A Complete Guide to Shipping From China to the USA

Do you need help in importing Chinese products to the USA? Let this guide to shipping from China to USA assist you in finding the most efficient way to send your goods!

cargo ship from China to USA filled with containers
Source: Pinterest

According to the USTR, China is the largest trading partner of the United States when it comes to goods. The total trade between the two countries amounted to $559.2 billion in 2020 alone. This is not surprising since China is known as the world’s factory.

However, shipping products to the United States is a complicated process that is frowned upon by many businesses. That is why we’ve made this guide in order to make shipping your products to the US as hassle-free as possible.

P.S.  Are you looking for a reliable freight forwarder from China to USA Amazon? Check out FBABEE! We are an experienced Amazon FBA freight forwarder that offers affordable services to send your goods faster and safer!

Ways to Save Time and Money Shipping from China to the USA

how to ship from China to USA saving time and money
Source: Pinterest

Know the Shipping Restrictions in the US

Before you ship your products to the US, make sure that you are not sending restricted and prohibited items. Or else, the customs might hold your shipment or return it to the shipper.

Get To Know China’s Holidays

It is important that you know about the holidays in China and the USA because delays during peak times cannot be avoided. Shipping rates are also higher when you ship during holidays.

Know the Cost of Shipping From China to USA

Familiarize yourself with the costs you need to deal with to make sure that your expenses will match your budget. Shipping rates from China to USA will depend on the following factors:

  • Airport transfer fees
  • Customs processing fees
  • Transportation fees
  • Cargo insurance
  • Seasonal factors
  • Fuel costs
  • The type of goods you are sending

Get Ready for Shipment Documents

To avoid delays in your shipments, make sure to organize all important paperwork and documents such as the following:

  • Packing List
  • Commercial Invoice
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Bill of Lading
  • ISF (International Security Filing)

For more information, check out the China Customs and the US Customs pages.

Know the Best Way to Ship from China to the United States

Choosing the best way makes sure that your shipment is processed efficiently. When choosing the most ideal method, consider the following:

  • Your timing requirements
  • Your load’s weight and dimensions
  • The destination of your shipment

Partner With a Logistics Company

You can partner with shipping agents or freight forwarders to manage your shipments for you. They can help you deal with the complexities of the shipping process including customs clearance. Moreover, when choosing a freight forwarder for your needs, consider the following factors:

  • Experience
  • Certifications
  • Services
  • Shipping Rates

Also Read: Amazon Freight Forwarders in the USA

How to Ship from China to the US

You can ship from China to the United States through the following modes of transportation which we will discuss one by one later:

  • Air freight shipping
  • Sea freight shipping
  • Express shipping

Air Freight from China to the US

cargo planes ready to ship from China to USA
Source: Pinterest

Air Freight Cost From China to USA

Air freight rates from China to USA can range from $4-$8 per kilo but better ask your logistics company for the exact rates.

How Long Does It Take to Ship Cargo by Air From China to the US?

This may vary depending on the following factors:

  • Consolidation before departure
  • Customs procedures
  • Deconsolidation at the airport of arrival
  • Whether it is a direct or indirect flight

Also, port-to-port shipping can take between 1-5 days while door-to-door shipping can range from 4-15 days. Below are the average transit times from specific air shipping routes:

  • From Xiamen to:
    • Atlanta or New York: 4 days
    • Houston or Detroit: 7 days
    • Los Angeles: 8 days
  • From Wuhan to:
    • New York: 8 days
  • From Qingdao to:
    • Chicago, New York, or Houston: 8 days
    • Los Angeles or Seattle: 5 days
  • From Shenzhen to:
    • Dallas, Atlanta, or Miami: 6 days
    • Los Angeles or Chicago: 5 days
    • Denver: 7 days
    • Houston: 2 days
  • From Shanghai to:
    • Atlanta: 3 days
    • Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, or Miami: 5 days
    • Houston, Sacramento, or Detroit: 6 days
  • From Shanghai to:
    • Cincinnati, Dallas, or Boston: 7 days
  • From Beijing to:
    • Atlanta, Boston, or New York: 6 days
  • From Beijing to:
    • Cincinnati or Chicago: 4 days
    • San Francisco, Houston, or Dallas: 7 days
    • Los Angeles: 5 days
  • From Guangzhou to:
    • Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, or New York: 5 days
    • Miami: 6 days
  • From Zhengzhou to Los Angeles: 5 days
  • From Chengdu to Los Angeles: 12 days

Recommended Air Freight Companies

Check out our list of the best China air freight companies for this.

Why and When to Choose Air Shipping

  • Ideal for valuable, delicate, fragile, and perishable goods of two to three pallets
  • For goods that you need to ship ASAP to the US

Also Read: Shipping Companies From China to USA

Ocean Freight From China to the US

cargo truck loaded with container shipping from China to USA
Source: Pinterest

Sea Shipping Options

Full Container Load (FCL) – This is for loads that fill an entire shipping container. Using this option can help you save a considerable amount of money when shipping in bulk compared to LCL.

Less than Container Load (LCL) – This is used for smaller consignments where your goods will be sent with shipments from other shippers.

Sea Freight Cost From China to USA

Ocean freight rates from China to USA can range from $3,000-$3,900 per container. 

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

The shipping time will depend on various factors such as the route chosen and whether you choose FCL or LCL. Below are the estimated sea shipping times:

  • FCL
    • Door-to-Door: 19-47 days
    • Port-to-Port: 14-42 days
  • LCL
    • Door-to-Door: 22-50 days
    • Port-to-Port: 14-42 days

In addition, the transit time from China to the East Coast can take more than 25 days and over 15 days to the West Coast. Below are average transit times using specific ocean shipping routes from China to the United States:

  • From Guangzhou to:
    • Miami: 38 days (LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 26 days (LCL)
  • From Dalian to:
    • Los Angeles: 26 days (LCL)
  • From Huangpu to:
    • New York: 40 days (FCL and LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 35 days (LCL)
    • Charleston or Miami: 40 days (LCL)
  • From Jiangmen to:
    • Charleston: 42 days (LCL)
    • Miami: 44 days (LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 27 days (LCL)
  • From Ningbo to:
    • Chicago: 29 days (FCL), 22 days (LCL)
    • Houston: 36 days (FCL), 34 days (LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 13 days (FCL), 17 days (LCL)
    • New York: 35 days (FCL), 23 days (LCL)
    • Seattle: 23 days (FCL), 17 days (LCL)
    • Oakland, Baltimore, Long Beach, Savannah, or Norfolk: 36 days (FCL)
  • From Shanghai to:
    • Atlanta: 34 days (FCL), 29 days (LCL)
    • Boston: 37 days (FCL), 35 days (LCL)
    • Charleston: 37 days (FCL), 34 days (LCL)
    • Chicago: 37 days (FCL), 28 days (LCL)
    • Houston: 39 days (FCL), 33 days (LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 22 days (FCL and LCL)
    • Miami: 38 days (FCL), 46 days (LCL)
    • New York: 38 days (FCL), 37 days (LCL)
    • Seattle: 24 days (LCL)
    • Tacoma: 36 days (FCL)
    • Long Beach: 25 days (FCL)
    • Savannah: 29 days (FCL)
    • Baltimore: 36 days (FCL)
  • From Shenzhen to:
    • San Francisco: 25 days (LCL)
    • Miami: 44 days (LCL)
    • Chicago: 30 days (LCL)
    • Charleston: 40 days (LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 19 days (FCL), 23 days (LCL)
    • New York: 36 days (FCL), 38 days (LCL)
  • From Tianjin to:
    • Miami: 42 days (LCL)
    • Houston: 35 days (LCL)
    • Seattle: 36 days (FCL), 35 days (LCL)
  • From Qingdao to:
    • Atlanta: 35 days (FCL), 39 days (LCL)
    • Chicago: 24 days (FCL), 25 days (LCL)
    • Houston: 36 days (FCL), 37 days (LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 24 days (LCL)
    • New York: 36 days (FCL), 40 days (LCL)
    • Oakland: 24 days (FCL)
    • Long Beach: 19 days (FCL)
    • Charleston: 35 days (FCL)
    • Seattle: 20 days (LCL)
  • From Xiamen to:
    • New York: 34 days (LCL)
    • Los Angeles: 20 days (LCL)
    • Charleston, Houston, Savannah, or Oakland: 36 days (FCL)
  • From Fuzhou to:
    • Los Angeles: 20 days (FCL)
    • Houston: 23 days (FCL)
  • From Shekou to:
    • New York: 36 days (FCL)
    • Los Angeles: 23 days (FCL)
  • From Lianyungang to:
    • Savannah, Oakland, or Boston: 36 days (FCL)

Recommended Logistic Brands

Check out our list of China ocean shipping agencies here.

Why and When to Choose Ocean Shipping

  • Offers the cheapest shipping from China to USA
  • It is the most practical option to transport your goods if they can survive the long transit time

Also Read: Best Freight Forwarder From China to USA

Express Shipping From China to USA

FedEx Freight Cargo Airline ship from China to USA
Source: Pinterest

Express Shipping From China to USA Price

Some courier companies can offer rates between $5-$9 per kilogram.

China to US Shipping Time for Express Shipping

Courier shipping takes 1-5 days.

Recommended Courier Service Companies

You can check out our list of the top China courier companies that can help you ship your products fast to the US.

Why and When to Choose Express Shipping

  • The fastest way to deliver product samples as well as valuable and perishable items
  • For door-to-door deliveries

Also Read: Shipping Agents China to USA

Ocean and Air Cargo Routes When Shipping From China to the USA

cargo truck with container
Source: Pinterest

Below are the major ports and airports of origin and arrival in both countries that can be used when shipping your products:

Cargo Ports of Origin in China

  • Shanghai
  • Dalian
  • Ningbo-Zhoushan
  • Qingdao
  • Xiamen
  • Shenzhen (Chiwan, Shekou, Yantian)
  • Qinzhou
  • Shantou
  • Fuzhou
  • Lianyungang
  • Zhongshan
  • Zhuhai
  • Tianjin
  • Guangzhou (Huangpu, Nansha)

You can read about our lists of freight forwarders in China below:

Cargo Ports of Arrival in the US

  • Los Angeles
  • Long Beach
  • Savannah
  • Seattle
  • Miami
  • New York
  • Houston
  • Oakland
  • San Francisco
  • New Orleans
  • Boston
  • Charleston
  • Norfolk
  • Baltimore
  • Atlanta
  • Tacoma
  • Mobile
  • Port Everglades

Airport Routes From China to the US

  • From Shanghai Pudong to:
    • Anchorage
    • Atlanta
    • Memphis
    • Chicago
    • Cincinnati
    • Los Angeles
    • San Francisco
    • Dallas
    • Detroit
    • New York
    • Seattle
    • Newark
    • Washington DC
    • Oakland
  • From Beijing to:
    • Anchorage
    • Atlanta
    • Los Angeles
    • Chicago
    • San Jose
    • New York
    • Houston
    • Newark
    • Dallas
    • Washington DC
    • Detroit
    • Seattle
    • San Francisco
    • Las Vegas
  • From Guangzhou to:
    • Anchorage
    • Chicago
    • New York
    • Los Angeles
    • San Francisco
  • From Qingdao to:
    • San Francisco
    • Los Angeles
  • From Wuhan to:
    • San Francisco
    • Los Angeles


Hopefully, our guide has been helpful to you. If you need any help in shipping Chinese products to the Amazon warehouse, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. For more resources you can read, refer to our other blogs about shipping from China to other American countries below:

  • A Complete Guide to Shipping From China to Canada
  • A Complete Guide to Shipping From China to Mexico

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