|By Angie Garred (New BonaireTalk Poster - Post #6) on Monday, February 25, 2008 - 5:36 pm:|
We keep hearing about how the incoming cruise ships are disrupting the cargo ships from reaching port in Bonaire to unload food and other essential items. We're looking into shipping furniture and other goods from Florida, and just wondering if we should expect a delay upon arrival; perhaps days or weeks?? Anyone have any thoughts or experience with this?
|By Ruth van Tilburg (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #827) on Tuesday, February 26, 2008 - 10:41 am:|
It's not so simple as a cruise ship blocking the dock. Here's how it goes, from my personal experience: The big container ships leave Fla on Thursdays or Fridays, depending upon US holidays/weather/captain's decision, etc. in the US. They arrive in Curacao sometime between Wednesday to as late as Friday--again, depending upon sea conditions. If we're lucky, they arrive in Curacao Wed. during the day, and the local shipping line, Don Andres, starts receiving the Bonaire-bound containers and bringing them here Wed. afternoon/evening. Depending upon how many containers, they'll keep sailing back & forth until all the cargo is here (they'll sail at night & unload at night if there are cruise ships during the day). If Rocargo (Amcar) is handling your shipment, the container will go there (whether the entire container is yours, or you're cargo is in a shared container), where your stuff will have to clear customs/be unloaded by the Rocargo staff. If you are shipping your own container, Rocargo can deliver the container to your house, where you'll hire people to unload it, and will have to wait your turn for the customs agent to come and allow you to open the container (the agent will stay until it's empty, and he/she is satisfied that all items in the container have been declared correctly. You have to pay for the agent to do this (by the hour, so it's a good idea to have yourself organized to unload quickly). Depending upon how busy they are (Rocargo & Customs), you might get to your order by that Friday, or the following Mon/Tue (local holidays can interfere at this point; as can incorrectly done customs papers; we let Rocargo prepare our customs import papers-worth the extra cost). Other businesses shipping full containers have them delivered to their place (for example, Warehouse or Cultimara, etc), where they have to wait for a customs agent to standby while the container is opened & emptied (you cannot open any container w/o a customs agent there). Other shared containers (with cargo from Curacao only) are opened at Don Andres itself, and you are called to pick up your stuff. Rarely a week goes by when we're not getting something from either the US or Curacao-in my personal experience, most delays are caused by when the "mother" ship arrives in Curacao, how the containers are handled in Curacao, and the volume Bonaire's agents can handle when they arrive (there are only so many customs agents, and actual people with forklifts, etc, to physically unload stuff). If everyone's containers arrive on Thursday, it's not reasonable to expect that every one can be cleared and emptied that day, or even the next. Containers with frozen or chilled items have priority, dry ones (like ones containing furniture) last. Delays can happen at any of these stages. If you're arriving to live/spend extended time on Bonaire, before your container, plan on a hotel stay, or bring an air-mattress/sheets, etc, to get you thru the waiting period. You can call Rocargo, 011-599-717-8922 for more detailed info/advice on importing your stuff (assuming you are using their agent in the USA, Amcar Freight).
|By Mickey McCarthy (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #540) on Tuesday, February 26, 2008 - 11:43 am:|
|By Ruth van Tilburg (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #828) on Tuesday, February 26, 2008 - 12:49 pm:|
Thanks. It was a very long-winded way of saying, 'if a few days or weeks are going to really affect you, you've got to do a "changes in latitude, changes in attitude," (or learn logistics very well and assume a 4-6 week lead time for all imports).
|By YucatanPat (Sand$-A3) (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #129) on Tuesday, February 26, 2008 - 5:39 pm:|
Ruth, great read and thanks for such an informative post. Many inventory timing issues now make sense that we have experienced on Bonaire when shopping.
|By Ruth van Tilburg (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #829) on Thursday, February 28, 2008 - 5:15 pm:|
Paragraph 535, Don't Stop the Carnival, Part 2:
|By Jerry (Supreme BonaireTalker - Post #9262) on Thursday, February 28, 2008 - 5:24 pm:|
Ruth, when you send them the payment, send it by cargo ship.
|By Ruth van Tilburg (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #830) on Thursday, February 28, 2008 - 5:39 pm:|
Yes, good idea--I'll tape it to the ceiling of one container going back to CUR, but won't tell them which one!
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