The conflict in Ukraine is further impacting a strained supply chain and creating higher freight costs.

Shipping carriers have already been struggling to deal with pandemic-related supply chain issues. Due to lockdown measures, lack of supply, labor shortages and problems finding and producing shipping containers, many companies are currently dealing with delays and high shipping prices.

While manufacturers and shipping companies have started efforts to repair the supply chain disruption, the current war will likely further exacerbate the problem.

From increased gas prices to trade sanctions against Russia, here’s how all forms of shipping have been affected by this conflict and what you can do to mitigate these issues.

Ocean freights

Businesses should expect increased freight costs and more shipping delays due to a bottleneck at a variety of ports. This is due to the fact that most ships were unable to port at Ukraine and many ocean carriers are refusing to take new bookings from Russia.

As oil prices climb due to the Ukraine conflict, ocean carriers are also being impacted by high fuel prices. War Risk Surcharges could also be added to shipments coming from the affected area, which would again inflate shipping prices. Container prices, which have already increased due to low supply in the pandemic, are also likely to go up.

Air freights

Air freights are grappling with many of the same issues as ocean freights, with one big difference. While higher gas prices and container shortages are all concerning, the destruction of the world’s largest freight aircraft was a huge blow to Asia-Europe shipping, which affects North American shipping as well. The Antonov AN-225, also called Mriya, or Dream, was destroyed during the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It’s also important to note that Russian air carriers have been banned from using airspace in many countries, including the U.S. Some carriers could cancel Asia-Europe services due to this sanction, which would further strain the supply chain.

Carriers who still service the region around Ukraine and Russia will experience delays and price increases due to the need to use longer, alternative routes.


It’s no surprise that trucks are also struggling to deal with high oil prices, which led to increased diesel costs. Russian sanctions will likely cause gas prices to go up even higher, which affects shipping costs throughout all of North America.

What should you do?

At Ship North America, we understand how frustrating shipping delays and higher freight costs can be.

Here’s our top tips for companies in these difficult times:

⦁ Before settling on a shipping option, make sure you compare quotes to ensure you’re getting efficient service at the best price.
⦁ Review which shipping mode works best at this time. It may be worth it to switch to air freight shipping to decrease transit times.
⦁ Change your transit time expectations and make sure to properly communicate these changes to your customers.
⦁ Adjust your budget to reflect current shipping prices and always factor in the cost of freight when looking at profitability of your products.
⦁ Book as soon as possible and communicate with all parties involved.
⦁ Ensure you have the proper manpower needed when your goods arrive to avoid any further delays.