This study adopts an integrated hierarchical information integration (HII) approach to collect the preference data from Taiwanese shippers and international freight forwarders (IFFs) of ocean carriers. In total, data from 345 shippers and 245 freight forwarders were included in the sample for analysis. The study then uses multiple linear regression models to investigate the critical factors that influence the preferences in carrier selection among shippers and IFFs. Through model estimations and part-worth utility analyses, this paper suggests that the critical factors of concern to shippers and IFFs are obviously different. Shippers place much importance on factors related to financial stability, reliability, and accuracy of documents. In contrast, IFFs place more emphasis on rates, including negotiate rates and transportation rates, as well as reputation, space available, and on-time performance. This study also highlights that shippers are more likely to consider a carrier according to its overall performance, while IFFs only value a few of critical factors when choosing a carrier.

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