Aviation Logistics Knowledge Lecture – What is “AS” class rate?

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Aviation Logistics Knowledge Lecture – What is “AS” class rate?

Some of our friends might have already heard of the “AS” class rate, but not really sure how it works. Now let me demonstrate the theosis here for you so you can enjoy this particular policy when you send air freight shipments.


Let’s just say, there is a shipment of 40kg, and now you want to know the air freight rate. First, we must understand that the class rate in air freight is usually divided into M, N, Q45, Q100, Q300, Q500, and Q1000. They represent minimum charge, the rate for under 45kg, the rate for 45-99kg, the rate for 100-299kg, the rate for 300-499kg, the rate for 500-999kg, and the rate for over 1000kg. So obviously, the shipment of 40kg should apply the class rate of N. Let’s say the N rate is $50/kg and the Q45 rate is $30/kg.


In this case, the shipping cost with N rate is 40kg x $50/kg = $2000. But 40kg is quite close to 45kg, right? So what if we apply the class rate for Q45? Let’s do the math: 45kg x $30/kg = $1350.


Now you can see there is a huge gap when applying different class rates. According to IATA policy, when a shipment is closed to the next class rate, it is ok to apply the next class rate – of course, the weight of the shipment will also need to apply to the next weight class.


For the example we just raised, using Q45 class rate is more competitive than using the N rate. But at the same time, the chargeable weight of the shipment will need to be 45kg, not 40kg. But still, the total price is way lower than using the N rate.


This is the concept of the “AS” class rate. The shipment is now treated as 45kg. Especially when the gap is between 45kg and under, the difference could be big between these two. The policy is to allow the shipment to use whichever class rate is more competitive.


But then this is only the policy from IATA, the carrier also has the power to refuse to use the “AS” class rate. This depends on individual carriers’ policies.


If the carrier allows the “AS” class rate, and you have a shipment that is closed to the next class, then this might be a good idea to save the shipping cost.


Hope you can benefit from this article.

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