Generally speaking, importers prefer CIF terms when they’re new to international trade or have relatively little freight volume. These importers often find CIF simpler as their suppliers are responsible for arranging freight and insurance details. Under these terms, the importer relinquishes control of choosing freight carriers, routing and other shipping specifics. For these companies, convenience outweighs the need for enhanced shipment control and associated freight savings.
Shipping CIF grows increasingly complex as companies increase their number of overseas suppliers and overall freight volume. The greater the number of CIF shipments, the more problems can occur with obtaining accurate shipment information. Overseas suppliers are not well-positioned to handle service issues that develop in transit. What’s more, they are not required to arrange anything past the port of destination, so final delivery concerns, monitoring of penalty situations (demurrage, per diem), etc., are all the importer’s responsibilities. Regular importers quickly grow tired of the hassle of relying on suppliers and their freight agents for shipment information.