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Modes of Transportation

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For small domestic shipments up to 150 pounds, United Parcel Service (UPS) is generally the most appropriate and least expensive form of transportation. However, since UPS has certain limitations, other forms of transportation must be used when weight, size, distance or time elements dictate. The carriers listed below offer WHOI generous discounts for their services and, except for UPS, will accept freight on a collect basis from WHOI personnel working in the field. While there are other carriers that we use, this list will provide a general guide for seeking transportation services in unfamiliar places.

Transportation Costs
Because there are so many shipping variables, the Shipping Department does not maintain a complete list of rates for our various carries. We will be glad to furnish rate estimates for individual shipments upon request. We maintain a sizeable list of transportation vendors in addition to those shown above. This is to ensure that we have plenty of options to better negotiate price and service for researchers. Of course, we will do everything possible to honor specific routing instructions from our shippers.

While domestic rates can often be figured within a short period of time, international container rates may take some time to work up. WHOI's often remote destinations may involve more than one steamship line, and rate information may be delayed because of time zone differences and language barriers. In most cases the commodity has not previously been shipped from Woods Hole to a given destination; therefore, the Shipping Department must negotiate the steamship line rates well in advance of your departure. This should be done two months before you plan to leave WHOI.

When trying to estimate your own freight charges it is important to remember that shipments are rated based on their own weight (actual weight), or on their volume (dimensional weight) ,whichever produces the higher charges. Dimensional weight is computed by multiplying length X width X height and dividing by the dimensional factor – 166 if domestic, 194 if international. This rating process is used by all air carriers and many trucking companies as well.

Please complete the on-line Shipping Request with as much detailed information as possible. An accurate description of your item, including any hazardous material is essential. A complete delivery address, with phone numbers, is needed. A post office box cannot be used for a delivery address. Complete and accurate information allows the Shipping Department to route your shipment in the most cost effective manner without jeopardizing service or the departure of a scheduled cruise.

Last updated: March 21, 2018

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