Are you looking for transportation and logistics services from China to India?
We offer a wide variety of services tailored to your needs.
Whether it’s shipping by air freight or via ocean shipping containers, our team will endeavor to bring you the best and most affordable transport solutions from China to India.
This dedicated India country guide will give you all the main details related to your shipment from China to India: time, rates, processes, duties and taxes…
Table of Contents
What are the Shipping Routes from China to India?
Door to Door shipping from China to India
With your authorization, we can pick up the goods from your factory to transport them to the seaport or airport.
Otherwise, the goods you wish to ship need to be sent to our warehouses in Shenzhen, Guangzhou…
Door-to-door quotes include the above as well as:
Customs clearance fees If customs requires a further inspection of your cargo, additional fees may be charged.
- Trucking fees
- Cargo insurance (this is required). Don’t ship your products without getting them covered!)
DDP air freight
- Shipping Type: LCL Shipping
- Shipping Time: 5–7 days
Export Declaration: Your factory is not the exporter to declare.
Destination: We can send to your business or private address, as well as Amazon FBA warehouses.
DDP sea shipping
- Shipping Type: LCL Shipping; check for FCL availability.
- Shipping Time: 17–25 days
Export Declaration: Your factory is not the declared exporter.
Destination: We can send to your business or private address, as well as Amazon FBA warehouses.
Sea Freight & Container Shipping From China To India
Transport by sea is one of the most popular options for shipping, and this is a key means for goods coming to India from China.
Ocean freight will be the best deal for you if :
- Your suppliers are located near a major Chinese port
- Your goods are bigger than 2 CBM
- You’re not in a hurry to receive them
We offer a variety of services, from full door-to-door to door-to-port and port-to-port.
With a door-to-door service, your goods will be in our hands from the factory or retailer in China all the way to your address in India.
Goods coming into China arrive at India’s premier ports. Here is a list of them.
Major Ports of the East Coast
It is the third-largest container port in India and the first on the east coast. It was opened in 1881 and is now ruled by the Chennai Port Trust and the Singaporean group PSA International. Its container traffic was 1,468,000 TEUs, and it handled 46.29 million metric tons of cargo in 2015.
It is the oldest port in India, having opened in 1870. It is operated by PSA International and the Kolkata Port Trust. In 2015, its container traffic was 563,000 TEUs. It’s the second-busiest port on the east coast.
Opened in 1933, it is now operated by the Emirati group DPW and the Visakhapatnam Port Trust. Located midway between Kolkata and Chennai, it is the third major east coast port, with a container traffic of 263,000 TEUs and 58 million tonnes of cargo in 2015.
Major ports on the West Coast
It is the biggest Indian port, and it opened after independence in the 1950s. In 2016, the port managed 106 million metric tons of cargo. Again, it is operated by PSA International and the Kandla Port Trust.
Also known as Nhava Sheva or JNPT, it is the second-biggest port in both India and the West Coast. It is operated by the Danish group AP Møller and the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust. Opened in 1989, it is one of the most recent Indian ports. It has the ambition to manage 10 million TEUs by the year 2021. Located in the state of Maharashtra, it handles the majority of the region’s cargo, while bulk cargo is handled by the neighboring port of Mumbai.
SINO : We are present in every major port and harbor of China, thanks to our great collaborators. Thanks to their great work, we’re honored to propose a full range of ocean freight services to India. SINO Shipping can program a full container (FCL) or less than a container (LCL) for 20 ft, 40 ft, and 40 ft HQ containers. If your goods require a controlled environment, we’re able to plan freight by reefer container, roro, or bulk cargo as well.
Special sea freight services
Reefer container from China to India
Some goods are constantly in need of a controlled environment. Reefer containers are constantly maintained at a specific temperature to allow for their excellent transport. Many categories of products, like chemicals, food, and others, are sent exclusively with this method. SINO Shipping is fully capable of booking a reefer container from any city in China to any destination in India.
Roro/Bulk/OOG from China to India
These ships are very well shaped for the transfer through an ocean of vehicles like trucks, buses, boats, or simply cars. This kind of vessel is composed of a retractable ramp on its back that enables vehicles to be driven directly inside the ship.
If you have large quantities of raw materials to transfer, bulk cargo is a good solution. This type of vessel has large cisterns that permit it to stock great quantities of liquid or solid raw products like corn, oil, cement, etc. without using containers.
OOG shipments, which stand for “out of gauge,” are shipments that are more voluminous than a container and that can’t be split to be placed in several containers. These items require particular care to be shifted. We can provide this type of solution too.
All these kinds of freight solutions can be asked of us. As all goods can’t fit the constraints of a container, we developed a very complete spectrum of freight solutions. From China to India, we’re fully proficient in the handling of bulk, roro, and OOG cargo.
Air Freight From China To India
India possesses a large number of international airports that cover the entire country. There are 35 in total, while in China there are at least 60 international airports. Numerous international cargo lines are linking the two countries with direct flights. We can mention China Cargo Airlines, which has branches at Chennai International Airport. Of course, other non-Asian airlines have flights arriving at India’s international airports from China.
We have developed a vast network of carriers that specialize in air cargo transportation, offering daily and weekly departures from China’s main airports to any air destination on the globe.
Air freight will be the most efficient solution if :
- Your goods are smaller than 2 CBM and 200 kg
- You’re in a hurry to receive/send the goods
Our SINO Shipping air freight service from China to India provides safe and reliable solutions for all your air transportation needs, including time-sensitive and high-value commodities.
Our shipping options include airport-to-airport, door-to-door, airport-to-door, and door-to-airport services, among others.
With our service, we’ll take care of each step of the journey, making sure that your goods arrive at their destination when you need them.
The normal transit time for air freight from China to India is around 3–7 days.
This can vary owing to seasonal demands and traffic in the freight market at certain times of the year. Our years of experience can bring expert knowledge to your logistical needs in this respect.
The charter service offers you peace of mind and bespoke services, as well as a long list of goods that are possible to ship. We can arrange this service for you and ship goods such as:
- Consumer goods
- High-value goods
- Sensitive cargo such as hazardous, fresh, or perishable goods
- Time-critical freight
- Medical supply & humanitarian relief aid
- Heavy load & oversized equipment
- Car, Aircraft and ships spare parts
When it comes to weight, we offer options from 10,000 lb (5000 kg) to 45,000 lb (22,000 kg), which can be transported in crates or boxes, on pallets, or in bulk.
Our part-charter and full-charter options range in weight from 10.000 lbs (5.000 kg) to 45.000 lbs (22.000 kg) and can be loaded on pallets, skids, crates, or simply in bulk.
What are the Shipping Costs from China to India (updated May 2023)
FCL Container freight rates from China to India (updated May 2023)
LCL Consolidation sea freight rates from China to India (updated May 2023)
Air freight rates from China to India (updated May 2023)
How long is shipping from China to India right now?
Ocean Sea, Air & Express transit times from China to India (updated May 2023)
*Express freight is always door to door
Rail freight transit times
This table here details regular transit times between the biggest Chinese and Indian cities:
Road freight transit times
This table here details regular transit times between the biggest Chinese and Indian cities:
*Road freight rates vary greatly depending on distance traveled. At least you will be charged around 2500 USD for the shortest distance, and it can go around 9000 USD if the journey covers the extremities of India and China.
What is the cheapest way of shipping from China to India?
The most affordable option to ship from China to India, regardless of the shipping method you choose, is through a reputed China freight forwarder like SINO Shipping.
We at SINO Shipping are able to pass along our high-volume shipping rates in addition to providing a best rate guarantee on all modes of transportation. Start now and get a shipping estimate from China.
How to ship container and import from China to India
Step 1: Check trade laws in China and India
Each country has its own specific laws and regulations when it comes to importing and exporting.
When you’re importing from China to India, this means being aware, or at the very least working with a logistics partner that is aware, of the regulations in both countries.
Staying informed is crucial to your business, as breaking the law could be a huge legal headache, not to mention potentially causing financial difficulties for your company.
When it comes to importing, having the right documents ready every time is of the utmost importance.
Step 2: Decide what you are importing
For each business, being aware of the market is crucial for success.
While you may find a commodity that you like, be sure to check that there is enough demand for it and that, in cases where there are other suppliers, you are serving a need they aren’t providing.
Step 3: Choose a viable shipping method
Depending on your volume and regularity of shipping, choosing the right method of transportation could be crucial for your business.
While obviously air freight is going to be more expensive, it also offers advantages in speed, which could mean that it is an economically viable option.
Step 4: Find a supplier
Locating and ordering from a supplier is, of course, a vital step.
When you start to regularly ship, you may start building a relationship with your supplier, one that can have mutually beneficial outcomes for both sides.
The ideal scenario is to receive high-quality goods while your supplier receives consistent business.
Chinese suppliers can be found via a variety of means.
For example, there are very famous websites that act as a portal for Chinese businesses, and you can find websites that offer business-to-business and business-to-client services. Another option may be to visit Chinese trade fairs.
If you’re looking
to expand your business beyond China, checking out India Sourcing Network for sourcing and import private label products from India for your brand.
While this takes a lot more planning, seeing products in person and getting to speak to their representatives can be well worth the time and money it takes to travel.
Your freight forwarding agents may also be a great source of information. Their jobs involve the logistical planning of goods and cargo, so it’s very likely they’ll have a lot of contacts already in the Chinese industry.
Feel free to get in contact with us and let us know your business, and we can do our best to find you a suitable partner.
Finally, specialist Chinese sourcing companies may be an option, as they provide a service based on sourcing what you need from China and save the hassle of going through long lists of suppliers.
As a company with a long history of freight logistics, we have experience in this field, so if you are looking for help with price negotiation or transportation logistics, then let us know and we’ll help you get the best price and arrangement for your business.
Step 5: Check and estimate your tax liability.
Each country has its own tax and customs regime, and if you’re importing from China to India,
India’s customs rates vary from 0 to 37.5 percent, with a typical duty rate of about 5.63 percent.
Make sure you know ahead of time what the fees will be, as this will affect your business plan.
Step 6: Define your incoterms
Incoterms refer to the internationally recognized rules governing global trade.
These regulations cover the various responsibilities that exist along the supply chain.
Such rules could be about who is responsible for monitoring shipments or making payments at certain stages in the process.
Make sure you’re familiar with them.
Step 7: Customs clearance from China to India
Customs clearance can be frustrating, but it’s a necessary part of doing business internationally.
Make sure you are aware of all the stages, including declaration, obtaining permits, warehousing (if needed), and exiting the goods.
Step 8: Hiring a freight forwarder
Transporting goods is a complex procedure, which is why businesses of all sizes choose to use freight forwarders to help them get their goods from A to B.
Experienced freight forwarders such as ourselves know exactly what it takes to ship goods from one country to another, and we can handle your goods from door-to-door, port-to-port, or anywhere in between.
Hiring a freight forwarder to handle the bureaucracy and logistics of international trade can be a very economical decision. Get in contact with us today, and we’ll arrange a quote for you.
Do I have to pay customs duties for a package sent from China to India?
Depending on the type of product you are importing, you may be required to pay import tax on your purchases. There is no explicit trade agreement between India and China. Trade therefore takes place under non-preferential WTO (World Trade Organization) conditions.
Let’s go over the actions you must take to get ready to import from China:
- Verify that importing your products from China to India is not prohibited or requires an import permit.
- Check to see if the company shipping the items from China is authorized to export them.
- Identify the appropriate commodity code for your products to see whether import tax is required.
Importers may find it difficult to navigate the waters of customs documentation while also arranging for their goods to be transported in the most cost-effective and time-efficient manner possible.
That’s why it makes financial sense to utilize the services of a freight forwarder, who will not only take care of the details but also bring their wealth of knowledge and contacts to negotiate the best deals for your transportation needs.
If you are transporting goods from China to India, selecting the right freight forwarder can make or break your business.
You’ll save not only money but time as well, which can be just as important to businesses.
We make it our business to be familiar with the ins and outs and the fine print of importing laws and regulations.
Of course, each country has different regulations and expected standards when it comes to importing.
By using a freight forwarding service, you save yourself the hassle of having to learn all the different contexts and required documentation.
That’s our job, and we’ll be able to make sure your goods’ journey is as smooth as possible while you can devote your time to better serving your bottom line elsewhere.
Customs clearance in India
How to be exempted of duties and taxes
Because there aren’t any Free Trade Agreements between the two countries, the possibility of being exempt from taxes is very small. Complementary to this, India has one of the most difficult customs clearance processes and laws in the world. If you combine these two factors, it explains why most Indian importers are asking freight forwarders to handle the customs procedures. With our great experience between the two countries, we can take care of all this procedure and its inherent paperwork. Just let us know.
The Certificate of Origin (CO)
The CO is proof of the place where your goods were produced. As its name implies, it certifies the origin of your items and is recognized by all customs officials in all countries. Generally, the CO must be delivered by the government or a notary public.
The Bill of Entry (BOE)
The Bill of Entry should not be mixed with the Bill of Lading.
It’s one of the most important documents for import. The Bill of Entry must be signed by the importer and sent to the corresponding customs office within 30 days after the arrival of the items in India. The BOE is attesting to the Reserve Bank and Indian Customs’ rule of “total outward remittance of country.”
The Bill of Lading (BL) or Airway Bill
The Bill of Lading (different from the Bill of Entry) is a major document required for imports in every country. As the CO attests to where your goods are coming from, the BL attests to the cargo’s information, the payment transfer from the importer to the freight forwarder, and the issuance of the LC (Letter of Credit). The Bill of Lading is inherent to sea freight, which is why the airway bill comes for air freight.
Here is a detailed example of what a BL contains:
1 = Shipper
2 = Consignee
3 = Notify party
4 = Vessel No.
5 = Port of loading / discharge
6 = Place of receipt / delivery
7 = Containers No.
8 = Goods description
9 = Net weight
10 = Dimensions / volume
Product test reports
Customs officers have to determine the quality of the products that you import. In order to achieve this objective, they might withdraw samples of your products and send them to a sworn laboratory. The complete clearance can only be finished after receiving the official results. An already-made test report will probably save you and the customs officials time.
Product description, catalog…
Documents or literature detailing the technical aspects and functions of the goods might be demanded by customs to clear special imports. It will help customs officers find out the exact value of your goods if they are uncommon.
GATT & DGFT Declarations
Every importer in India needs to fill out a General Agreement on Tariff and Trade declaration (GATT) and a Directorate General of Foreign Trade declaration (DGFT).
Labels requirements for Chinese products
Labels can be written in English or Hindi. Here are the information that must be available on the label
- Product name and description
- Net weight
- Date of production
- Importer’s address
- Maximum selling price, taxes included
- Batch ID
- MM/YYYY of the import
- MADE IN CHINA
- Dimensions (optional)
- Expiry date and net weight (for food only)
BIS, Indian Standards (IS) and ISI Mark
The BIS is the state agency in charge of the establishment of security and quality norms and standards in India. It produced a huge number of norms that are applicable to a lot of items that are produced or imported in India.
If you’re willing to import these items below, you must ensure yourself that they agree with one of the norms set by the BIS before ordering them from your supplier:
- Household electrical goods
- Food & agricultural products
- Diesel engines
- Oil pressure stoves
- Automobiles accessories
- Steel cylinders, valves and regulators
- Medical equipment
- Steel products
The Indian Standard is a set of rules, norms, and standards that apply to goods, whether they are of Indian or foreign origin. They are created by the BIS. Approximately 20,000 people are currently applying for IS. Although it’s better if the goods you’re importing are compatible with the existing IS, it’s not an obligation in order to import them on Indian territory, as some IS aren’t compulsory.
SINO Info: You can find the IS that are required for your items on this page: BIS..
If your goods meet Indian Standards, your supplier will be able to stamp them with the ISI mark. As most of the Chinese suppliers are not used to it, you will have to provide them with the ISI mark so they can print it. It’s comparable to the CE-mark system that is ruling in the European Economic Area.
SINO Remark : If your goods are not IS compliant, even if it’s not mandatory, don’t ask your supplier to mark them with the ISI symbol. It will only cause trouble.
Your responsibility towards the BIS
For goods produced in India, it’s the manufacturer that is responsible for the compliance of his products with the IS. For goods produced overseas, it’s the importer that is liable for the IS compliance of the goods he is importing.
If your goods are IS required, we recommend that you look for Chinese suppliers who are already used to producing items that meet the IS, even if they are few. Because if they are not, the steps to obtain this certification are numerous, and it can take a lot of time, as you’re the person responsible for it, without guaranteeing results.
Here is a to-do list for you to supervise IS matching item production:
- Find a Chinese manufacturer or supplier that is selling CE or FCC-marked products. This category of supplier is more willing to accept and be able to manage an the product development process.
- Order samples of the goods you want to import. Send the samples to a BIS accredited laboratory.
- The laboratory will give you the results. If it’s positive, your supplier can put the ISI mark on the products. If it’s negative, they will give you further explanations. After, it’s on your will to try again or to give up.
- Despite positive results, the BIS can request further tests and factory inspection by their representatives.
- If all is ok after it, you can start your import process.
Of course, all of this will be at your expense.
Most of the countries are working with the Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) to identify products, but India is one of the few countries that is not using exactly this system.
Here is a picture detailing the information provided by a HS code
SINO Info : If you don’t know the HS code of your products, you can search for it with keywords, or a picture if you have one on this website: FIND HS.
You now know which HS code corresponds to your goods. It will help you determine what duties and taxes you will pay using this official Indian customs tool.
First, enter the access code shown on the first page. Select “Trade Guide on Imports” on the next page.
On the following page, if you are searching tariffs applying to pineapples produced in China, type “pineapple” and select China as the country of origin. Select the corresponding HS Code “080430” on the next page, and you will land on the final page, detailing the tariff rates that are applying.
SINO Info : Now that you know how numerous the required documents can be, you still have the possibility of asking one of our SINO Customs Experts to handle it entirely for you.
Customs contact in China
Official name: General Administration of Customs of China
Official Website: Chinese Customs
Customs contact in India
Official name: Central Board of Excise
Customs Official Website: Indian Customs Website
Trade relations between China and India
The BRICS, motor of the cooperation between the two countries
Because of their geographical proximity, India and China have always had extensive exchanges and trade. Their closeness is also the cause of several litigations between both countries. In our current times, conflicts exist over the administration of Arunachal Pradesh and the Aksai Chin regions in northern India and eastern China. We can say that they are as much willing to cooperate, than feeling concurrent to each other. Fortunately, thanks to the yearly BRICS forum, they are soothing their relations for better common development.
India and China have the greatest economies and populations in the world, and are constantly developing, particularly through international trades.
Hong Kong and China are the third-largest trading partners of India in terms of exports, with almost 9 % of the Indian exported goods going there. China is India’s first import partner, with 17 % of the goods imported to India coming from China. On the other hand, India isn’t a major partner for China, as only 0.74 % of the imported goods into China are coming from India. India is the 7th export partner of China, with 2.78 % of the goods exported from China going to India.
As said before, India and China don’t have any Free Trade Agreements in common. Like all emerging countries, duties and taxes on importations in India are heavy, around 12 % on average. So you must be ready to pay duties ranging from 5 % to 30 % on the Chinese goods you want to import.
To sum up, India and China have been trading and exchanging greatly through modern and ancient history. India is investing massively in its infrastructure to catch up on its delay in this domain. Sea freight remains the key transfer method between the two countries, while air, rail, and road freight have to be considered only for special purposes.
The customs process in India is one of the heaviest in the world for all types of goods and countries of origin. Tariff barriers in India are also quite elevated. But it’s common for an emerging country.
More than 10 years of expertise in Asia enable us to deliver tailor-made freight solutions at highly competitive prices. Do not hesitate to contact our dedicated staff for more information about your transfer; we’re always happy to serve and spread knowledge!
SINO Shipping’s Freight Storage and Warehousing services
We offer a warehousing service for all your logistical needs.
When transporting goods, you might want to temporarily store them in a warehouse, especially if you are sourcing your cargo from many different outlets.
Warehousing means you can collect and consolidate your goods, which can save you money in the long run, especially if it means you can collect enough to make a full container economically viable.
Our facilities provide all the standard services when it comes to warehouse logistics, such as loading, unloading, crating, palletizing, and temporary storage.
Does Alibaba Ship to India?
Alibaba offers shipping to India. Yes. In actuality, a large number of Alibaba suppliers have prior experience shipping to India. You have the option of shipping freight by air or by sea.
However, using a specialized China freight forwarder like Sino Shipping will allow you to avoid being ripped off with hidden costs while also paying less for your freight with better rates. Logistics is not the job of your suppliers. Never forget that.
What items cannot be sent to India?
Every country has its own list of items that are prohibited. India is no exception, and we list below some of the key items that are prohibited.
It’s important to know this, as being aware of the law when it comes to importing is vital to making your business a success. If in any doubt at all, then make sure you contact your freight forwarder, who will be able to properly assess whether the goods you want to import are feasible and legal.
Failure to do so could result in a nasty surprise when it comes to customs, and as the importer, you’ll be responsible. It’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to importing, so get in contact with us.
Remark SINO : If you have one of the following items, you should check directly with our SINO Experts. Some of those items are restricted or even totally prohibited; it is important to anticipate such shipment to avoid any problem.
SINO Shipping – Freight Forwarder China to India
Who we are
SINO Shipping by FS International has become one of the most trusted names in global logistics and transportation in its region and the world.
When we start
SINO Shipping by FS International was established in Hong Kong in September 1989.
What we do
SINO Shipping provides a full range of logistics and transportation services with particular emphasis on efficiency and reliability at a competitive rate and, of course, the assurance of personal service. Our tactical services include import/export freight-forwarding, ocean and air transportation, overland transportation, custom brokerage and regulatory compliance, project cargo services, warehousing and distribution, supply chain management and information management.
Where we are
Headquartered in Hong Kong, the company has branch offices in major cities in the Far East. Together with our agents in over 50 countries worldwide, we are able to extend our logistics, know-how, and experience in serving our clients.
How we do it
Through recognition of consolidated strengths to benefit our global client, SINO Shipping by FS International, the company founded, together with its long-time business partners, an international network, namely the Europe-Asia Alliance (EAA), back in 2007. Over the years, EAA has grown to a medium-sized freight forwarding network with remarkable success due to its binding rule of exclusivity, which is the key to making ourselves distinctive from the other networks.
Why we do it
SINO Shipping’s business philosophy focuses on the principles of honesty, integrity, and complete dedication to our clients. Our operations and management staff adhere to these principles with much enthusiasm and professionalism. In addition to providing superb customer service to our clients, we commit ourselves to knowing what matters most to them by listening, learning, comprehending, and delivering tailored solutions. Cross-functional teams of professionals from every unit in our organization work with every one of our clients closely, continuously seeking opportunities for process improvement and savings. Ready to deliver with attention to every detail on every shipment, every time, is our promise.
Our intense customer focus is well complimented by a strong, mature global network of agents that enable us to meet our clients’ most complicated shipping challenges, delivering even greater bottom-line value to their supply chain.
At SINO Shipping, we’ve been helping customers grow for years by never losing sight of two basic values: We care. And we keep our promises.
Recurrent questions regarding the shipping from China to India
What is the shipping cost from China to India?
LCL: 20 USD/cbm FCL: 700 USD per 20′ and 1000 USD per 40′
What are the best freight options to send goods from China to India?
There are four options: by sea, air, road, or railway. It depends on how big the volume and weight are, and then you will decide which shipping methods are more appropriate. You must calculate the ration time/cost
How much tax will I pay for importing goods from China to India?
All imported goods are subject to the Goods & Services Tax (GST), which is assessed at a rate of 10% of the item’s value. Integrated GST, also known as IGST, is an additional tax that is added to the value of imported goods along with any applicable customs duties.
Do customs open every package?
No, they don’t immediately open your package without any reason… They will only instantly check what’s inside your package if: Your package was damaged when it reached the Customs office or desk. The damages can include broken seals, plastic, or any cover on your package.
How do I avoid customs charges?
When you make a shipping request, you’ll have to declare the value of your shipment. The value you enter on your request form is the value that will be declared at customs, so it is important that you declare it accurately. If you declare too high a value, you may be assessed more taxes than you want to pay! If you declare too low a value, your declared value may be considered unreasonable and adjusted upward.
How can I reduce my shipping costs?
-Negotiate with multiple carriers -Get suppliers to use your shipping account number -Use packaging provided by your carrier -Consider a regional carrier -Use online shipping -Invest in prepaid shipping -Buy insurance from a third party -Factor in all shipping fees before billing customers -Consider hybrid services -Ask about association discounts.