The world is changing rapidly all around us and production companies all over the world are constantly facing the changing realities of the shifting political landscape. Today, I was reading an article about the potential ramifications on the touring business because of the UK withdrawal from the European Union. At the same time Canada and Mexico are tightening documentation requirements on US companies doing business in their countries in response to US customs cracking down on tours coming into the US.
Bringing equipment from one country into another for a short period of time isn’t difficult if you plan and communicate with that country’s authorities. If your vehicles show up at the border with an incomplete manifest of equipment, you could be denied entry which could jeopardize your event.
Navigator Systems has always made managing carnet or manifest information simple by including dimensions, country of origin, weights and serial numbers in the HireTrack NX System. Some companies will prep and dispatch their equipment with case organization information and then present their documentation at the border. Other companies will need to reserve specific pieces of equipment for the dates of the event to prevent that equipment from being sent out to other orders, which would create a nightmare for crossing the border if it’s found that the equipment in your truck is NOT the equipment you specified to customs.
This process is done using a Carnet or Shipping Manifest. A carnet is an international shipping document that allows you to leave your home country, enter another for production purposes and come home having exported and imported your equipment as often as you like without the need to pay import duty or tax. It lists all items of equipment along with serial numbers and distinguishing marks. Customs officials at the port of entry will temporarily import the items using an importation voucher. A corresponding exportation voucher will be used as the items leave the country thus proving that they have not been permanently imported into the country and then subject to duties and tax. Customs officials won’t be hurried and in some cases will inspect the serial numbers of every single piece of kit. A Carnet document can be obtained from your local Chamber of Commerce or from specialist shipping companies.
The carnet feature in HireTrack NX allows you to select in advance which particular pieces of equipment will be utilized on your overseas job. This function also allows you to figure out how the equipment should be packed and allocate that equipment directly into a specific cases or trunks. This is usually done well in advance of the warehouse starting to prep the equipment. In other words, it allows you to determine the best way to manage the logistics involved in doing productions in other countries.
When building a carnet, the system will display a list of barcode which will be available during the time period of the job. Equipment that is reserved on to a carnet can still be used on other jobs between now and the start of the carnet job shipping – HireTrack NX will do all the necessary calculations to make sure that all equipment is returned in advance of the carnet job. If the equipment list changes after the carnet has been produced, HireTrack will then warn you that a new set of carnet paperwork is required. If a conflicting job attempts to use an item reserved for a carnet, the user will receive a warning indicating that this particular piece of equipment is not available for their job.
Managing your equipment moving across borders can be as complicated as you make it. Today’s shifting political realities will only make this process more difficult rather than easier. Your software should make managing the logistics of your equipment painless rather than exhausting!