Puerto Rico Freight Forwarding
Full-Service Freight & Logistics Solutions
to and from Puerto Rico

Moving goods and equipment to or from Puerto Rico? Approved Freight Forwarders has the all-in-one solutions to make it simple. With extensive experience in both Jones Act and international destinations, plus on-the-ground resources on Puerto Rico, we can create a logistics flow custom-tailored for your needs—and your timeline.


Access to four major ocean carriers and a local trucking fleet—plus knowledgeable resources to assist with Hacienda clearance—means we can deliver the flexible, nimble, and cost-effective freight solutions that keep your Puerto Rico supply chain running smoothly.

End to End 3PL Solutions to and from Puerto Rico

Whether you’re moving cargo northbound or southbound, working with international suppliers, or leveraging specialized solutions like FCL reefer service, Approved can create a custom, all-in-one freight solution to move your shipment from any origin to any destination.


Additionally, by working in lockstep with our resources in Puerto-Rico, Approved will make it all happen with the unmatched precision and attention to detail that we’re known for.


We do it all—end-to-end domestic and international Puerto Rico freight solutions, including:

Ocean Freight: Less-Than-Container Load (LCL)

Ocean Freight: Full Container Load (FCL)

Air Freight Shipments

Intermodal Shipments

Pickup & Delivery


Warehousing & Distribution

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Flexible Solutions for Puerto Rico Freight

Today’s business environment calls for supply chain solutions that can flex and respond to fluctuating needs.


When it comes to Puerto Rico freight, Approved offers a full menu of options to keep your supply chain moving efficiently and cost-effectively with:

  • Door-to-door pickup and delivery services to and from any location on Puerto Rico, the continental U.S., or internationally.
  • Solutions for northbound and southbound freight via air freight and FCL/LCL ocean freight, including international freight shipments in both directions
  • Access to all available ocean freight sail dates to maximize your options for moving freight to Puerto Rico—fast
  • Mainland warehousing options to save you money, plus speedy solutions to transfer backstock to Puerto Rico
  • Assistance with Hacienda clearance to keep your cargo moving forward, quickly and efficiently
  • An online portal that offers you real-time reporting for full visibility into all of your Puerto Rico freight shipments

Get started with a complimentary consultation.

Every Type of Freight to and from Puerto Rico

Full container loads, consolidated loads, oversize cargo and equipment, hazardous goods, temperature-controlled FCL shipments—we handle them all, in both directions.

We’ve worked with customers across industries in Puerto Rico, on the U.S. mainland, and internationally to ship all kinds of cargo. We’ve moved auto parts, food products, consumer goods, retail inventory, furniture, business equipment, heavy machinery, and much more. No shipment is unusual—or too complex—for us to handle.

Office Equipment: We can pack, ship, assemble and install all types of business equipment — even entire office setups.

FF&E Services: We offer planning, shipping, and installation services for renovations, refurbishments, and relocations.

Oversized and Heavy Freight: Oversized equipment, medical devices, and even hazardous freight — we do it all.

Trust the Jones Act Experts

Approved has worked side-by-side with business owners and executives to design efficient freight solutions for Jones Act destinations since 1991. We know what it takes to tailor a package that meets your needs, hits your deadlines, and boosts your bottom line. Get started with a complimentary consultation with one of our Puerto Rico freight experts.

On-the-Ground Resources for Superior Service from Start to Finish

You can count on our on-the-ground solutions in Puerto Rico to execute a full range of logistics solutions with the same commitment to detail, precision, and customer service that have long been the Approved way of doing business, with:

  • A Local Trucking Fleet in Every Zone, Every Day: We do pickups and deliveries on your schedule to keep your supply chain moving efficiently. We also offer inside delivery and white glove services, as needed.
  • Warehousing & Storage Solutions: Storing inventory in Puerto Rico isn’t the most cost-effective solution. We have budget-friendly warehousing solutions in Florida and Jacksonville to allow you to restock quickly. This also saves on-island warehousing and storage costs.
  • Confidence in How Your Cargo Is Handled: We’re proud to have one of the industry’s lowest damage and claim rates.
warehouse manager driving forklift
puerto rico freight container flag

Help With Puerto Rico Hacienda

Shipments arriving to Puerto Rico must be paid for and cleared by the Puerto Rico Department of Treasury / el Departamento de Hacienda de Puerto Rico (usually just referred to as “Hacienda”) before they can be delivered.


If you’re new to doing business in Puerto Rico, we’ll show you how to get started. We’ll also help you prepare your paperwork to minimize any potential delays.


By and large, it’s a fairly straightforward process to establish an account with the online payment system, SURI (Sistema Unificado de Rentas Internas). Timely payments mean timely release of your goods.


Every now and again, a shipper will encounter a challenge with Hacienda. We have access to a network of couriers and runners who can get corrected paperwork to the nearest office to expedite clearance.

Get started with a complimentary expert consultation


FAQ About Puerto Rico Freight

Absolutely! Freight makes its final journey to the island of Puerto Rico via one of two shipping modes: ocean freight or air freight.

When it comes to Puerto Rico ocean freight, we offer two solutions:

  • Less-than-Container (LCL) Shipments/Consolidations
  • Full Container Load (FCL) Shipments

We can pick up Puerto Rico-bound ocean freight anywhere in the continental We can also move international freight directly to and from Puerto Rico.


Air freight headed for Puerto Rico comes from all over the world. In most cases, air freight is your best bet for time-sensitive shipments. For more information on sending air cargo to or from Puerto Rico, check out Approved’s air freight services.

Port-to-port transit time for a container to San Juan, Puerto Rico can take as little as three days from Jacksonville, Florida. From Miami, it usually takes around four days.


We can pick up freight anywhere in the continental U.S. and move it to Puerto Rico for you. Below, you’ll find a few sample transit times to San Juan:

Approximate Transit Time to San Juan

  • Jacksonville, FL –  3 days
  • Miami, FL  – 4 days
  • New York, NY  – 7 days
  • Chicago, IL  – 10 days
  • Los Angeles, CA –  18 days

Keep in mind that transit time is simply the time it takes a boat to go from one port to another. Every steamship line has a cut-off for receiving freight, which is a few days prior to the actual sail date.


Additionally, it can take a few days for freight to be unloaded and delivered after freight is made available at the port.


To get a full picture of how long it will take your container to get to Puerto Rico, you’ll need to add a few days on either end of the transit time.


Reach out to us, and we’ll get you a precise timeline for your shipment.

We have access to multiple sailings weekly. This offers you maximum flexibility for moving cargo quickly between the continental U.S. and Puerto Rico. We’ll work with you to establish a schedule that meets your needs.


or call us at (866) 935-6201.





We use the following types of containers for shipments to Puerto Rico:

  • 20’ standard containers
  • 40’ standard and high cube containers
  • 45’ high cube containers
  • 53’ high-cube containers


We also ship flat-rack containers to accommodate large and heavy items, such as machinery and construction materials. Finally, if you have a non-containerized shipment, we can also assist. Just ask, and we’ll help you find a solution.

The final cost to ship a 20-foot container to Puerto Rico will depend on a couple of factors, including:


  • What you’re shipping: its weight, measurements, and freight class
  • The origin: where you want to ship it
  • The destination: where you want to ship it to


Once we have gathered all of that information, we’ll help you figure out the best shipping method for Puerto Rico and how much it will cost. We’ll put together a comprehensive quote so you can understand exactly what it will cost to ship your freight to Puerto Rico.

Goods arriving in Puerto Rico are subject to an excise tax that’s specific to the commodity you’re importing. This excise tax is payable through SURI, the online portal for Hacienda (the Puerto Rico Department of Treasury / el Departamento de Hacienda de Puerto Rico).


Outside of the excise tax, you won’t pay customs duties on goods moving between the U.S. mainland and Puerto Rico.

If you’re sending freight, ocean freight will usually be the cheapest shipping option. If you’re sending a small parcel, USPS is often the cheapest option. UPS, FedEx, and DHL all ship to Puerto Rico, though, so you may want to price out your package with them as well to locate the absolute best rate.

Because Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, shipping between the island and the continental U.S. is not considered international. Additionally:


  • Shipments from Puerto Rico to other U.S. locations are not inspected by U.S. customs, nor subject to customs duties and fees.
  • Shipments from U.S. locations to Puerto Rico are not inspected by U.S. customs. However, they are subject to excise taxes paid directly to Hacienda (the Puerto Rico Department of Treasury / el Departamento de Hacienda de Puerto Rico).

Because it’s a U.S. territory, the USPS considers mail to and from Puerto Rico domestic. Additionally, cargo moving between other U.S. locations and Puerto Rico is also considered domestic.

  • Domestic shipments to and from other U.S. destinations do not go through U.S. customs. However, cargo arriving in Puerto Rico is processed by Hacienda (the Puerto Rico Department of Treasury / el Departamento de Hacienda de Puerto Rico), which collects an excise tax on incoming items.


  • International shipments arriving in Puerto Rico must first clear U.S. Customs. Then, they’ll be subject to excise tax and clearance by Hacienda.

If arriving from another U.S. destination, shipments to Puerto Rico are not considered exports.

For domestic shipments, you will need to provide documentation in order to get your shipment cleared by Hacienda. In general, this includes items such as a standard bill of lading, a commercial invoice, and an Electronic Export Filing (EEI) if the declared value of any commodity shipped exceeds $2,500.


Our Puerto Rico freight experts can help you prepare this documentation for your shipment.

Congress passed the Merchant Marine Act of 1920—which includes the section known as the Jones Act—in response to German attacks on the U.S. fleet during World War I. 


The Jones Act restricts ocean transportation of cargo between U.S. ports to U.S.-built, -owned, and -operated vessels. The Act was designed to promote continued investment in American shipbuilding and shipping lines. It was also designed to ensure a robust U.S. fleet in case of future global conflict.


Finally, the Jones Act also protects the United States in case of international disputes. By maintaining its own fleet, the U.S. can remain independent of hostile nations, who might, for example, refuse to deliver goods to U.S. ports or attempt to cut off supplies.


Read more about the pros and cons of the Jones Act.


If you’re shipping goods to a Jones Act destination like Puerto Rico, there can be some complexities involved. Choosing a company who has significant familiarity with Jones Act destinations can help you navigate with greater ease.


Approved has been moving freight in Jones Act lanes since 1991. Feel free to reach out to one of our experts if you have questions about how the Jones Act might affect your next shipment.

If you’re considering doing business in Puerto Rico, the island has plenty to recommend it, including:

  • A solid infrastructure to support business
  • A highly skilled labor force
  • Legal and structural similarities to the continental U.S.
  • Active government and investment for new businesses
  • Tax benefits for bonafide relocation.


To learn more, check out our article on expanding your business to Puerto Rico.

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