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Everything You Need to Know About Customs Bonds for International Tradeshow Shipping

An International Tradeshow Shipping Company Can Handle Your Customs Bonds

Customs bonds and ATA Carnets are two options for saving money on your shipment to the U.S. Both options serve as a security for payment of fees, duties and taxes, as well as compliance with U.S. law. The bond is meant to protect the U.S. government in case an importer fails to pay penalties and duties after the release of goods or when they are in CBP custody. It also speeds up the clearance. Obtaining a customs bond may be a vital part of international tradeshow shipping to the U.S.

If you don’t properly prepare for the bond, you could face serious problems. It is crucial to ensure that it meets specific minimum requirements. Your shipment cannot clear U.S. customs if the bond is not executed correctly.

Types of Customs Bonds

Single Entry Bond
This type of customs bond covers only one custom entry. The bonds are calculated on the value of duties, merchandise, taxes, and fees. Typically, the cost of this type of bond is based on the total value of the merchandise.

Continuous Bond
This bond covers all entries made by the importer at U.S. ports of entry. $50,000 is the minimum liability charge for a continuous bond. The validity of these bonds is 1 year. If you have either high value items or plan to ship multiple times to U.S. shows this option may be best.

Important tip: If you are a regular shipper, develop your account relationship with CBP. Having a clean record with customs will help speed up clearance in some cases.

Why Importers Need a Customs Bond

When importing, you are only sure of taxes and duties. The government requires you to have a bond, so it guarantees your taxes and duties are paid even when your company can’t pay due to extreme events, such as bankruptcy. Bonds cover all shipments traveling by truck, air or water. If you are not covered, you may encounter severe delays or face fines.

How to Choose a Bond Provider for Your International Tradeshow Shipping Needs

Not all customs bonds are created equal, whether your volume suggests a Single-transaction Bond or a Continuous Bond. The insurance carrier sets the cost of your bond, not customs. If you are planning for international tradeshow shipping, it is advisable to purchase bonds through reputable and highly knowledgeable providers. Doing so will not only allow you to obtain competitive rates, but will also give you peace of mind.

Choosing a bond depends on how often you import goods. A Single-transaction Bond is an excellent choice if you occasionally import (less than 3 times annually). The best investment for those who ship frequently is the Continuous Bond.

Understanding customs bonds and ATA Carnets can be complicated, which is why it’s beneficial to work with an international tradeshow shipping company, as they can handle all documentation for you. Contact us today at 702-800-6385 to get a quote.

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How to Handle Tradeshow Shipping Delays

AMR Group Will Work to Prevent Tradeshow Shipping Delays on Your Behalf

Deadlines are crucial in tradeshows, and you need to be able to trust your materials will be delivered in time for the event. However, unforeseen circumstances may occur, and your shipment may be delayed due to factors like inadequate paperwork, port congestion or airfreight capacity issues. For successful tradeshow shipping, below are tips on what to do in case of delays, and how to avoid them in the future.

What to Do When Your Tradeshow Shipping Material Delays

1. Consult Your Show Management about Your Options
In case of delay, contact your show management team to find out what options are there for last-minute situations such as yours. Ask the management if they allow direct deliveries to the venue on the morning of the tradeshow. By talking to the show management team, you get to know how long you have, so you can arrange for the materials to be delivered smoothly.

2. Contact Your Carrier
Delayed delivery of your display materials may be due to a variety of reasons, a few examples include inadequate paperwork at customs, or there may be congestion or traffic problems at the port. The best way to know is by contacting your carrier about the situation and what you need to do to resolve it. For paperwork, you can email the required documents while congestion and capacity delays will need to be addressed by your carrier directly. Communicating with your carrier helps you know the progress of your cargo and what steps are being taken to correct the situation.

3. Wait
Sometimes, customs may take longer than expected. In such a situation, and others like lack of airfreight capacity, the only option you have is to wait for your exhibition materials to be cleared before they can be delivered. Therefore, it is important to ship your items as early as possible. A tradeshow shipping company like AMR Group will be able to help ensure the process goes smoothly.

4. Find Alternative Displays
When waiting is not an option, display alternatives are your best bet. Ask your show management team if you can find temporary or rental displays to use during the event. You can also have your graphics printed and set up on banners. If you are out of time to wait, it may be best to reach out to the official show exhibit builder. You can usually find out who this is by reviewing your exhibitor manual or asking show management.

How to Avoid Tradeshow Shipping Delays

Most delays occur due to flaws in shipping preparations. Here’s how you can avoid the inconvenience of delayed deliveries.

  • Provide all necessary documentation required for your tradeshow shipping company and ensure they are accurately filled out.
  • Clearly label your goods and provide accurate details on the size, material and intended use.
  • Provide the right address, zip code and booth number to avoid your materials goods being delivered to the wrong destination.
  • Give a time allowance. When planning for delivery, set an earlier delivery date (but not too early), so you are not “down to the wire” if there are delays.
  • Work with an experienced international freight forwarder. It eases your shipping process as the freight forwarder will take care of the shipping requirements on your behalf.

If you are looking for an international tradeshow shipping partner who’s both reliable and experienced, contact AMR Group today at 702-800-6385 for all your shipping needs and ensure your goods are delivered on time!

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Don’t Let Natural Disasters Interrupt Your International Tradeshow Shipping Schedule

Work with an International Tradeshow Shipping Company to try to Avoid Weather Delays

Hurricanes, snow storms, typhoons, and flooding can wreak havoc on your international tradeshow shipping plans. As we’re right in the middle of extreme weather season, here are some best practices for shipping during storms.

International Tradeshow Shipping in Extreme Weather

Today, shipping disruptions from extreme weather are 30% higher than they were just 7 years ago, and they can have a serious impact on your ability to do business, including exhibiting at tradeshows. As extreme weather events become more widespread, it pays to take steps to be prepared and lessen their impact.

How to Prepare for Inclement Weather

  • Keep in mind the damage from a storm or other disaster is not isolated to where it occurs. These kinds of disasters can have a ripple effect that can reach thousands of miles away from the impact area. Damage can occur to roads, airports and seaports, delaying delivery of your exhibit items.
  • Stay in communication with your tradeshow and events freight forwarder. If severe weather conditions are predicted during the time your shipment is in transit, discuss what alternative methods and routes are available for getting your goods to the venue on time.
  • If it’s not your initial method of transportation, determine if air freight is a viable option.

Ultimately, every time you ship freight, there is some degree of risk. It can be devastating, not to mention expensive, if you’re forced to exhibit without your exhibit materials. That’s why choosing the proper freight forwarder with extensive experience in tradeshow exhibit shipments is so important. Your freight forwarder is an integral member of your tradeshow team, one whose role is to “steady the ship” when problems occur and be available to assist when you need them.

Since 2011, AMR Group has been handling the international tradeshow shipping needs for businesses big and small. We ship to more than 60 countries and have an international network of partners who are dedicated to tradeshow and event shipping. We can help you track extreme weather events, make recommendations for the best shipping options and provide you with the peace of mind that comes with having your exhibit materials in the right hands. Contact us at 702-800-6385

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How to Take Advantage of Tradeshows & Make Them Worth It

How to Take Advantage of Tradeshows & Make Them Worth It

Connecting with the right target audience is as important goal when picking out tradeshows and events to exhibit at. Tradeshows help build a strong contact email database and boost sales for your company because everyone who is at the trade show is there to seek out services your business offers. You just need to know how to take full advantage of tradeshows and make them worth your time. Here are a handful of suggestions. 

Do Your Research
Most importantly, do your research. Look at the different tradeshows throughout the year, and make sure you’re selecting the right ones for your business. Understand what the tradeshow is, which companies are attending or have attended in the past (oftentimes, big names in your industry will increase the turnout) and whether those in attendance are your major target audience. If the event doesn’t check off all your requirements, look for another event that does. 

Consider Using Associated Hotels
While associated hotels may cost more, it may be beneficial to stay at one for the various networking benefits, as many attendees will book a room closest to the tradeshow venue. You’ll find you’re more likely to mingle and sell products during the after-event cocktail hour than on the busy tradeshow floor. 

Dress for the Event 

If you’re selling custom toys at a comic convention, you probably don’t want to show up in a tuxedo (unless, of course, it’s a custom tuxedo designed after a popular comic book character). That being said, we recommend dressing appropriately for the particular event and industry.

Register Early
There are two advantages of registering early. First, you will have a better selection of booth locations. Select a booth that is clearly visible, has high foot traffic and is large enough (or small enough) for your signs and presentation materials. This way, you won’t need to settle for a booth that doesn’t fit your needs. Second, it is typically less expensive if you register early. Early bird specials can save you hundreds of dollars.

Each of these points will help you maximize your tradeshow potential. However, you need to make sure your tradeshow displays and presentation material arrives at the correct location on time and in one piece. This is where AMR Group comes in. As a trusted event logistics & global freight forwarder, we work with you to make sure all of your tradeshow materials arrive on time and within budget. Contact us at +1-702-800-6385 to learn more.

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Last Friday, a federal judge granted Hanjin temporary protection from vessel arrest and asset liens. A U.S. bankruptcy court in Newark, NJ is scheduled to rule this Friday, when the temporary protection order expires, whether to extend Chapter 15 privileges which protect Hanjin assets from seizure and ships from arrest.

There are currently five Hanjin ships now stranded off U.S. coasts. Three are located outside Los Angeles-Long Beach (LA/LB), one is outside of Savannah, and another is waiting to call the port of New York-New Jersey (NY/NJ). When the vessels eventually berth, importers will find stark differences in how much they have to pay to get containers released. The different approaches are already evident in how ports are handling stranded import containers. See below for information by port complex and other information regarding the impact to U.S. exports and equipment:


In Los Angeles-Long Beach and New York-New Jersey, which are landlord ports, the private-sector terminal operators decide if they will allow a vessel to dock at their facility and how and when to release laden import containers. In most cases, they are demanding that beneficial cargo owners pay them up front for cargo-delivery charges before they agree to release the containers to truckers.

The Port of Long Beach reported Wednesday that Total Terminals International (TTI), which is jointly owned by Hanjin and Terminal Investment Ltd., reopened for delivery of imported containers to truckers, as long as the beneficial cargo owners paid the terminal delivery charges up front, but no vessels were docked at TTI. The port could not say why the terminal was refusing to accept Hanjin ships.

U.S. marshals have seized the Hanjin Montevideo at Long Beach at the behest of fuel suppliers owed nearly $800,000, according to local media. The Hanjin Greece, which had been anchored outside the Los Angeles-Long Beach port complex earlier in the week, is now in Mexican waters to use reserve fuel not allowed in U.S. emissions control areas that mandate low fuel sulfur content.

Hanjin had three vessels at anchor or floating off the Southern California coast on Wednesday, but the vessels did not dock at TTI in Long Beach or at any terminal in Los Angeles-Long Beach. The Southern California terminals reportedly were awaiting a final ruling from the New Jersey bankruptcy court on Friday before taking on the expense of working the vessels.


In Savannah, by contrast, the operating port manages the marine terminal, and the Georgia Ports Authority is not charging Beneficial Cargo Owners (BCOs) to release Hanjin containers. It also isn’t charging demurrage on exports that were slated to sail on Hanjin. The Georgia Ports Authority noted that it is not consignees of Hanjin cargo at fault for the Korean line’s plight.


To the north, the South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA) has waived the non-vessel delivery fee for export loads out-gated. At the Port of Charleston, an operating port, import loads discharged on or after Sept. 1 will be placed on hold until such time as all SCPA charges are settled. The SCPA will collect all port and throughput charges totaling $350 per container from the BCO/responsible party with authorization required from Hanjin.

Prince Rupert, Canada

The only North American port to actually work a Hanjin vessel on Wednesday was Prince Rupert, British Columbia. The Canadian port began discharging containers from a Hanjin vessel on Wednesday. The Hanjin Scarlet had been anchored off the coast since Hanjin filed for bankruptcy protection last week.

U.S. Exports

Most U.S. terminals are refusing to load Hanjin export containers onto vessels. The terminals will release the export containers to truckers, once again if the BCO pays the terminal delivery fee upfront. The BCOs then have the Hanjin containers trucked to their warehouse where the contents are transloaded into containers belonging to other shipping lines, and those containers are then delivered to the terminals where those lines call.


Truckers at ports such as Los Angeles-Long Beach and New York-New Jersey are bracing for fees that terminal operators are charging for demurrage, which is the cost of storing containers on a terminal after free time has expired, and detention or per-diem fees, which are charged for the late return of containers to the terminals after they have been unloaded at BCO warehouses. Some truckers and BCOs claimed that unusually large demurrage fees were being levied by the Maher terminal in New Jersey.


Another residual impact of the Hanjin bankruptcy is the impact it is having on chassis availability, especially in Southern California. Fred Johring, chairman of the Harbor Trucking Association, said thousands of empty Hanjin containers are sitting on chassis at warehouses and parked on streets throughout the region, in effect taking those chassis out of service because terminals are refusing to accept empty containers at their facilities. This number represents almost 10 percent of the total chassis pool in Los Angeles-Long Beach, aggravating a chassis shortage that already exists during the peak-shipping season, Johring said.

For guidance and with regard to your shipments, please stay close to our operations and pricing teams. Please understand that the first available space option is most likely the best one.

AMR Group is diligently working to find alternative shipping solutions to these issues, and we will continue to monitor the market and provide updates to you accordingly.

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Trust in an uncertain world. Finding a qualified event logistics forwarder is key

Global shipping can be a minefield of red tape and corruption not to mention the time factor involved when shipping to an event or tradeshow.  Someone’s job could depend on it (literally).  Imagine for a moment you are a marketing manager tasked with getting the company’s latest gizmo to a tradeshow in Dubai.  Your company is counting on you to make sure the “star of the show” arrives on time and within budget.  By the way this event just became much more high profile since the CEO will be there along with 50 of your top company sales people will be on hand to witness the unveiling.  Better get to work, right?

The first step is to go to your corporate logistics department, right?  Wrong!  In our experience shipping for events and tradeshows is very different from most company’s corporate, day to day logistics process.  The hurdles are not only higher but they are altogether different.  The right answer is to reach out to someone who knows events and knows tradeshows.  Not only that but also knows how they work outside the US and Canada.

Shipping to events and tradeshows overseas is very different from shipping to shows in the US and Canada.  There is no such thing as a general service contractor like GES or Freeman and most of the time there is no “advanced warehouse”.  The other problem is customs clearance.  Your general cargo forwarder is not usually in tune with who the appointed onsite freight forwarder is and therefore they will not have inside knowledge about the requirements including all deadlines and specific types of import customs regulations for that specific country.  ATA Carnet, Temporary import bond, permanent vs. temporary import are all foreign to most general cargo forwarders and you most likely don’t have the time for them to “go to school” on these subjects.  So, what to do, what to do?

The answer is to reach out to an event logistics expert like AMR Group.  If you don’t know anyone in the field its best to rely on your trusted colleagues from the industry to provide referrals.  If you don’t have access to a network of colleagues then it may be of benefit to ask the show organizer for a referral or visit the website of the professional trade association for exhibition logistics professionals called IELA (International Exhibition Logistics Association) at  There you will find a list of professionals who can help you.

Trust is important because someone’s job may be on the line.  Trust is important because your company reputation could be damaged and the outcome may affect future sales.  Trust is important because it helps relieve some of your fears of the unknown.

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Brazil Welcomes ATA Carnet Program

Brazil Welcomes ATA Carnet ProgramJust in time for the largest sporting event in the world Brazil has started accepting ATA Carnets for temporary importation of professional equipment and exhibitions.  The use of this type of internationally recognized document (which allows goods to enter the country on a temporary basis without paying heavy import tariffs or duty and tax) will be limited as the program is rolled out around the country but, we hope its introduction will encourage foreign participation at Brazil’s hundreds of events and tradeshows each year.

Brazil hosts many international cultural, political, sporting events, conferences, and trade shows every year. By adopting the ATA Carnet system, Brazil is making it much easier for U.S. exporters to participate and exhibit at these events. Brazil is the largest economy in South America, the 8th largest in the word and the United States’ 11th largest goods export market. Modern infrastructure and facilities as well as a population of 193 million makes this market very attractive to U.S. exporters and investors.

AMR Group can arrange ATA Carnet’s for our customers as well as guiding your event and tradeshow shipments to their final destination on time, every time!  Brazil’s announcement should reduce transit times and costs in the future.

With this great news we look forward to providing you with ATA Carnets to Brazil! Contact AMR Group Inc today and be the first to enter Brazil on an ATA Carnet! You can reach us at +1-702-800-6385 or by email at

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Cargo Insurance – a strong consideration

Liability is a word often used in the shipping industry and is the main reason one should consider obtaining Cargo insurance when shipping and especially for tradeshows.

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Supply and Demand in Logistics

When it comes to US exhibitors shipping full truckloads both to and from domestic tradeshows we frequently get asked why the rates are not always the same since it is after all the same distance. In the interest explaining why, it is most easily explained by the single biggest contributing factor which are “markets”.

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