International Freight Forwarder and Customs Broker Based in China

Shipping from China to Spain: Sea, Air & Rail freight rates | 2022

If you’re looking to import goods and consignments from China to Spain, then we’ll help you understand the process and choose the right option for you as well as getting the best price.

What are the main options for shipping from China to Spain?


Express2-3 business days, or 3-6 calendar days
Airfreight8 days
Rail freight28-35 days
Sea freight20-50 days

Professional freight forwarders provide DDP shipping via air, rail, sea or truck freight.
These services can deliver direct to your door or to your business or Amazon FBA warehouse.
The timeframe is 10-15 days for air freight, 20-25 days for truck freight, 30-35 days for sea shipping & 30-35 days for rail freight.

Door to Door shipping from China to Spain


DDP air freight from China to Spain


  • First Leg: Air freight
  • Shipping Type: LCL (default)
  • Shipping Time: 10-15 days
  • Export Declaration: Your factory may declare themselves as exporter.
  • VAT & EORI: We use the VAT and EORI of our business partners as importers for import declarations.
  • Destination: Business and Private addresses, or Amazon FBA warehouse.


DDP rail freight from China to Spain


  • First Leg: Rail freight
  • Shipping Type: LCL (default)
  • Shipping Time: 30-35 days
  • Export Declaration: If the total weight is more than 100kg, your factory could declare themselves as the exporter.
  • VAT & EORI: We use the VAT and EORI of our business partners as importers for import declarations.
  • Destination: Business and Private addresses, or Amazon FBA warehouse.


DDP sea shipping from China to Spain


  • First Leg: Sea shipping
  • Shipping Type: LCL (default)
  • Shipping Time: 30-35 days
  • Export Declaration: Your factory may declare themselves as the exporter.
  • VAT & EORI: We use the VAT and EORI of our business partners as importers for import declarations.
  • Destination: Business and Private addresses, or Amazon FBA warehouse.


DDP truck freight from China to Spain


  • First Leg: Truck freight
  • Shipping Type: LCL (default)
  • Shipping Time: 20-25 days
  • Export Declaration: Your factory may declare themselves as the exporter.
  • VAT & EORI:We use the VAT and EORI of our business partners as importers for import declarations.
  • Destination: Business and Private addresses, or Amazon FBA warehouse.


Item Rules


  • We don’t accept items that break IP rights.
  • We don’t accept illegal and controlled substances and items such as drugs, cigaretes, alcohol and arms.
  • Packaging and SCU labels must have “Made in China” marks and on the outer carton.
  • Outer packaging/cartons must be sturdy and new and not have misleading labels or info.
  • Outer cartons should be sealed with clear tape, not coloured tapes.
  • The maximum length should be 120cm at the longest side and 75cm at the second longest side. Maximum size in CM: (Width + Height)*2 + Length<300.


Weight Prices


  • The minimum weight charge is 10KG for Air, 13kg for Rail, 12KG for sea and 12KG for Truck.
  • Waybill minimum charges are 11KG for Air, 13Kg for Rail, 21kg for Sea and 21 KG for Truck.
  • The maximum weight for one carton is 30kg.


Amazon FBA Items Requirements


  • Each item needs to have a unique FNSKU label.
  • Two Amazon shipment labels must be attached to each outer carton, one on the front and one on the back.using clear tape or stickers.


Final Delivery


  • Door to door.
  • By UPS or DHL.


Shipping from China to Spain by container


What’s the cheapest way to ship?

There are many different ways to ship from China to Spain.
Ocean Sea freight may be the cheapest, although it is also the slowest, so you need to weigh up your needs when deciding.

Port of LoadingPort of ArrivalTransit Time (days)
ChinaSpain1-3days by air
ChinaSpain7-10days by railway

What’s the difference between LCL and FCL Sea shipping?

Ocean transport involves transport via containers, and importers can choose whether to import by renting a container solely for their use (FCL) or sharing container space with others (LCL).

These containers can also be transported from the port onto railways, making them multimodal methods of freight transportation.

Less than Container Load (LCL): This is suitable for small quantities of goods and when air freight is too expensive.

Because the quantity is less than a container, it will cost less than full container shipping.

However, there might be a small additional time to wait LCL delivery involves the consolidation (packing) and deconsolidation (unpack) of your goods from the rest of the container items prior to departure and after arrival.

Full Container Load (FCL): As the name suggests, this method of shipping uses the full shipping container and is thus suitable for loads that are at least that quantity.

If your individual quantities are less than the container, you could LCL or employ a strategy of bundling multiple orders into one container. Flat-rate pricing makes FCL shipping a good deal.

When you’re choosing between LCL and FCL, some points to consider are:

  • Are you ok with your goods sharing a container with other goods from a different company?
  • How many pallets is your order? If it’s over 6 pallets, you should compare the prices of FCL and LCL, as getting a full container may be a better deal, even if you can’t fill it completely.
  • Exporters should know that there are two types of pallets: Standard (1.2m/47 ¼” X 1m/39 3⁄8”) and Euro (1.2m/47 ¼” X .8m/31 ½”). It‘s important to know what pallets you will be using and whether you can stack your cargo.
  • How important is time? FCL will be a bit quicker.
  • Can your business create 12 pallets of orders, enough to fill a container in a timeframe that makes sense to ship them together?
  • Do you wish to seal the container throughout the transportation process? FCL is your choice.


How Long Does It Take to Ship Cargo by Sea From China to Spain?

It’s impossible to have an exact timeframe for sea shipping as it depends on the port of departure and arrival.

Shenzhen to Barcelona may take around 26 days, whereas Shanghai to Valencia may take around 35 days and Guangzhou to Bilbao 41 days. As you can see, the timeframe is around 25-50 days.


How Long Does It Take to Ship via Air From China to Spain?

On average, you can expect your air freight to take around 8 days between China and Spain.

This applies to all indirect and direct flights, although consignments between Shanghai and Barcelona can often run a little quicker, at an average of 6 days.


What do I need to know about Customs documentation?

Our team at SINO shipping will guide you through the often arduous process of customs clearance.

For shipping from China to Spain you will need: Commercial Invoice, Packing List, Certificate of Origin, Letter of Credit or other payment terms (depends on the contract between the parties involved), Bill of Lading.


What Ports in China ship to Spain?

Knowing the ports in China that can deliver to Spain will be helpful in calculating your shipment’s journey time and price.

Currently, the most important ports (and their UN/Locode) in China that ship to Spain are Xiamen (CNXMN), Shantou (CNSWA), Ningbo-Zhousan (CNNGB), Lianyungang (CNLYG), Wuhu (CNWHI).

Other viable ports include Tianjin, Wuhan, Chongqing, Shanghai, Qinzhou, Zhuhai, Zhongshan, Guangzhou, Qingdao, Shenzhen and Dalian.


What ports do good from China arrive in Spain?

The important Spanish ports that can receive goods from Spain include: Algeciras (ESALG), Bilbao (ESBIO), Barcelona (ESBCN), Valencia (ESVLC), and Vigo, (ESVGO).


Cargo Ports of Origin in China



Port Facts:

  • Served by a wide range of ocean carriers, which steam freight to around 50 countries.
  • There are nine container terminals in the port.
  • Comprises 12 areas: situated in the Jiulongjiang River estuary, the coastline of mainland China opposite Xiamen Island, and on the island itself.

Owned By: Xiamen Port Authority.
Annual Container Volume: >10 million TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • Natural river port opening into the South China Sea.
  • Serves a vital role as a gateway to the manufacturing-centric Guangdong Province.
  • The only sizable port in the Eastern part of Guangdong.
  • Has been earmarked for expansion due to an increase in imports and exports.

Owned By: Shantou Port Affairs Bureau.
Annual Container Volume: >1.25 million TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • Boasts one of the most efficient container terminals anywhere in the world.
  • Known for fast vessel loading and unloading.
  • Popular choice with shippers wishing to minimize transit times between China and Spain.
  • High-quality road and rail freight interchanges at the facility.
  • Great alternative to the nearby port of Shanghai.

Owned By: Ningbo Zhoushan Port Co., Ltd.
Annual Container Volume: >26 million TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • One of China’s ten most important ports.
  • Ranking among the top 30 ports globally.
  • Situated in the north of Jiangsu Province, near the mouth of the Qianqwei River.
  • Located in one of the fourteen cities that opened up to foreign trade and investment, spurring growth in the volume of import and exports.

Owned By: Lianyungang Port Group Co. Ltd.
Annual Container Volume: >4.7 million TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • Small port by Chinese standards, with an annual throughput of half a million TEUs.
  • Fifth largest port along the Yangtze River.
  • Useful export gateway if your supplier is based in Anhui Province or its surroundings.

Owned By: Wuhu Port Authority.
Annual Container Volume: >500,000 TEUs.




As well as the five ports described above, Shipa Freight can also dispatch your freight from China via the following container gateways:

  • Tianjin
  • Wuhan
  • Chongqing
  • Shanghai
  • Qinzhou
  • Zhuhai
  • Zhongshan
  • Guangzhou
  • Qingdao
  • Shenzhen
  • Dalian


Cargo Ports of Arrival in Spain



Port Facts:

  • The port area is scattered around the Bay of Gibraltar.
  • Spain’s second most important port, after Valencia, and the third-busiest in the Mediterranean.
  • Known for its high container-handling efficiency.
  • Serves around 3,000 container vessels per year.

Owned By: Autoridad Portuaria de la Bahia de Algeciras.
Annual Container Volume: >4.5 million TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • Located on Spain’s north coast.
  • One of the five ports around the coast of Spain to which you can ship your imports from China.
  • Not a large port, but ideal for containerized freight bound for cities such as Burgos, Leon, Zaragoza, and even the Spanish capital, Madrid.

Owned By: Port of Bilbao Authority.
Annual Container Volume: >500,000 TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • Ninth-largest container gateway in Europe, and the third-largest in Spain.
  • Ideal if your Spanish markets lie in the northeast of the country.
  • Offers connections to the region of Catalonia and further into Spain’s hinterland.
  • Currently in the process of enlargement.

Owned By: Puertos Del Estado.
Annual Container Volume: >3 million TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • 28th-busiest container port in the world and number five in Europe.
  • Largest port in Spain and the entire Mediterranean basin.
  • Has a storage area of 1.2 square kilometers and a total quay length of 12 kilometers.

Owned By: Port Authority of Valencia.
Annual Container Volume: >5 million TEUs.



Port Facts:

  • Lies on Spain’s short west coast, close to the border with Portugal.
  • Best known as one of the world’s premier fishing ports.
  • Handles a steady throughput of cargo, much of it containerized.
  • Covers an area of 14,000 hectares.
  • Smallest of the five Spanish ports.

Owned By: Autoridad Portuaria de Vigo.
Annual Container Volume: >200,000 TEUs.


Air Freight Cargo from China to Spain


Flying Your Freight: Airport Guide

If you’re choosing air freight, it can help to know the key airports that your goods will be flying out of.

Some of the most important Chinese Airports and their IATA codes are: Shenzhen (SZX), Guangzhou (CAN), Beijing Capital (PEK), Chengdu (CTU), Shanghai Pudong (PVG).

Other viable airports that may do indirect transport to Spain include: Qingdao, Wuhan, Xiamen, Beijing, Zhengzhou, and Shanghai Hongqiao.


Airports of Arrival in Spain

The key airports in Spain for receiving your goods are Barcelona (BCN), Bilbao, (BIO), and Madrid (MAD).


Train Railway Freight From China to Spain:


Rail freight by train is becoming a popular ‘middle ground’ between air and sea freight as it’s cheaper than shipping by air, but faster than sea, meaning it’s useful for businesses that need to refresh their inventories regularly.

It’s also a versatile method of shipping and can handle more bulky goods as well as those that require a bit more care and handling. It may not be suitable for very high value items though.

While it can be simple, it should be noted that many rail services from China to Europe make Germany their direct destination, so if your package is going through Germany, you may need to make additional plans for forwarding it on to Spain.

Just like with sea shipping, rail freight comes with Full Container Load (FCL) and Less-than-Container Load (LCL) options.

With FCL, you rent a full container solely for your company’s goods, and with LCL you share with other companies.

FCL can be cost effective even if you’re not filling the whole container, but a majority of it.

If, on the other hand, you’re transferring a small amount, then LCL might make more sense.


What items are prohibited to be shipped by Rail Freight?

liquids, powders, arms, knives, weapons and other hazardous items are not allowed to be transported by Rail.


What Railways routes run from China to Europe and Spain?

  • Wuhan-Europe
  • Chongqing-Europe
  • Suzhou-Europe
  • Zhengzhou-Europe
  • Yiwu-Madrid

The most direct shipping route via rail is the Yiwu to Madrid service, which is convenient as it doesn’t require re-routing in Germany.


What’s the best freight method for me?

Your choice of freight comes down to a lot of factors, time, cost and size of shipment being among the most important.

If you’re still unsure about what’s right for you, then get in contact with us as SINO Shipping and we’ll do our best to create a logistics plan that works for your needs.


What documents do I need for shipping from China to Spain?

Getting your documents in order is vital to making the process of shipping run smoothly.

While the list below may seem daunting, we’ll do our best to make the process run without any problems and we’ll take care of as much as we can from our end.

  • Single Administrative Document. This is the declaration document that you write to customs.
  • Bill of lading, Entry summary declaration
  • Certificates of Origin
  • CMR
  • Packing list
  • CIM consignment note
  • Certificate of shipment
  • Invoice


What import taxes and duties do I have to pay at Spanish customs?

VAT will depend on your item. Some items such as electronics are duty free, while others may have a VAT charge of 10-21%.

Do I need insurance?

We highly recommend that you purchase insurance for your shipping. This will give you peace of mind and we’ll be happy to provide this service for you.


When do I need to pay?

You need to pay before the goods ship.


Which payment methods do you accept?

T/T transfer
Western Union


Acerca de SINO

SINO Shipping es una empresa transitaria internacional de confianza con más de 35 años de experiencia, que ofrece una gama completa de servicios de logística y transporte. Con una fuerte presencia en China y un compromiso con la eficiencia, la fiabilidad y la satisfacción del cliente, SINO Shipping garantiza soluciones logísticas rentables y sin estrés para empresas de todo el mundo.

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