shipping to angola

The Simplified Process of Shipping to Angola

Shipping to Angola has never been easier. With streamlined processes and reliable services, sending packages to Angola is now a hassle-free experience. Whether you’re a small business owner or an individual looking to ship goods, accessing Angola’s markets is now more convenient than ever.

Read on to discover how you can take advantage of the simplified shipping options available today.

Air Freight Shipping to Angola: The Express Skyway

air freight

Air freight shipping provides a fast, reliable shipping solution for sending cargo to Angola. Though more expensive than ocean freight, it is the preferable shipping method when:


Speedy Deliveries:

  • Air Freight is the go-to option for time-sensitive shipments. It ensures rapid deliveries, crucial for industries requiring swift turnaround.
  • Air freight can deliver shipments to Angola in as little as 2-3 days compared to weeks by ocean.

Global connectivity: Air Freight networks span the globe, linking Angola to international markets seamlessly. Examples include the transportation of electronics, pharmaceuticals, and perishable goods.

Reduced packaging constraints: Air Freight often allows for less robust packaging, benefiting industries like high-tech where delicate electronic components need swift and secure transit.

Goods are high value: Air freight is recommended for expensive, sensitive or perishable goods like electronics, pharmaceuticals, or live animals. The faster transit time reduces risks.

Inventory needs are immediate: Air freight enables quick replenishment of inventory to meet urgent business needs in Angola.

Weight and size limitations allow:

  • Shipments must adhere to airline cargo dimensions and maximum weights between 45kg to 1000kg depending on aircraft type.
  • Air freight rates depend on weight, dimensions and airport pairs. Expect to pay between $2.50 – $6 per kg for flights to Angola.

Cost Implications: While it’s the fastest option, Air Freight can be cost-prohibitive for large or heavy shipments. Industries like oil and gas may find sea freight more economical.

Limited cargo capacity: The capacity of airplanes is limited. Large or bulky items, common in sectors like construction, may not be cost-effective for air transport.

Environmental impact: Air Freight has a higher carbon footprint. This might raise concerns for industries aiming for sustainability, such as those dealing with eco-friendly products.

Real-world Example: Electronics manufacturers often rely on Air Freight to quickly transport the latest tech gadgets, ensuring they hit the Angolan markets swiftly.

Sea Freight Shipping to Angola: The Maritime Odyssey

Sea freight via ocean cargo ships is the most common shipping method for transporting goods to Angola. Here are some key considerations for ocean freight to Angola:


Cost-effective for large shipments:

    • Sea freight shines when it comes to cost-effectiveness, making it the preferred choice for bulk shipments. Industries dealing with raw materials or heavy machinery benefit.
    • Sea freight costs depend on factors like container type, port pairs and fuel charges. Expect rates starting from $500 for a 20ft container to Angola.

High cargo capacity: Ships have ample space for vast quantities of cargo. This is advantageous for sectors like mining, where transporting minerals in bulk is commonplace.

Environmental sustainability: Sea freight boasts a lower carbon footprint per ton-mile. Industries emphasizing green practices, like organic farming, may prefer this mode.


Extended transit times:

    • Sea Freight is not for those in a hurry. Industries requiring just-in-time deliveries, such as the automotive sector, might find the extended transit times challenging.
    • Shipments from Asia or Europe can take 2-6 weeks to reach Angola ports by sea. This is slower than air freight but more cost-effective for large volumes.

Weather-related challenges: Sea shipments are susceptible to weather-related delays, impacting industries that can’t afford interruptions, like the construction sector.

Port congestion and customs: Ports may face congestion, and customs processes can be time-consuming. This may pose challenges for industries with perishable goods, like the agricultural sector.

Real-world Example: Angola’s oil and gas industry, a significant player on the global stage, often relies on Sea Freight to transport heavy equipment, machinery, and raw materials essential for exploration and production.

RORO Shipping to Angola

RoRo (roll-on/roll-off) shipping is a popular method of transporting vehicles and other rolling cargo to Angola. Here are some key points about roro shipping to Angola:

  • Angola has major port facilities that can accommodate roro ships at ports like the Port of Luanda, Port of Lobito, and Port of Namibe. These ports have roro ramps and terminals for efficient loading and unloading of vehicles.
  • Main roro shipping routes to Angola include from Europe (Portugal, UK, Germany), South Africa, and Asia (China, Japan). The journey takes 1-2 weeks depending on the port of departure.
  • Key imports transported via roro ships include used vehicles, construction equipment, commercial trucks and trailers. These originate from exporters in Japan, UK, Germany looking to enter the Angolan market.
  • Safety and security are crucial given piracy risks in the Gulf of Guinea region. Roro ships take security measures like sailing in convoys with naval escorts.
  • Angola is expected to further invest in port infrastructure and reduce red tape which will boost roro shipping. This allows faster transportation of vehicles to meet Angola’s growing demand.

Main shipping ports in Angola

As a coastal country on the southwestern coast of Africa, Angola has several major seaports that serve as key entry points for automobile and machinery imports.

The main ports handling roro cargo in Angola are:

  • Port of Luanda – The largest and busiest port in Angola. It has multiple roro berths and handles the majority of vehicle imports into the country. Major automobile manufacturers like Toyota, Nissan and Hyundai use the port of Luanda to bring in new cars and trucks.
  • Port of Lobito – The second largest port in Angola after Luanda. Lobito has dedicated roro terminal facilities and also receives shipments of heavy construction machinery and equipment in addition to vehicles. Its proximity to the Democratic Republic of Congo makes it an important gateway for roro shipping into central Africa.
  • Port of Namibe – A midsized but strategic port located in southwestern Angola. Namibe is growing in significance as a roro port due to its location serving landlocked neighbors like Zambia. Roro ships deliver agricultural and mining equipment here.

Here is an overview of some key regulations and customs considerations for roro shipping to Angola:


  • All roro cargo imports require an Import Declaration (DI) to be lodged with Angolan Customs. This must be submitted at least 5 days before arrival.
  • Strict regulations apply on used vehicle imports. Only left-hand drive vehicles less than 8 years old can be imported. Right-hand drive used vehicles are prohibited.
  • Angola only allows licensed clearing agents to handle customs clearance. A local agent is required.


  • The Bill of Lading, commercial invoice, packing list must accompany the import declaration.

Bill of Lading: A crucial document that serves as a receipt for the cargo and a contract of carriage. Ensure accuracy in the information provided.

Commercial Invoice: Detailing the value of the goods being shipped.

Packing List: Providing a detailed breakdown of the items included in the shipment.

  • A certificate of conformity from an accredited agency is required for regulated imports like vehicles, machinery, electronics. This certifies compliance with Angolan standards.
  • A clean report of findings from customs inspection at origin may be required for used vehicles. This verifies the car’s condition before shipping.
  • Ensure that vehicles being shipped have valid titles and registrations.
  • Some countries may require a certificate of compliance with environmental or safety standards.

Customs clearance

Customs taxes and duties are payable on roro cargo like automobiles. This includes import duty, excise tax, stamp duty based on CIF value.

  • Customs may do inspections of roro cargo at port terminals before releasing delivery. This causes clearance delays.
  • Roro ships may need to file a cargo manifest and Temporary Admission document for the vehicles to avoid import duties until sale.
  • Understand the applicable import duties for the vehicles or goods being shipped. Budget accordingly to cover these costs.
  • Check if the valued added tax is applicable and understand the rate for your specific items.

With complex customs procedures in Angola, working closely with a knowledgeable shipping agent and import broker is highly recommended for smooth clearance of roro cargo.

Bulk Shipping to Angola

Angola has become a key destination for bulk commodities like oil, coal, grains, and minerals owing to its natural resources and growing economy. The country possesses major deepwater ports able to handle large bulk carriers which facilitate the shipping of bulk cargoes.

Shipments to Angola usually originate from South America, North America, or Asia bound for Angola. Preconditioning of grain cargoes is critical to avoid spoilage during transit times of 2-6 weeks.

Main bulk shipping to Angola

bulk shipping
Dry Bulk Cargo

1. Dry bulk cargo:

Dry bulk cargo consists of unpackaged, homogeneous goods in large quantities. These commodities are loaded directly into the cargo holds of specialized ships designed for efficient transport. In the case of Angola, the following types of dry bulk cargo are commonly shipped:

a. Minerals:
  • Angola is rich in mineral resources, and the export of minerals is a significant component of its economy. Dry bulk carriers transport minerals such as iron ore, copper, diamonds, and manganese.
  • Iron ore is mined in Angola and exported in bulk carriers to steel mills in Asia and Europe. The deepwater ports allow berthing of Capsize vessels for iron ore shipments.
b. Grains:
  • Agricultural products like grains (wheat, maize, soybeans) are transported in bulk. These commodities are essential for meeting both domestic and international food demands.
  • Angola relies heavily on imported grains like wheat and soybean which arrive in Handysize and Supramax bulk ships. Brazil, Argentina and the U.S. are major sources.
c. Coal:
  • Angola has coal deposits, and the export of coal is facilitated through dry bulk shipping. Coal is a crucial energy resource and is used in various industrial processes.
  • Thermal coal and coking coal are imported into Angola in Handymax and Panamax bulkers to fuel demand from cement factories, and industrial buyers.
d. Construction materials:
  • Bulk carriers transport construction materials such as cement, sand, and aggregates. These materials support infrastructure development and construction projects in Angola.
e. Fertilizers:
  • Agricultural activities in Angola benefit from the import of bulk fertilizers. These essential nutrients enhance soil fertility and crop yields.
Key characteristics of dry bulk shipping:
  • Bulk Carriers: Specially designed ships, often categorized into Capesize, Panamax, and Handysize vessels, tailored to carry dry bulk cargo.
  • Efficiency: Dry bulk shipping is cost-effective for transporting large volumes of homogeneous goods over long distances.

2. Liquid bulk cargo:

Liquid bulk cargo involves the transportation of liquids in large quantities, typically stored in specialized tanker vessels. In Angola, the primary liquid bulk cargo includes:

a. Crude oil:
  • Angola is Sub-Saharan major oil-producing country, and crude oil is a significant export. Tanker vessels transport crude oil from offshore oil fields to global markets.
  • Bulk oil tankers are used to export crude oil to major consumers like China and India.
b. Petroleum products:
  • Refined petroleum products, including gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel, are shipped in liquid bulk form to meet domestic and international energy demands.
c. Chemicals:
  • Liquid bulk carriers transport various chemicals used in industries, including petrochemicals, acids, and other liquid substances.
d. Liquefied natural gas (LNG):
  • Angola has explored the export of LNG. Specialized LNG carriers transport liquefied natural gas to international markets.
Key characteristics of liquid bulk shipping:
  • Tanker vessels: Specially designed tanker ships, including Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs) and LNG carriers, are used for transporting liquid bulk cargo.
  • Specialized handling: Liquid bulk cargo requires specialized handling and storage facilities to maintain product integrity.

Key ports for bulk shipping in Angola

1. Port of Luanda:

  • Location: Luanda, the capital city of Angola.
  • Significance: As the largest and busiest port in Angola, the Port of Luanda serves as a key gateway for imports and exports. It has facilities for handling a wide range of cargoes, including bulk commodities.

2. Port of Lobito:

  • Location: Lobito, on the Atlantic coast.
  • Significance: The Port of Lobito is a major port with modern facilities and deep-water berths capable of accommodating large vessels. It plays a vital role in the transportation of bulk goods, particularly minerals.

3. Port of Namibe:

  • Location: Namibe, in the southwestern part of Angola.
  • Significance: The Port of Namibe serves as a key gateway for the export of minerals, with facilities for handling bulk cargo. It is strategically located for trade with neighboring countries.

4. Port of Soyo:

  • Location: Soyo, at the mouth of the Congo River.
  • Significance: The Port of Soyo is known for handling oil and gas-related bulk shipments, given its proximity to Angola’s offshore oil fields. It is a critical hub for the country’s oil and gas industry.

5. Port of Cabinda:

  • Location: Cabinda, separated from the main part of Angola by a narrow strip of land belonging to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
  • Significance: Cabinda handles both general cargo and bulk shipments, including oil-related activities. It serves as a key port for the region.

6. Port of Ambriz:

  • Location: Ambriz, north of Luanda.
  • Significance: While smaller in scale compared to Luanda and Lobito, the Port of Ambriz handles various cargoes, contributing to regional trade.
Key features of these ports for Bulk Shipping:
  • Deep-water access: Many of these ports offer deep-water berths, allowing them to accommodate large vessels, including bulk carriers.
  • Modern infrastructure: Significant investments have been made to upgrade and modernize port facilities, enhancing their efficiency in handling bulk cargo.
  • Specialized terminals: Some ports, especially those handling oil and gas-related bulk shipments, have specialized terminals equipped with the necessary infrastructure.
  • Connectivity: These ports are strategically located to facilitate trade not only within Angola but also with neighboring countries and international markets.

Prohibited Items while Shipping to Angola

  • The importation of plants and animal byproducts from regions afflicted with epiphytic disease as well as animals from areas impacted by epizootic diseases is forbidden by the Angolan government.
  • Certain distilled beverages, pornography, roulette and other gambling machines.
  • Imports of passenger cars into Angola are prohibited after six years from the date of manufacture. Only vehicles that are more than ten years old from the date of manufacture are forbidden. This includes trucks used for industrial purposes and vehicles used to transport more than ten people.
  • Importing viable transgenic grain or seed is forbidden in Angola. While approved, transgenic food assistance needs to be ground.
  • Counterfeit versions of national franchise models.
  • Homemade or home-produced medications.
  • Food items that are either poorly conserved or do not comply with the requirements set forth by the law as it is.
  • Used accumulators and batteries.
  • Worn or retreated tires.
  • Fake products.
Goods that need import permits:
  • Human pharmaceuticals, saccharine, and goods produced from saccharine.
  • Devices such as radios, transmitters, and receivers.
  • Explosives, firearms, ammo, and fireworks.
  • Crates and other packaging housing plants, roots, bulbs, microbiological cultures, buds, fruits, seeds, and so on.
  • Postal or fiscal stamps.
  • Hazardous and poisonous materials, as well as medications, including immunizations for animals.
  • Items or samples that are imported for promotional purposes and not for resale.


Embarking on the journey of shipping to Angola presents a myriad of strategic decisions and logistical considerations. Whether you choose the swift skies of Air Freight or the maritime odyssey of Sea Freight, the key lies in aligning your choice with the unique needs of your cargo and industry.

Navigating the waves and skies requires a deep understanding of the advantages and disadvantages each mode offers. Air Freight is known for its speed and global connectivity, making it ideal for time-sensitive industries like electronics. On the other hand, Sea Freight is renowned for its cost-effectiveness and high cargo capacity, making it the preferred choice for sectors dealing with bulk shipments, such as the oil and gas industry.

As you embark on your journey to Angola, take into account the urgency of your cargo, your budget limitations, and the environmental impact of your chosen freight method. Whether your cargo soars through the clouds or sails the ocean currents, the key is to ensure a seamless journey that aligns with your objectives and timelines.

Smooth seas and clear skies await as you navigate the logistics landscape to Angola. May your shipments arrive at their destination swiftly and securely, contributing to the flourishing trade and connectivity between global markets and the vibrant nation of Angola.

Safe travels and successful shipping with Ameritrans Freight Shipping!



Phone: +1(800)-413-2452