MSC adds instant quote function for online cargo bookings


MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company has upgraded its e-business platform myMSC with the addition of a new online Instant Quote function that it expects will significantly boost the number of the container shipping group’s online bookings.

Currently, the majority of MSC’s bookings are carried out offline, and it can take some time to complete a booking, the carrier acknowledged, but it has now joined the ranks of container lines that offer instant quoting services. It said customers wishing to use the new tool will be able to quickly and easily get real-time shipping rates for container bookings.

“Using Instant Quote, customers can generate an online quote in less than a minute, with just a few simple clicks, 24/7 online,” the line said. “They then have the option to instantly complete the booking with the generated quote on myMSC.

“Alternatively, they can save the quote or forward it to multiple contacts for booking at a later stage. The automated quote generation also reduces room for human error, further improving the efficiency of the process.”

The Instant Quote function is currently only available for shipping trade routes from North America to Europe and from Asia to Europe, with plans for the addition of more trades over the course of 2020.

Accelerated digitalisation due to COVID-19

MSC’s chief digital and information officer André Simha commented: “The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the trend towards digitalisation within the industry and the importance of engaging customers through multiple platforms, including through e-business. As such, this upgrade of myMSC is a clear illustration of our continuing efforts to invest in digital business transformation with the aim to improve efficiency and transparency, and to give our customers more options.” 

MSC said the launch of instant quote “is expected to significantly boost the number of MSC’s online bookings and further unlock the value of myMSC as an e-business platform for customers”.

Customers will first need to login to or to sign up for an account if they do not have one yet. By selecting the starting and ending points of the shipment and the equipment size, customers can see the options for shipping rates.

Details such as the shipping window, estimated transit time, routing and the charges included in the quotation will be clearly displayed.

The tool can be used for bookings of standard-sized (20 and 40 feet) and High Cube (40 and 45 feet) dry containers. For locations where intermodal services are available, customers can opt for end-to-end rates from the origin to destination.

MSC said it had “has ensured a seamless integration of the Instant Quote function into myMSC, and a smooth overall user experience for customers. This new function adds on to the list of e-business tools available in myMSC, such as ability to do e-bookings, retrieval of documents such as booking confirmations and arrival notices, oversight of bookings via a dashboard, creation and submission of Shipping Instructions, submission of Verified Gross Mass (VGM), tracking of shipments and receiving of notifications. “