s opening ocean trade lanes and air freight routes to all kinds of businesses.

We speed-up much of the time-consuming administrative tasks associated with shipping commercial goods, so you can concentrate on generating that next big international order.

A new decade calls for a fresh approach to shipping, and that’s exactly what Shipa Freight offers. We use technology that enables quick quotes, faster bookings and payments, and real-time tracking, transforming the way businesses import and export from Germany to China.

Whether your shipment is small and urgent or large and bulky, we can recommend the best way to send your freight from Germany to China. And you get a quote with no hidden charges, so you’ll know exactly what you’re paying for.

Choose the modern and professional shipping service that’s backed-up by the expertise of our parent company Agility Logistics, and let us make your next export or import from Germany to China easier.

Ship a Container From Germany to China

Freight forwarder launching freight by rocket from Germany to China, adjacent to flags of Germany and China

Choose ocean shipping if your business contacts in China can afford to wait 37 to 45 days to receive your goods. That’s roughly how long it takes to ship a consignment from Germany to China as sea freight, but if it weighs over 100kg, this shipping mode is almost always more cost-effective than air freight.

Shipa Freight is ready to introduce new exporters or importers to the benefits of ocean shipping, while experienced hands will find our fast and uncomplicated approach refreshing.

Tell us about your consignment, and we will help you decide the number of containers you need and the type of container in which to ship your sea freight. We’ll also give you information about the two departure ports you can choose between in Germany, help you choose the best port of discharge in China. and give you information about LCL and FCL shipping.

Shipping a Less than Container Load (LCL) From Germany to China

If your goods won’t fill a container, LCL ocean shipping is a good option. Get a quote from Shipa Freight for your LCL, and you’ll be booking a shipping container from Germany to China in which your freight will share space with goods from other shippers. Logistical extras are required with LCL.

Your goods will be consolidated with others in port in Bremerhaven or Hamburg, and de-consolidated upon arrival in China. It’s a process that inevitably extends the transit time for your shipments, so may not be ideal if you need fast transportation.

Full Container Load (FCL) From Germany to China

With FCL, you pay for a shipping container from Germany to China exclusively for your freight. Whether your consignment ships in a big 40ft container or the smaller 20ft version, the volume of goods you pack is up to you. There’s no compulsion to fill the container, and no sharing as with LCL. Shippers choose FCL when they want less touches of their goods during shipping.

If your freight fills up to 10 or 11 standard pallets, we recommend a 20ft container. Anything up to 21 pallets will require a jumbo 40ft container. You can ask Shipa Freight to collect your container from anywhere in Germany and deliver to anywhere in China as we offer a door-to-door service. Or you can choose port-to-port, door-to-port or port-to-door deliveries.

Cargo Ports of Origin in Germany


This four-terminal North Sea port is located in Northwestern Germany and ranks as the fourth-busiest container port in Europe. Over five million TEUs are handled here annually in terminals with a combined capacity amounting to the world’s largest enclosed container processing area.

Owned By: Free Hanseatic City of Bremen.

Annual Container Volume: >5.5 million TEUs.



Home to four state-of-the-art container terminals, Hamburg is one of the world’s top 20 biggest cargo ports, and Europe’s third-largest. Dubbed ‘Germany’s gateway to the world’, this sprawling port spans a stretch of the River Elbe’s Southern bank, with a quayside and freight processing facilities large enough to process over 8.5 million TEUs per year.

Owned By: Hamburg Port Authority.

Annual Container Volume: >8.5 million TEUs.


Cargo Ports of Arrival in China


2019 was another busy year for the world’s largest container port, with Shanghai being awarded ‘World’s Best-Connected Port’ status. Get Shipa Freight to arrange for your ocean freight from Germany to China to be discharged here for easy access to your consumer markets or supply chain in and around Shanghai, Zhejiang, or Jiangsu.

Owned By: Shanghai International Port Co. Ltd.

Annual Container Volume: >40 million TEUs.



Shekou is one of several ports in Guangdong Province. It has 16 berths along the quay ready to receive your shipment from Germany. If your goods are destined for Shenzhen or elsewhere in the Pearl River Delta or Guangzhou, this small port is worthy of consideration.

Owned By: China Merchants Shekou Port Service.

Annual Container Volume: >45,000 TEUs.



One of China’s mega-ports, Xiamen boasts nine container terminals. If your goods have shipped from Germany aboard a sixth-generation container vessel, this port can handle it. There is easy onward access from here to Xiamen Island, Jiulongjiang River, and Taiwan.

Owned By: Xiamen Port Authority.

Annual Container Volume: >10 million TEUs.



The largest port in Northern China and the nation’s biggest man-made port, Tianjin serves as a gateway to the capital, Beijing. Discharge your freight from Germany here and you’ll be making use of advanced logistics facilities at the world’s ninth-largest container port.

Owned By: Tianjin Port Group Ltd.

Annual Container Volume: >16 million TEUs.



One of several ports located in the Pearl River Delta, close to the South China Sea, Nansha is a good destination port for freight from Germany if you need easy onward access to Guangzhou and Guangdong Province. Book our door to door service and we will have your container be picked up from a specified location in Germany and delivered to your customer.

Owned By: Guangzhou Port Group Co.

Annual Container Volume: >15 million TEUs.


Other Destination Ports in China

Additional Chinese ports for freight from Germany include:

  • Zhuhai
  • Fuzhou
  • Chongqing
  • Lianyungang
  • Qinzhou
  • Shantou
  • Nanjing
  • Zhongshan
  • Guangzhou
  • Qingdao
  • Dalian

Air Freight From Germany to China

There’s no FCL or LCL confusion with air freight, although your cargo will need to comply with more stringent airport rules and regulations to be accepted onboard flights from Germany to China. Air shipping is more expensive than ocean shipping, especially if you choose to fly multiple pallets, but you pay for the speed and the following additional benefits:

  • Cheaper insurance premiums (due to quicker transit times and less handling)
  • Ideal conditions for perishable and fragile goods
  • More convenience if airports are nearer your pick-up and drop-off points than seaports
  • Stricter security procedures, for added peace of mind, if you are sending high-value goods

Airports of Origin in Germany


Germany’s third-largest air cargo hub is 7km North of Dusseldorf city center and 20km Southeast of Essen. The airport has three terminals and the capacity to accommodate wide-bodied passenger planes which have more room for cargo in their substantial bellies.

China Airports Served: Beijing-Capital, Zhengzhou, Shanghai-Pudong, Nanjing, Nansha, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Qingdao.

Dusseldorf to China Cargo-Only Operators: None.



Cargo City in Frankfurt Airport is the biggest multimodal freight handling facility in Europe. The airport ranked 13th-biggest in the world for cargo in 2018, with annual throughput exceeding two million tonnes. Small wonder this is a magnet for shippers with goods to fly east to China, with direct cargo-only and passenger flights to a range of airports in the People’s Republic.

China Airports Served: Beijing-Capital, Shanghai-Pudong, Nanjing, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Qingdao, Guangzhou, Chongqing, Ningbo.

Frankfurt to China Cargo-Only Operators: Air China Cargo, China Cargo Airlines, China Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Lufthansa Cargo.



Several eco-friendly innovations make Hamburg Airport a good choice to load your consignment bound for China. Energy and water-saving facilities are helping the airport reduce its carbon footprint, and excellent transport connections make it easier to get your freight to the airport.

China Airports Served: Beijing-Capital, Shanghai-Pudong, Wuhan, Dalian, Nanjing, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Qingdao, Chongqing, Ningbo, Zhengzhou, Xiamen.

Hamburg to China Cargo-Only Operators: None.



Europe’s fifth-busiest cargo airport is Germany’s second-busiest freight center. If your manufacturing heartland is in Eastern Germany, trusting your cargo to the team at Leipzig is a good move. There are direct flights to Shanghai-Pudong, helping reduce the handling required for your goods – ideal if you are shipping delicates, perishables or high-value items.

China Airports Served: Shanghai-Pudong.

Leipzig to China Cargo-Only Operators: DHL Aviation.



Southeastern Germany’s premier airport ranks as the country’s sixth-biggest cargo hub. Save on overland transport costs from your supplier base by making this your airport of origin if your production center is in this part of Germany, as your goods can be flown direct from here in the hold of a passenger flight bound for China.

China Airports Served: Beijing-Capital, Shanghai-Pudong, Chongqing, Shenzhen, Nanjing, Qingdao.

Stuttgart to China Cargo-Only Operators: None.


Other Airports in Germany

Shipa Freight can also book your cargo onto a carrier to China from Berlin-Tegel, Nuremberg, and Munich.

Airports of Arrival in China


Like most capital cities, Beijing is well-connected to towns, cities and manufacturing centers across the country. So landing your air freight from Germany at Beijing-Capital airport leads to easy onward transit to your final destination in China. It helps explain why over two million tonnes of cargo is processed here every year.

Connected Airports in Germany: Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Stuttgart.

Germany to Beijing-Capital Cargo-Only Operators: Air China Cargo, Lufthansa Cargo.



Shenzhen Airport offers a quicker alternative destination to the nearby seaport for your exports or imports from Germany. There are fast road and rail links to the area’s Special Economic Zone, which may well be the destination for your goods shipment.

Connected Airports in Germany: Frankfurt.

Germany to Shenzhen Cargo-Only Operators: UPS Airlines.



Qingdao Liuting International is an airport in Shandong Province close to the city of Qingdao. If this region is where your goods need to be delivered, landing them at this airport makes good economic sense—and will cut overland transit times. Shipa Freight can arrange for your goods to be delivered to the airport or any onward destination in the region.

Connected Airports in Germany: Frankfurt, Hamburg, Stuttgart, Berlin-Tegel, Munich.

Germany to Qingdao Cargo-Only Operators: None.



Save time getting goods from Germany to Western China by choosing Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport as your airport of arrival. It’s China’s tenth-busiest for cargo processing with three terminals and a fourth scheduled to be built during the 2020s.

Connected Airports in Germany: Frankfurt.

Germany to Chongqing Cargo-Only Operators: Lufthansa Cargo, Air China Cargo.



Serving the capital of Jiangsu Province, Nanjing is the main home for China Postal Airlines, a cargo-only service dedicated to delivering freight to all Chinese cities. Landing your German exports here will leave you with plenty of options in terms of onward destinations.

Connected Airports in Germany: Frankfurt.

Germany to Nanjing Cargo-Only Operators: None.


Other Arrival Airports in China

Shipa Freight can also arrange for your air freight to land at the following Chinese airports:

  • Wuhan
  • Xiamen
  • Zhengzhou
  • Shanghai-Pudong
  • Guangzhou
  • Shanghai-Hongqiao

Clearing Customs in Germany and China

Complexity may have put you off using freight forwarders in the past. But Shipa Freight brings welcome simplicity to clearing customs. Our platform alerts you to the paperwork you will need to send with your consignment. The essential documents that will be required are:

  • Your commercial and tax invoice
  • Your letter of credit
  • Your certificate of origin
  • Your packing list
  • Your bill of lading (Shipa Freight will provide this)

If you want to dig deeper into these documents, you can see examples on this page. It’s just another way Shipa Freight is making it more straightforward to move commercial goods from Germany to China.

What Are the Transit Times for Cargo From Germany to China?

Sand timer with blue sand, next to and slightly in front of a desk calendar on a desktop

Flying your freight from Germany to China is fastest, with shipping times from pick-up to drop-off taking between five and eight days. Ocean shipping is a slower process, but ideal for bigger, less-urgent shipments. You’ll need to allow 37-45 days in your delivery schedule, as that’s the average time taken to ship from Europe to the Far East.

How Long Does It Take to Ship Cargo by Sea From Germany to China?

It’s called the Far East for a reason. Shipping from Germany to China by ocean is a long haul, as the examples below show:

  • Hamburg to Shanghai – 38 days FCL, 39 days LCL
  • Hamburg to Shekhou – 37 days FCL, 45 days LCL
  • Hamburg to Xiamen – 45 days FCL

How Long Does It Take to Ship Goods by Air From Germany to China?

Choosing air shipping significantly reduces the number of days your consignment will take to ship from Germany to China. Here are some typical air-freight transit times:

  • Frankfurt to Shanghai – 8 days
  • Dusseldorf to Shenzhen – 5 days
  • Hamburg to Shanghai – 8 days
  • Frankfurt to Beijing – 8 days
  • Hamburg to Xiamen – 8 days

What’s the Cost of Ocean and Air Shipping From Germany to China?

Every shipment is different, whether it’s the nature, weight, volume or dimensions of the goods being sent, and every Shipa Freight quote reflects that. Yours will depend on the information you give us about your cargo, and your choice of air or ocean shipping, FCL or LCL, door to door, port to door, port to port or door to port deliveries.

If you’re unsure about whether to go with air or sea shipping, air freight is usually reasonably priced—and always quicker—for goods weighing under 100kg. Above that weight and provided your business can afford to wait, ocean freight is invariably the most economical option.

Shipa Freight doesn’t quote for shipments weighing less than 35kg. You should approach parcel carriers or couriers if you intent to send such small consignments from Germany to China.

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