Full Steam Ahead, Don’t Let Ocean Costs Detain You

Full Steam Ahead, Don’t Let Ocean Costs Detain You

With rising ocean and detention costs, controls and analysis are more important than ever to protect profitability.


With ocean shipping and detention charges increasing exponentially, better control and in-depth analysis of these charges is a necessity and simultaneously a challenge.

Complicating the issue, detailed data and resources to analyze detention and other ocean accessorials must be ascertained and allocated to facilitate a thorough review of these growing costs. Without a transportation post audit in place, companies do not possess the controls nor the time to better manage carrier overbillings and overpayments, regardless of source, nor do they have the business intelligence and processes to ascertain refunds and correct these recurring errors.

Shipping disruptions that arose during the pandemic made the situation even worse.

Interestingly, the top five most expensive global ports for detention and demurrage fees on cargo containers are all in the United States, where such charges have steadily increased in recent years. Even with the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 in place, overbillings can still be significant.


Many of Trans Audit’s clients face similar challenges and have turned to Trans Audit for post payment transportation expense recovery services to analyze global transportation expenses and recoup overbillings and overpayments.

One example, a Fortune 200 multinational automotive manufacturing and supply company, was the beneficiary of these services. Never working with a post audit provider in the past, this world renowned company teamed up with Trans Audit, the world’s largest and most successful global transportation post payment audit specialist.

In its 40-plus year history, Trans Audit has performed audits for hundreds of Fortune and Global 1000 corporations. Trans Audit’s global audit capabilities address all modes of transportation and associated charges, providing a ubiquitous solution.

Trans Audit’s approach synthesizes a holistic, comprehensive audit for 1) payment-related errors, such as payment ownership, accuracy, currency, duplicates, and many others, 2) contractual compliance, i.e. discounts, rates and accessorial charges including detention and demurrage, as well as the plethora of other accessorial charges, and 3) logistical analysis, taking the audit beyond what most internal or other outsourced audits offer.

Trans Audit’s logistical analysis scrutinizes shipping and payment information to ensure that not only was a charge billed according to the shipper’s contract, but that the charge was truly applicable and recurring error trends are identified.


Trans Audit’s subject matter modal experts (SMMEs) filed over $4,000,000 in claims and recovered over $3,000,000 in one year for this client. Recoveries primarily resulted from ocean detention, but also included payment, rate, and other accessorial charge errors.

Trans Audit provided pertinent claim details and guidance to assist the client with corrective actions via TransPortal+, driven by Microsoft Power BI. Trans Audit’s clients benefit from its compelling advantages in terms of intuitive and interactive dashboards and vital metrics in real time in one place.

The intelligence provided by Trans Audit has enabled this client to modify processes, and better control and reduce its detention costs, providing value far above and beyond the refunds themselves. This approach demonstrates Trans Audit’s belief that a post audit should deliver more than just monetary benefits, and more importantly, provide continuous improvement insight into its clients’ payment processes and supplier relations. www.transaudit.com