OptimalShip's Helpful Shipping Tips

Emergency Situation Surcharge (ESS)

Posted by C. Keers on May 15, 2020 9:30:58 AM

DHL introduced an Emergency Situation Surcharge (ESS) back in April of 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Today they have announced new changes that will be effective as of May 24th, 2020.

What has changed with the Emergency Situation Surcharge (ESS)?

  • ESS Is now applicable to all Time Definite International shipments in all lanes.
  • ESS is no longer restricted to CN and HK origin shipments.
  • Fuel Surcharge to be applied on the Emergency Situation Surcharge fee.
  • Applicable to all billing types. (Outbound, IMP, 3rd Country, Cash)


Overview of revised Emergency Situation Surcharge

Here are the adjusted surcharges per origin and destination combination. Please note that this rate table is based on USD per kg or lb.


For example, a 10-pound package from America to Australia will have an Emergency Situation Surcharge of 90 cents and that same package would have an ESS of $4.50 if it was going to Australia from Hong Kong. These surcharges will automatically be applied to your shipment quotes and shipment invoices.

In what circumstances will the surcharge apply?

The Emergency Situation Surcharge will continue to be applicable to all Time Definite International (TDI) shipments.

The ESS will not be applicable to Day Definite International (DDI – road) or Time Definite Domestic (TDD) shipments. Life Sciences and Healthcare customers and DHL Medical Express (WMX) shipments continue to be exempt from the ESS.


Have any other questions?

We're more than happy to help. Please contact our customer service line at 972-383-9901, or email customerservice@optimalship.com. We look forward to speaking with you!


Latest Network Updates

You or your shipping service will receive emails with any new information. You may also check DHL's online information service

Topics: International Shipping, Exports, China, Australia, Hong Kong, Imports, Europe