Global logistics provider DB SCHENKER has launched a new standardized product for a growing market segment: Customers can now book an exclusive Onboard Courier (OBC) service that provides fast and reliable express air transportation to and from any location in the world. The new product is aimed at customers who need urgent courier solutions for small and high-value shipments. With this service DB SCHENKER expands its portfolio of white-glove service solutions.

With our new OBC service, we are taking air freight to new heights. Whether urgent automotive parts need to be shipped from Germany to China to prevent a line stoppage, or a medical device from Canada is instantly needed in a hospital in South Africa – we are now able to take care of any unforeseeable and very short-term requirements of our customers. Through the new white glove service, we address new market opportunities for us as a global logistics solution provider.

Thorsten Meincke
Board Member for Air and Ocean Freight, DB SCHENKER

How does OBC work?

The OBC service team operates from three different countries to guarantee 24/7 availability for OBC requests. Customers receive a quote within minutes at any time. A courier person is dispatched at short notice to personally accompany the cargo item as a passenger on a commercial flight to minimize the risk of loss or damage and to ensure exceptionally short transit times. Customers are also provided with real-time tracking and communication, offering full visibility into the shipment’s progress. This transparency allows for better planning and peace of mind, as customers can know the exact location and status of their cargo throughout the journey.

We understand that every shipment is unique. As a fully integrated logistics service provider, we want to be problem solvers for our customers. Sometimes the high value of an item is not related to its purchasing price but rather to the costs adding up for every minute the item is not available. While we have already taken care of individual OBC customer requests in the past, we are now rolling out a standardized product offering across all continents.

Stefan Pargfrieder
VP Global Air Freight Strategy & Development, DB SCHENKER

Actual OBC deliveries already carried out

Spare parts: An unique technical item had to be shipped from Germany to China to prevent a line stoppage at an automotive production facility. The request came in late at night. The item was picked up by an OBC in the morning and flown to Beijing on the same day. A second courier conducted the domestic onwards flight within China. A third courier waited at the arrival airport to bring the cargo to the manufacturing site.

Medical items: A healthcare customer was asking for the urgent delivery of a few artificial hip joints from the United States to the UK and the Netherlands to conduct some important surgeries before the weekend. Within minutes, three different options were presented, including pick-up times, flight schedule and expected time of arrival at the final destinations. Two couriers were arranged to fly the precious cargo to Europe. While the couriers were still inflight, DB Schenker arranged stand-by vehicles for the fastest way from the arrival airports to the respective hospitals.

Commercial support: To meet the deadline for a business-critical product certification process ahead of a market introduction, DB Schenker transported a specific type of milk powder from Washington D.C. in the United States to Doha in Qatar.

High-end fashion: A luxury fashion brand asked for the immediate transport of a premium value dress from a catwalk in Japan to a store in France. DB Schenker arranged an OBC service from Tokio to Paris, and the affluent fashion lover received his desired apparel piece only a day later.

With the launch of this product, DB SCHENKER is expanding its portfolio of white glove service solutions and further taps into a growing market segment of the air freight industry.

Published March 2024