Thailand-France freight: complete guide 2024

International Freight Forwarder

Fret France - Thaïlande

Have you ever been curious about how to optimize your shipments between Thailand and France? Freight between these two countries plays an undeniable role in international trade. 

This article aims to provide comprehensive and accurate information on all logistical, economic, and regulatory aspects of Thailand-France freight. Understanding these elements is essential for successful international transport operations.

Let's explore the different facets of freight between Thailand and France together.

  • The main ports in Thailand and the advantages of using Thai ports.
  • The different transport options for Thailand-France freight.

The different transport options for Thailand-France freight

Freight between Thailand and France can be carried out mainly via two transport options: sea freight and air freight. Each method offers specific advantages in terms of cost, speed, and capacity, thus meeting the diverse logistical needs of businesses.

Sea freight Thailand-France

Sea freight is often preferred for its cost advantage and capacity to transport large quantities of goods. Container ships are most commonly used, traversing main maritime routes such as those passing through the Suez Canal. 

The main departure ports include Bangkok and Laem Chabang in Thailand, with destinations in France such as Le Havre and Marseille.


  • Lower cost per ton transported
  • Capacity to transport large volumes


  • Longer transit time
  • Dependency on weather conditions

A Thai textile company uses sea freight to ship its products to France, thus reducing its logistics costs by 30%. For more details, check our Sea Freight in Thailand page..

Air freight Thailand-France

Air freight is ideal for goods requiring fast and secure delivery. Using cargo planes and freight compartments of passenger planes, this transport mode mainly connects Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi) and Paris (Charles de Gaulle) airports.


  • Fast delivery
  • Increased security for goods


  • Higher cost
  • Limited loading capacity

Air freight allowed us to reduce our delivery time to only two days, ensuring optimal customer satisfaction

explains Mr. Nguyen, logistics director of an electronics company.

For more information, visit our Air Freight Thailand page..

Freight costs between France and Thailand

The freight cost between France and Thailand can vary significantly depending on several factors, including the type of freight (sea or air), distance, desired delivery time, type of goods, value of goods, and additional required services. 

Here is an overview of the elements that influence the cost:

  1. Type de fret : Sea freight is generally cheaper than air freight but takes longer.
  2. Distance and route : Direct routes can be more expensive than routes with multiple stops.
  3. Delivery time : Shorter delivery times are often more expensive.
  4. Type and value of goods : Bulky, heavy, or high-value goods may incur additional fees for insurance and special handling.
  5. Additional services : Specialized packaging, advanced tracking, and customs clearance services can increase the total cost.

Here is a cost estimate table for different freight options:

Type of FreightEstimated DurationCost (per kg)Total Cost (100 kg)
Standard sea freight4–6 weeks1-2 €100-200 €
Express sea freight2–3 weeks3-4 €300-400 €
Standard air freight3–5 days8-10 €800-1000 €
Express air freight1–2 days12-15 €1200-1500 €

These costs are estimates and can vary depending on the specific conditions of each shipment. To get an accurate and personalized quote, we recommend contacting a specialized freight forwarder or requesting a quote.

By understanding these factors and obtaining accurate quotes, you can better plan and manage your international transport operations between France and Thailand. 

Import-export between Thailand and France

Trade between Thailand and France involves a series of specific import and export procedures, requiring various documents and steps to ensure compliance with international and local regulations. Here is our detailed guide to the procedures to follow:

Import procedures in France

  1. Importer registration : Before being able to import, companies must register with the French customs authorities. This process includes obtaining an EORI (Economic Operator Registration and Identification) number.
  2. Necessary documents :
    • Commercial Invoice : Provides details about the goods, including their value and terms of sale.
    • Packing List : Details the content of each package to facilitate customs inspections.
    • Certificate of Origin (CO) : Indicates the country of origin of the goods, which can affect customs duties.
    • Bill of lading or air waybill : Transport document issued by the carrier.
    • Customs declaration : Submitted upon arrival of the goods, it describes the imported goods and calculates applicable customs duties.
  3. Customs clearance : Goods are inspected by French customs authorities to ensure they comply with current regulations. Customs duties and VAT are calculated and must be paid before the goods can be released.
  4. Final delivery : Once customs formalities are completed, the goods can be delivered to their final destination.

Export procedures from Thailand

  1. Exporter registration : Thai companies must register with the Ministry of Commerce to obtain an export license.
  2. Necessary documents :
    • Commercial Invoice : Provides information about the goods, their value, and terms of sale.
    • Packing List : Details the content of each package.
    • Certificate of Origin (CO) : Issued by the Thai Chamber of Commerce.
    • Bill of lading or air waybill : Issued by the carrier.
    • Export declaration : Submitted to the Thai customs authorities, it describes the exported goods.
  3. Inspection and customs clearance : Goods are inspected by Thai customs to ensure they comply with regulations. Once formalities are completed, the goods can leave the country.
  4. Transport : The goods are then transported to France by sea or air.

Claire Moreau, an international trade expert, explains:

Success in import-export between Thailand and France lies in the meticulous preparation of documents and understanding the customs regulations of both countries

Customs duties between Thailand and France

The applicable customs duties on goods transported between Thailand and France are determined by several factors, including the nature of the products, their value, and current trade agreements. 

Understanding these duties is essential for properly planning and budgeting your international transport operations.

How are customs duties calculated?

  1. Customs value : The basis for calculating customs duties is the customs value of the goods. This includes the cost of the goods, transport costs to the import border, and insurance. In France, this value is often called the CIF (Cost, Insurance, Freight) value.
  2. Tariff classification : Each type of product is classified under a specific tariff code, called an HS (Harmonized System) code. This code determines the applicable duty rate. For example, clothing may have a different duty rate than electronic equipment.
  3. Origine des marchandises : Trade agreements between countries can affect customs duties. For example, products benefiting from preferential agreements may be subject to reduced or exempt duty rates.
  4. TVA à l’importation : In addition to customs duties, VAT (Value Added Tax) is applied to the customs value of the goods plus customs duties. In France, the standard VAT rate is 20%.

Dr. Michel Laurent, a customs tax expert, explains:

It is crucial for importers to understand tariff classifications and current trade agreements to optimize costs. Misclassification can lead to significant additional costs.

To minimize errors and unexpected costs, it is recommended to collaborate with logistics experts and specialized freight forwarders who can provide accurate advice and help manage customs formalities.

Finding a freight forwarder in Thailand

Finding a reliable freight forwarder in Thailand is essential to ensure the smooth running of your international transport operations. Here are some practical tips for choosing the right logistics partner and the selection criteria to consider.

Practical tips for choosing a reliable freight forwarder

  1. Experience and expertise : Look for a forwarder with solid experience in transport between Thailand and France. Check their expertise in the type of freight you are shipping, whether sea or air freight.
  2. Network and coverage : A good forwarder should have an extensive network and global coverage to ensure efficient management of your shipments. This includes partnerships with airlines, shipping companies, and customs agents.
  3. Offered services : Make sure the forwarder offers a full range of services, including packaging, warehousing, customs clearance, and shipment tracking. The more services they offer, the better they can manage the complex aspects of your logistics.
  4. Reputation and customer reviews : Consult reviews and testimonials from other companies that have worked with the forwarder. A good reputation is often a reliable indicator of service quality.
  5. Cost transparency : A reliable forwarder should provide clear and transparent quotes without hidden fees. Ask for detailed explanations of the costs associated with your shipments.
  6. Customer service : Responsiveness and quality of customer service are crucial. Make sure the forwarder is easily reachable and capable of quickly resolving potential issues.

Worldgistic: quality service

Worldgistic offers high-quality freight forwarding services for shipments between Thailand and France.

Take advantage of our limited-time special offer, designed for customers seeking reliable and efficient logistics solutions. We stand out for our expertise and commitment to customer satisfaction.

Working with Worldgistic has transformed our supply chain. Their team is responsive, and their extensive network has reduced our delivery times

explains Mr. Dupont, logistics director at GlobalTech.

To learn more about our freight forwarding services and benefit from our special offer, contact us today and find out how we can optimize your transport operations between Thailand and France.

Regulations and compliance

Navigating customs and compliance regulations for freight between Thailand and France can be complex. Here is a guide to help you understand the main requirements and how to ensure your shipments comply with these rules.

Main customs regulations

  1. Union Customs Code (UCC) : This code governs customs procedures in France and throughout the EU. It defines rules for importing, exporting, transiting, and storing goods.
  2. Thai customs regulations : In Thailand, customs are managed by the Thai Customs Department, which imposes strict rules on the import and export of goods, including customs tariffs and import licenses.

How to ensure shipment compliance

  1. Knowing documentary requirements : Ensure all necessary documents are ready and correctly filled out, including:
    • Commercial Invoice
    • Packing List
    • Certificate of Origin (CO)
    • Bill of lading or air waybill
    • Customs declaration
  2. Correct classification of goods : Use the appropriate HS code for your products to determine applicable customs duties and ensure correct classification.
  3. Checking restrictions and licenses : Some products may require specific licenses or be subject to restrictions. For example, exporting certain electronic or chemical products may require an export license.
  4. Using an experienced forwarder : Collaborating with an experienced forwarder can facilitate compliance with customs regulations and ensure your shipments comply. They can offer valuable advice and manage customs formalities for you.

A Thai company exporting textiles to France encountered compliance issues due to incorrect product classification and incomplete documents. By contacting our specialists, they were able to correct the errors, ensure correct classification according to the HS code, and provide the necessary documents, thus reducing delays and additional fees.

For smooth and compliant logistics operations

By reading this article, you have gained a comprehensive understanding of the logistical, economic, and regulatory aspects of freight between Thailand and France. You are now better prepared to manage your international transport operations, optimizing costs and ensuring compliance with the customs regulations of both countries.

Explore our detailed articles on the advantages and disadvantages of each option to make an informed decision. By staying informed and using the available resources, you can ensure full compliance and optimize your international business operations. For personalized advice and tailored packaging solutions, contact our packaging experts today.


Worldgistic is the number one international freight forwarder in Southeast Asia and Europe. With over 15 years of experience and a team of qualified experts, choose Worldgistic!

Our destinations


Any question? Contact us