International Freight Forwarder and Customs Broker Based in China

🥇Shipping from China to South Africa | Sea & Air Freight [2022]

If you’re starting a business importing from China to Africa, or if you already import but want to know more to improve your business, then this guide will give you all the information you need. We’ll tell you how to ship goods from China to South Africa and advise you on the different elements you need to consider in order to make your shipping as economical as possible.


We have deep links with ports across China, such as Guangzhou, Shanghai or wherever you’re shipping from. Our networks with both sea and airports means we can provide the best possible service when it comes to price and transit priority.

China and South Africa are both members of the BRICS, an acronym used to describe the organisation of five major emerging world economies:


Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. This means the bilateral relationship between China and South Africa is fairly stable and there is potential for mutual benefit.


China has become famous for its production capabilities and South Africa is Africa’s emerging economic powerhouse. Trade between the two countries, especially exporting goods from China into South Africa, is set to be an important mechanism for economic growth between the two nations.

Table of Contents

Finding a Reliable Freight Forwarder


Freight forwarding companies have become essential parts of international trade logistics. Whether you are importing goods by land, sea or air, hiring a reliable freight forwarder means you’ll be able to sleep soundly as your goods make their way to your address.


Freight forwarders handle the logistics of international trade between two parties, and generally offer a service that makes sure your goods get from the factory/retailer to the port of deparature and from the port of arrival to your address.


While that sounds straightforward, keep in my mind there are many stops along the way where your goods will need to be loaded and unloaded as well as passing through customs. Freight forwarders have years of experience in this realm and are equipped with the knowledge and skills to transport your goods smoothly. 

china south africa trade relationship

Sino Shipping: Your best freight forwarder from China to South Africa


Sino Shipping has been operating in international trade for many years and thus we not only offer you a professional service for your cargo, but our experience means we can utilise our networks and knowledge to get you the best deals and priority transit.


Having a broad network of agents in China also means we have the business, technical and cultural knowledge to make your importing business run smoothly. From producers, to warehouses, to ports and customs, we know the details that can give your business the edge.


Remember, our success as a freight forwarder depends on your success as an importing business, so we always strive to provide the best possible service for the best possible price and delivery time-frame for your company.


Pickup and delivery:


No matter where your goods in China are being produced or sold, we’ll pick them up. Our agents can collect from the factory or retail outlet that you require and transport them to the nearest or most suitable port in China without fuss.


Custom clearance (one-day clearance):


Customs can be hassle, especially when the language is unfamiliar. We will clear your goods with Chinese customs and we aim to do within 24 hours of arrival at the customs department. Time is money and we know you want to get your goods as soon as possible.


Warehousing & Distribution:


If you’re importing many different goods, then it may make economical sense to consolidate them together to transport, rather than shipping them separately. In these cases, we offer a warehousing service . This services ensure that your goods are stored safely and securely while they await for more goods to be consolidated with.


Cargo insurance:


It’s unlikely that your goods will be damaged or lost, but insurance means you are better safe than sorry. We can help insure your goods with our services.


Loading supervision:


As your goods are being loaded onto the ship, or airplane, we’ll supervise the process and make sure that your cargo is handled with the utmost professionalism and care. If you have any items or cargo that requires specialised handling, we’ll also ensure that steps are taken to load these correctly and diligently.

goods from china to south africa

How to import goods into South Africa?


Let’s take a look at the steps to take when you’re starting a import business.


Product Research


All successful businesses, no matter where they are in the world, need to be aware of the market they are selling in. If you’re looking to sell your goods then you need to know what you’re selling. Furthermore, you need to be aware of the level of demand.


You may have found a product that you like, but is it sustainable as a business, and are there enough people who want it? Market research also helps you to understand the demographics of who the buyers are for certain products; when you start an importing business you need to be sure that you can connect to those populations. You also need to consider the variations and modes of the goods you are importing.


If you’re importing bicycles for instance, then you need to consider that bicycles come in many different ranges, brand names and qualities. By doing sufficient market research, you’ll be able to properly assess which type of the chosen good you want to import. This will also help you choose the factory/retailer in China that can best serve your needs too.


You’ll also need to devise a strategy to sell the product in a time that makes sense for your overheads. You don’t want to import a product that sells too slowly.


Sourcing products in China:


Once you’ve decided on the type of product you want to import, the next step is to locate the supplier of your goods in China.


This can be an exciting process as you’ll be able to explore what’s on offer.


When you’re looking, keep in mind prices and what you need to buy in order to make a profit in South Africa. Take into account both the sales price and the estimated price of shipping. Remember, in general, heavier things cost more to ship.


Keep in mind too that even when you’ve found the right supplier for you, you’ll need to make sure they can supply the goods you need in sufficient quantities. It’s not good having a supplier if they can keep up with your demand.


You may also want to consult with your logistics company. Many of these companies have a deep network of contacts and they may be able to point you in the right direction or even introduce you to trusted suppliers they’ve worked with before.


You can also check some of the most popular online portals for goods from China such as Canton Fair, Alibaba, Hongkong Fair,


When you talk to suppliers, you’ll need to keep a checklist of all the things that can affect the final price: The price per unit, the factory of origin, relevant customs fees, transportation and logistics costs. You may also want to ask if there are any discounts available too.


When you’re making a sales contract you’ll need to get certain pieces of information from the factory such as name and address of the manufacturer, Seller’s name and address, business license number, and product specification.


As well as online sourcing, trade fairs can be a very useful way to source products. The obvious advantage to trade fairs is that you get to see the products close up and in-person. This allows you to get your hands on the goods you will be selling and assess them for quality.


Of course you could do the same by requesting a sample to be sent to you, but trade fairs also bring the advantage of in-person interaction and the potential to make better personal connections with suppliers. You may even be able to use your experience at the trade fair to visit the factory where the goods are made.


Trade fairs of course take a bit more planning, as they’ll generally involve a trip to China, but can pay off in the long run when sourcing products. Many industries host their own specific trade fairs or you can find larger general events with each industry assigned an area. While the past few years have been slow due to global events, things are picking up again.

What products does South Africa import from China?


There are a wide variety of products that are imported from China to South Africa and this is a trade worth tens of billions of dollars annually. Some of the most popular goods that are imported are Clothes and apparel, electronics for both consumers and industry, foods such as rice, fish, sugar, iron and steel machinery, vehicles and vehicle parts, mobile phones, solar panels, plastic items, and furniture.


Ali express South Africa:


Aliexpress is a retail site from the same company as Alibaba. This site is more aimed towards consumers, but businesses can still use it to order specific goods and you may be able to strike up a relationship with the retailers on the site to better serve your business needs. By browsing Aliexpress, you’ll be able to see what kind of goods are being produced in China, whether it’s electronics, jewellery, accessories, toys, clothing, etc. Aliexpress usually delivers straight to your door via courier service, in around two weeks to a month, so you don’t need to worry about logistics. This is a good site to get samples of potential goods for your market.


South African custom regulations:


When you’ve decided on the product you want to import, you’ll need to consider the importation process relevant to South Africa. There are many steps that goods have to go through when being imported from another country. Import regulations are the most important as you’ll want to know whether your goods can be imported or not. All countries have laws that prohibit certain things from being imported. While some restricted items are obvious, such as weapons and narcotics, others vary from country to country and can include surprising things that you wouldn’t always expect to be prohibited. So to prevent any unnecessary shocks, make sure your goods can be imported legally.


Import license in South Africa:


When you’re importing goods as a business, you will need an import license of permit before you import into South Africa. Import licenses are especially essential if you are importing second hand goods, waste materials, or other controlled goods.


To apply for an import permit, register at the South African Revenue Services (SARS) and following this, the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) will be able to issue you your permit. You can download the form for this at the ITAC website.

Why do you need an import permit?


When you’re importing, understand that different types of goods have different types of rules. The import permit is important when you’re importing certain types of goods, like the one we mentioned above. This helps the government to regulate the import of certain goods that, if left unchecked could be damaging to society or environment of South Africa. Import permits also mean that officials can check on the quality of goods being imported.


If you’re unsure about whether the goods you want to import need an import permit, then please get in contact with us and we’ll be able to advise you on this. You can also check the ITAC website for more details.


Also be aware that when it comes to certain goods such as foodstuffs, fruits, vegetables, frozen or canned meat, live animals, including birds, etc. There may be additional regulations concerning their import. Make sure to consult thoroughly with ITAC and other official bodies if you are planning to import these goods.

What are the costs and time period for getting an import permit?


After application the average turnaround for receiving your permit is around five working days. There are no associated fees, but when you are importing you will need to pay customs duty.

Import duties in South Africa


Items up to the value of ZAR500 are exempt from import duty and taxes. For items above this value, it will depend on the category of good. Some goods will be exempt from any duty or taxes, while other goods may be subject to an average duty of 12%.


When calculating Import duties from China to South Africa, the total landing cost of your goods will be made up of three main variables: The cost of the goods, the freight charges and the import duty and customs clearance. Thus, when you’re making your business plan, these are the charges to take into account to assess whether you have a feasible business strategy.

Shipping agents from China to South Africa


Shipping agents, or freight forwarders help you get your goods from A to B. They are motivated to help your business succeed as their own continued business depends on your sustainability. There are hundreds of shipping agents/freight forwarders available for you to choose.


Of course we would recommend Sino Shipping, as we truly believe that our years of experience in the field of international shipping and our expert team of agents can bring you the best possible service with regards to cost and time. Whichever agent you choose, make sure that you agree on a comprehensive and complete list of all costs associated with shipping before you enter into business with them.

China to South Africa shipping


With billions of dollars of annual trade between China and South Africa, it’s unsurprising that there are busy shipping lanes spanning the globe.


Because of South Africa’s position on the tip of the African continent, ships from China may take the Pacific or Indian route, though the Indian Ocean route is generally the most popular for this voyage. Ships arriving in South Africa usually dock at the ports of Cape Town,

How long does ocean shipping between China and South Africa take?


Below is a table of the transit times between China and South Africa. Keep in mind that sea freight times are generally estimates and depending on the time of the year, how busy shipping is at any one time, and the specifications of the individual ocean liners.


Port of departureDestinationTime
ShanghaiDurban22 days
ShanghaiCape Town27 days
ShenzhenDurban17 days
ShenzhenCape Town22 days
TianjinDurban26 days
TianjinCape Town38 days
QingdaoDurban24 days
QingdaoCape Town26 days
NingboDurban21 days
NingboCape Town24 days
XiamenDurban21 days
XiamenCape Town27 days

Sea freight from China to South Africa

sea freight from china to south africa

How Long Does Sea Freight via Ocean shipping from China to South Africa?


In general, ocean shipping from China to South Africa takes just under a month, at around 20-26 days. This time will be affected by the specific port of origin in China as well as the port of arrival in South Africa. Other factors, such as time of year, will also factor into the time.


In terms of receiving your goods, your choice of shipping container packing, whether LCL or FCL, will also affect the time. FCL shipping will generally be quicker, as there is no need to consolidate and deconsolidate your goods at either port.


The table below shows the estimated times for shipping from China to South Africa, depending on the ports of departure in China and arrival in South Africa.


 Shipping from Shanghai

(CNSHA Port)

Shipping from Ningbo

(CNNGB Port)

Shipping from Shenzhen

(CNSZX Port)

Durban20-22 days22-24 days23-28 days
East London25-31 days25-31 days23-28 days
Ngqura26-31 days26-31 days24-28 days
Port Elizabeth26-31 days26-31 days24-28 days
Mossel Bay27-32 days27-32 days24-29 days
Cape Town25-30 days27-33 days24-26 days
Saldanha27-33 days27-33 days25-30 days

How Much Do Shipping Containers from China to South Africa cost?


Container shipping costs vary according to the port of arrival and departure. The table below gives estimates for the costs. Be aware that these prices do not encompass the full costs of shipping from China to South Africa, only the transit charges for FCL shipping.


Container shipping rates from China to South Africa: 40’ container


 Shanghai (↓LOW↓)Shanghai (↑HIGH↑)Ningbo (↓LOW↓)Ningbo (↑HIGH↑)Shenzhen (↓LOW↓)Shenzhen (↑HIGH↑)
Port ElizabethR78,386.40R82,741.20R78,386.40R82,741.20R78,386.40R82,741.20
Cape TownR76,934.80R84,192.80R76,934.80R84,192.80R76,934.80R84,192.80

How Much Does LCL Cost from China to South Africa?


LCL shipping (less than container load) can make sense if you aren’t shipping enough cargo to fill a full container. Below are the estimate prices for LCL shipping per CBM.


 Shanghai (↓LOW↓)Shanghai (↑HIGH↑)Ningbo (↓LOW↓)Ningbo (↑HIGH↑)Shenzhen (↓LOW↓)Shenzhen (↑HIGH↑)


How can ship cheaply from China to South Africa:


All business want to get the best possible price when shipping and with some due diligence and research, as well as a reliable freight forwarder, it is possible to develop a shipping strategy that saves you money. If it’s possible, then ordering enough cargo to fill an FCL container can make economical.


While of course this will be more expensive in terms of goods, FCL containers bring advantages of speed and can be cheaper overall because of this. It can also be prudent to place orders at certain times of year. During holiday times shipping can be expensive owing to the traffic of shipments, so if possible, try to order outside of those times.


Your freight forwarder should be able to advise you of the best times to ship.


FCL shipping from China to South Africa:


A standard 40 foot container can accommodate 22 standard pallets, with a 20 foot container holding 10 pallets. If you’re shipping large volumes and can fill a container, it makes sense to choose FCL (Full Container Load). The other advantage of Full Container Load is that your items are kept separate from other importers.


FCL shipping means renting an entire container for your shipment. If you have a large enough cargo to occupy a container, or even most of a container, FCL shipping may make the most economical sense. It’s also quicker than LCL shipping as there is no need to consolidate or deconsolidate your items from others.


Your container will also remain sealed throughout the journey and unless customs official select it for inspection will be sealed until it arrives at your address or chosen destination.


FCL 20 Foot containers from China to South Africa will cost around $1800-1900


LCL shipment from China to South Africa:


LCL (Less than a Container Load) refers to shipping where your goods share space within a container with other goods. If you’re okay with that, then LCL shipping (also known as groupage) offers a more economical way to ship smaller quantities that make up less than half of the volume of a full container.


LCL shipping means your goods will share space with goods from other companies. This also means that your delivery might take a little bit longer, because of both the packing and unpacking process. Before departure, your goods will be stored in a consolidation warehouse in China until departure, and then on arrival be held in a de-consolidation warehouse in South Africa before they are delivered to your address.

Main seaports of China

As a large country with a long coastline, China has many seaports that connect to the world. Being familiar with the ports may help you to plan your shipping more efficiently.



Shenzhen is made up of small ports along the coastline of Shenzhen, which is located in the southeast of China. The port serves around 130 routes internationally with over 500 ships operating through the port each month.



Guangzhou is one of the largest container ports in the world with around 20 million containers passing through each year. It is China’s predominant southern port. Available facilities at Guangzhou are loading and unloading, bonded warehousing, handling and storage of containers. The port connects to over 300 ports worldwide.


Hong Kong:

Hong Kong is a historically busy port than in the many years of its existence has laid claim to being the most important port in the world. Currently it is in the top 5 of busiest global ports and has nine terminals and eighteen berths over two square kilometers that give it a large capacity for serving the world of international trade. Due to its location and business, shipments passing through Hong Kong may be more expensive than other ports and could take more time.



Xiamen Port is located in the island of Xiamen and is a popular port for the major Chinese shipping companies. Ocean liners from Xiamen serve around 50 countries worldwide via 68 shipping routes. Almost 500 ships pass through each month.



Located by the East China Sea in Zhejiang Province, Ningbo-Zhou Shan processes around 20 million containers annually and a is a natural deep water port. Cutting edge technology means that facilities here can load and unload incredibly efficiently. It has five terminals and is close to Shanghai.



Shanghai is the world’s busiest and largest container port and is both a river and deep-sea port equipped with cutting edge facilities and infrastructure. Shanghai has three break-bulk terminals and two bulk cargos and 34 container quays. Shanghai has connections with almost every major port in the world.



Qingdao is one of the ten most busiest ports in the world and is located on the Yellow Sea, in Shandong Province. There are two shipping container terminals at Qingdao and the port links to 450 ports worldwide, serving 130 countries. Qingdao’s infrastructure is well-equipped to handle high volumes of cargo and cope with the largest vessels on the ocean.



Tianjin, is Northern China’s largest port and is the gateway to trade with Beijing. Serving 180 countries and with routes to around 600 ports, Tianjin is one of the ten busiest ports in the world with all major shipping companies represented and with around 15 million TEU’s annually.

Main ports of South Africa

South Africa is home to many important ports and we take a look at some of them here.


Cape town:

Cape town is located at the very bottom of the African continent and as such is close to the some of the busiest shipping routes in the world. It is the second busiest port in South Africa and is home to six deep sea berths.


Port of Elizabeth:

Port Elizabeth’s terminal is able to handle millions of tonnes of cargo each year and its container terminal hosts three berths.



Durban is South Africa’s businest port and handles around 2.8 million TEU’s annually, which represents a massive 60% of all South Africa’s imports. The port is improving its infrastructure and facilities and has around 60 berths for ships. Similar to Cape Town, the port’s climate means it is open throughout the year.


Saldanha Bay:

Saldanha Bay is a relatively new port and it already has plans to expand. This port was developed initially to serve the nearby iron ore mines. It currently does not handle containers.


Richards Bay:

Richards Bay is a port that mostly handles exports from South Africa, mostly coal. It handles around 200 ships a year and has a number of different terminals for different uses: a dry bulk terminal, a coal terminal, and a multi-purpose terminal. The Port has around 21 berths.

Airfreight from China to South Africa

air cargo from china to south africa

How much Does Air Freight from China to South Africa cost?


Like other modes of transport, air freight from China to South Africa can vary according to many different factors such as the time of year, and the quantity of the cargo.


The table below gives average prices for shipping via air freight based on weight.


45kg (↓LOW↓)45kg (↑HIGH↑)100kg (↓LOW↓)100kg (↑HIGH↑)200kg (↓LOW↓)200kg (↑HIGH↑)300kg (↓LOW↓)300kg (↑HIGH↑)


If you’re in need of ultra-quick delivery you can also consider express delivery service via courier. Many well known companies offer this service which will deliver your package from door-to-door without fuss. Although keep in mind that because of the expense of this service it generally makes sense for smallish packages.


Main airports in China


China has a large network of airports across the country that serve both internal and international travel. Below are some of the most important airports in the country that can link to international freight.



Shenzhen is the 5th largest airport in China and serves international and internal/domestic travel and transport. Located in the south of the country, Shenzhen hosts passenger and cargo flights.



Guangzhou is an important city in China and the capital of Guangdong province, a region know for its electronics industry fairs. After extensive upgrades in the 2000s, Guangzhou Airport is a fully functioning modern international airport serving international trade.


Hong Kong:

As well as its busy seaport, Hong Kong airport is also one of the busiest hubs for international trade in the world, serving domestic and international passengers and businesses.



Beijing is China’s capital city and as expected, the airport is a world-class standard with plenty of modern facilities. The airport is patronised by all major airline carriers.



Shanghai is one of China’s most important cities and has two airports. Shanghai-Pudong is one of the world’s most busiest airports, close to the business district of Shanghai and handles around 4 million tonnes of cargo annually.



Chengdu is a growing airport in China that is accommodates the transport and business needs of Sichuan province and its surrounding regions of the west of China. The airport has capacity to link with almost 100 domestic airports and around 50 international destinations.



Located in Zhejiang province, Hangzhou, is the tenth busiest airport in China. Around a decade ago a new terminal was built into order to upgrade the airport’s capacity for both passengers and cargo. The airport is now well-equipped to serve both private and commercial travel, with around a million passengers annually passing through.



Serving the northwest of China, Xi’an airport has grown to become one of the top 5 most busiest airports in the whole country, with both domestic and international links.


Main airports in South Africa


The following section looks at some of the major international airports in South Africa.


Cape town:

Cape town is the second busiest airport in China and one of the busiest on the whole continent. After getting upgrades around a decade ago, more expansions, including new terminals and runways are planned in order to increase capacity for larger aircraft. This airport is served by major international carriers.


O.R. Tambo/Johannesburg:

O.R. Tambo international airport sees over 20 millions passengers pass through its gates annually and is one of the continents busiest airports.


King Shaka/Durban:

King Shaka Airport in Durban is a relatively new airport, opening in 2010, and since then becoming well-known for its facilities and services. The airport’s capacity means that around 7 million passengers are able to pass through its gates each year and it is served by domestic and international airlines.


King Shaka airport opened its doors to the public in 2010. It has since collected many international and regional awards and acclaim. The airport can handle 7.5 million passengers annually. All the major international and regional airlines now fly to and from this airport.



A smaller airport compared to the others, Kimberly serves the Northern cape area of South Africa. This airport hosts around 200,000 passengers each year.

How many days does it take for air freight to be transported from China to South Africa?


While of course the actual journey from port to port will take less than a day, international air freight is a little more complicated than that, as your goods will need to pass through customs on both sites. In total regular air freight from China to South Africa will take around 8-10 days. Express delivery courier services may be a few days quicker.


Airfreight from China to South Africa:


Contact us at Sino Shipping for the best prices when it comes to air freight. If you’re shipping a package from China to South Africa, then Sino Shipping will use our years of experience and networks to match you with the best carrier who will ship your packages for the quickest time at the best price.


Our website can give you a quick price quote for this service. Please get in contact with any questions you may have about this service.


Courier from China to South Africa:


Express is the fastest means of transport and often the simplest when it comes to shipping relatively small quantities of goods. A door-to-door service means you’ll get the goods shipped from the point of origin in China all the way to your business address.


Express delivery refers to delivery via air by specialised courier companies. Of course, this speed and service comes with a higher price and express is not suitable for larger, bulkier goods. If you’re not sure whether your goods qualify for express then get in touch.


FedEx shipping from China to South Africa:


FedEx is a well known American express delivery company and serves both China and South Africa. Courier services via FedEx from China to South Africa will take around 2-3 days, as do most courier companies. Compared to regular air freight, FedEx delivery is more expensive, but it will reach you quicker.


It is up to you to try and balance your business needs to see whether the quicker time will save you money in the long term, even if it’s more expensive initially.


As with most courier companies, it’s common to send relatively small packages when using services such as FedEx, as prices will add up the more you send.


DHL shipping from China to South Africa:


DHL is another well-known courier company that has worldwide connections. DHL can deliver your package in around 3-5 working says. DHL is known as a reliable service for courier shipping but it is also one of the most expensive options out there.


UPS shipping from China to South Africa:


UPS is know globally as a reputable courier/express delivery company. UPS serves both China and South Africa and could be a good option for your business if you need a courier company to deliver goods quickly. As with most courier companies, it’s common to send relatively small packages when using services such as UPS, as prices will add up the more you send.


TNT shipping from China to South Africa:


TNT offers a reliable service and is a well known brand in the world of express delivery and is a service available for both Chinese and South Africa delivery. As with most courier companies, it’s common to send relatively small packages when using services such as TNT as prices will add up the more you send.


EMS shipping from China to South Africa:


EMS stands for Express Mail Service is an economically option for packages to be delivered across the world. Compared to the other courier companies, it is cheaper, however, it may also be slightly longer when it comes to delivery time.


If this is okay with you and your business plans, then EMS could be a valuable tool in your international logistics toolbox. It is the cheapest courier service between China and South Africa.


Door to door service from China to South Africa:


A Door-to-Door service refers to the “door” of your supplier to the “door” of your home or business address. In practice this means that when you are using a door-to-door service, the courier or agent will collect the cargo/goods/package directly from the retailer or factory in China and arrange for it to be delivered all the way to your South African address.


Such a service can be a good way to get your goods hassle-free without having to worry about the details of logistics.


If you’re shipping a package from China to South Africa, then Sino Shipping can use our years of experience and networks to match you with the best carrier who will ship your packages for the quickest time at the best price. Our website can give you a quick price quote for this service. Please get in contact with any questions you may have about this service.


Custom clearance South Africa:


Navigating the waters of customs documentation as well as arranging for your goods to be transported in the most cost and time-efficient way can be a daunting task for importers. That’s why it makes financial sense to utilise 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’re transporting goods from China to South Africa, then choosing the right freight forwarder can make a huge difference to the success of 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.

South African Customs Procedures.


The South African customs system uses a harmonised system for customs classification. For custom classification. The South African Revenue Service (SARS) applies around 90,000 product codes to all imported goods. A document called the Single Administrative Document (SAD) is used for import clearance.


You will need to obtain a SAD by submitting your shipping docments such as a bill of lading, commercial invoice, certificate of origin, packing list. For a full list of required documents, consult the SARS website.


Documents required for shipping from China to South Africa


When importing from China to South Africa, you will need the following documents for passing South African customs:

  • Bill of lading
  • Packing list
  • Commercial invoice
  • Import Permit
  • Customs Import Declaration
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Certificate of product registration
  • Any other document required from any government department or agency for a special type of goods that we have discussed above.


List of shipping companies in South Africa:

The companies below operate to and from South Africa:

  • Mediterranean Shipping Company (Pty) Ltd
  • GMA Logistics
  • MACS Maritime Carrier Shipping GmbH & Co.
  • Safmarine South Africa
  • Kintetsu World Express South Africa (Pty) Ltd
  • Turners Shipping
  • Steinweg Bridge (Pty) Ltd
  • Africamarine Ships Agency (Pty) Ltd

Sending Parcels from China to South Africa


If you wish to send a package from from China to South Africa toy u

For this service you can select the most appropriate offer from the list provided. Following this you can make your payment and then wait for the parcel to be delivered.


Easy! Our online shipping platform combines many different carriers from all over the world. By accessing this field we are able to find the spots of available space and then allocate it for your delivery. In this way we save you money and can get your goods to you as quickly as possible.


This unique system means you can transport your goods from China to South Africa in the quickest possible time and especially in cases where urgency is a requirement.


All our deliveries through this service are covered by standard insurance (€25) as well as our own insurance. This ensures that your peace of mind is covered in any eventuality.


What’s the Cost?


To find out the cost, make sure you enter your destination as well as the place the parcel will be sent from. Then, enter the weight and size of the parcel. From there, we’ll be able to show you a list of prices for various carriers we work with.

The cost will be a combination of all of the above factors. Whatever you choose, we’ll treat your delivery as a priority, especially when we are transporting it from the point of origin to the exporting airport and from the importing airport to your address. All prices include the standard insurance as well as fuel charges.

When you’re looking for the most affordable option for quick delivery, it pays to choose us.


How long will it take?


Most packages will take around 3 or more days to arrive at their destination. Of course there are many factors that affect this, ranging from how far the final destination is from the port, to seasonal occurrences and weather.

Sometimes it can even be quicker and may reach you in 1 or 2 business days. We also enable you to track your package regularly, so you can follow where it is when you need to.


What is prohibited?


Different companies have different rules and of course different countries too have prohibited items. Please make sure you check these before making an order as it is better safe than sorry. We cooperate with many different carriers such as UPS, DHL, IMX, DPD, InPost FedEx, TNT, ASM, and TRANSIMEKSA, each of which has their own specific rules too.


Remember, if you are in doubt about whether your package is safe or legal to ship, then make sure you consult with one of our expert staff. It will cost a lot of money in the long run if you organise a shipping strategy only to find out that the item you want to ship is prohibited.


Do not try to subvert the rules as all parcels are scanned before shipping and if you are found to be trying to ship prohibited items, the package will be returned to you at your own expense. Some of the goods that are prohibited are: weapons, acids or other goods that can damage other parcels. Items such as restricted drugs or tobacco are also controlled substances.


How to wrap and package your goods.


In order for your goods to reach their destination without being damaged it pays to make sure they are packed well. Make sure to choose a good box, one that is stiff and resilient enough to absorb any impacts or bumps your package may take.


Of course, most of the time, your package won’t get bumped at all, but it pays to be sure. If the box doesn’t encompass the whole of the goods inside it then fill the empty space with packing material so your goods don’t rattle. Your package will also need to have a sticker on it with the bill of lading that we will send to you clearly visible.