Why the unit FOB price is very high when the order quantity is small

Clients who import paper boxes from China for the first time might be surprised by the high FOB unit price quote. They may feel cheated and get angry or frustrated. There are two main reasons for the high FOB price quote when the order quantity is small. They are the fixed custom fees and factory fees.

Fixed Custom Fees:

When you import the paper boxes from China, you will have a shipping forwarder to take care of the sea or air shipment for you. Then the shipping forwarder will charge us some custom related fees as below. The shipping forwarder is usually designated by you.

  1. Shanghai port custom clearance fees: around 25USD.
  2. CFS(container freight station) fees: 10-15USD/CBM. Usually the total volume of the paper boxes you order will be less than 3 cubic meters. In this situation, the shipping forward will charge us the fees based on the volume of 3 CBM. It means that the CFS fees will be 30-45USD.
  3. Documentation fees: around 35USD. This is for the Bill of Lading document. With it, you can pick up the goods at your place.
  4. Handling fees: around 35USD.
  5. ENS: 25USD if you are from the European countries.
  6. ACI/AMS: 25USD if you are from USA or Canada
  7. Warehouse fees: around 50USD. When our truck drive sends the goods to the warehouse designated by your shipping forwarder. He will be charged around 50USD for the warehouse fees.
  8. B/L of lading telex release: 25USD.

Then the fees above will be around 225USD.

When you order only 100pcs, it means that we need add 2.25USD to the unit price. 1000pcs, 0.225USD; 10,000pcs, 0.02USD.

Fixed Factory Fees:

For a custom printed paper box, the cutting die fees, CTP fees, machine setup fees are all fixed no matter your order quantity is 100pcs or 100,000pcs. Such fees will cost us around 100-300USD based on your box specifications. The important factor includes the box size(big or small), color printing(single color, or CMYK full color, or with PMS colors, or with Metallic PMS colors), die-cut complexity(a simple diecut or complex diecut), finish(spot UV, foil stamping, embossing, debossing, laminating, varnishing).

As you can see, at least around 400USD will be introduced no matter your order quantity is small or big. And this is why the unit FOB price is extremly high when your order quantity is just too small, 100pcs, 500pcs.

And this also explains why the unit price will be very low when the order quanity reaches above 5000pcs.