GLOSSARY OF SHIPPING TERMS
The Automated Export System (AES) is the system used by U.S. exporters to electronically declare their international exports
Air Waybill (AWB) or air consignment note refers to a receipt issued by an international airline for goods and an evidence of the contract of carriage, but it is not a document of title to the goods
An agent appointed by an airline to solicit and process international airfreight shipments.
An airport code is a short code used to identify a specific airport.
A notice from the ocean carrier to the “notify party” indicating the vessel’s estimated arrival date; identifying shipment details.
Barge To Ship
The situation where cargo is loaded directly from the barge to the ocean carrier.
A Bonded warehouse is a building or other secured area in which dutiable goods may be stored, manipulated, or undergo manufacturing operations without payment of duty.It may be managed by the state or by private enterprise. In the latter case a customs bond must be posted with the government.
A shipping term for any loose material that must be loaded individually,i.e not containerised.
Carrier Certificate and Release Order
A document used to advise customs of a shipments details.
Certificate of Origin(CO)
A CO traditionally states from what country the shipped goods originate, but “originate” in a CO does not mean the country the goods are shipped from, but the country where their goods are actually made.
The shipment weight used in determining air freight charges. The chargeable weight may be the dimensional weight or for container shipments, the gross weight of the shipment less the tare weight of the container.
Cash on Delivery, Collect Freight Consignee pays to carrier when freight reaches port or ultimate destination.
The Commercial Invoice is important for the clearance process used by customs officials to classify merchandise so that duties & taxes can be correctly assessed.
A commodity is a good for which there is demand and which is used in commerce
In a contract of carriage, the consignee is the person to whom the shipment is to be delivered to whether by land, sea or air.
Country of Transshipment
The country through which a shipment must pass and be re-sorted to reach its ultimate destination.
A courier is a person or a company who delivers messages, packages, and mail
Container Service Charge
Customs brokerage is a profession that involves the ‘clearing’ of goods through customs barriers for importers and exporters (usually businesses).
International procedure of declaring goods at the Customs Office to gain authorized entry of those goods into a country.
Certain countries require special invoices containing specific information for the
Customs clearance and valuation of imported shipments
The value of a shipment declared to customs
Dangerous goods, also called hazardous materials or HazMat, are solids, liquids, or gases that can harm people, other living organisms, property, or the environment. They are often subject to chemical regulations
Value of a shipment which is declared by the shipper used to determine duty and carrier liability
Delivery Instructions or delivery orders
A Delivery Order is a document from a consignor, a shipper, or an owner of freight which orders the release of the transportation of cargo to another party.
Delivery Service Bringing goods to a destination on behalf of a shipper for a fee.
The term demurrage originated in vessel chartering (notably voyage chartering) and refers to the period when the charterer remains in possession of the vessel after the period normally allowed to load and unload cargo (lay time).
Destination The end location of a shipment.
Used in shipping and freight, this is a billing technique which takes into account the XYZ axis dimensions of a package.
Door to Door
Door to Port
Goods which are subject to import duty.
A duty is a kind of tax, often associated with customs, a payment due to the revenue of a state, levied by force of law. It is a tax on certain items purchased abroad
ECCN (Export Control Commodity Number)
A specific alpha-numeric code that identifies the level of export control for articles, technology and software (collectively, “Items”) that are exported from member states of the Wassenaar Arrangement.
EIN (Exporter Identification Number)
An IRS identification number is assigned by the US government for shipments being exported from the US.
Electronic Export Information (EEI)
The term “EEI” was adopted in 2005 to clearly differentiate the electronic reporting of this information from the use of a paper “Shipper’s Export Declaration” (SED) form, which, as of September 30, 2008, is no longer accepted.
Embargo An embargo is the partial or complete prohibition of commerce and trade with a particular country, in order to isolate it
Customs Form CF3461 allows the importer or Customs Broker to take immediate delivery of imported goods prior to payment of duties and processing of an Entry Summary for most types of merchandise. The importer has ten days to file the Entry Summary and pay the appropriate duties.
Estimated Time of Arrival
Estimated Time of Departure
Shipper’s Export Declaration.
A contract of carriage for exported goods.
An individual or organization that unites buyer and broker for a fee.
A Government authorization which allows a shipper to export specified goods to designated countries.
Ocean Bill of Lading issued by the steamship line when cargo is consigned directly to the customer with the effect of cargo being immediately released.
F.O.B. (Free on Board)
Free on board means that the seller delivers when the goods pass the ship’s rail at the named port of shipment.
Full container load
A flat trailer
An origin declaration document, required by importers from their foreign suppliers, to enable the importer to receive favorable Customs duty considerations
A 40 foot long container
To ensure and facilitate the passage of goods from an origin to a destination.
Free Trade Zone
A free trade zone (FTZ) or export processing zone (EPZ) is an area of a country where some normal trade barriers such as tariffs and quotas are eliminated and bureaucratic requirements are lowered in hopes of attracting new business and foreign investments
A freight forwarder, forwarder, or forwarding agent is a person or company that organizes shipments for individuals or other companies and may also act as a carrier.
Full Set Off B/L’s
Usually means the issuance of the three original’s and three copies of the ocean Bill of Lading.
Key cities regarding the entry/departure for international shipments,
Total complete weight of a shipment(includes goods and packaging)
Harmonized Code The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (HS) of tariff nomenclature is an internationally standardized system of names and numbers for classifying traded products developed and maintained by the World Customs Organization (WCO)
Hazmat Bill of Lading
Shipping papers for hazardous materials
House Bill of Lading.
House to House Rates
Warehouse to warehouse rate from the shippers warehouse to the consignees warehouse
IATA (International Air Transport Association)
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is an international industry trade group of airlines headquartered in Montreal, Canada, where the International Civil Aviation Organization is also headquartered.
An import license is a document issued by a national government authorizing the importation of certain goods into its territory.
A term applied to the status of merchandise admitted provisionally to a country without payment of duties, either for storage in a bonded warehouse or for transshipment to another point, where duties eventually will be paid.
Inspection Certificate Either an affidavit by the shipper, or by an independent inspection firm hired by the buyer, certifying the quality, quantity, and conformity of the goods to the purchase order.
A document which shows the amount of risk covered in a shipment
Monetary value to which goods on a shipment are insured to
A freight company that can offer the integrated options of air,sea and road freight.
This is a form for shipments who pass through
continental U.S., the U.S. Virgin Islands, or Puerto Rico en route to their destination.
Kilogram (2.2046 pounds).
Letter of Credit
Less than Container Load.
Less than Trailer Load.
Marks and Numbers
Marine Cargo Insurance
Marine cargo insurance covers the loss or damage of cargo between the points of origin and final destination.
NCV (No Commercial Value)
Items such as documents which have no commercial value.
Rates given by independent shippers who are not part of a conference
Goods exempt from duty in a particular customs jurisdiction
Ocean Bill of Lading
Many companies who operate under a Just-In-Time or “JIT” inventory method often utilize on-board couriers. On-board couriers are individuals who can travel at a moment’s notice anywhere in the world, usually via commercial airlines.
A shipment which stops at an intermediate stop and then needs to be shipped to its final destination.
Usually used for oversized cargo where the top of the container is kept open
Shipments too large to fit on a standard pallet(usually in excess of 85 inches)
A packing list is is a shipping document that accompanies delivery packages, usually inside an attached shipping pouch or inside the package itself. It commonly includes an itemized detail of the package contents and does not include customer pricing. It serves to inform all parties, including transport agencies, government authorities, and customers, about the contents of the package. It helps them deal with the package accordingly.
Cargo which is transported on pallets,which are also known as platforms
Items which will only remain fresh in the short term and need special freight conditions ot maintain or pro-long their freshness and avoid decay.Good examples are fish and fruit.
Phytosanitary Inspection Certificates
These are used in regards the transportation of plants,health of those plants,and conformity to local regulations in regards quarantine and disease control.
Pick Up Service
Picking up the goods to be transported from the shipper directly
Proof of delivery
Point of Origin
Where a shipment originally commenced.
Port of Landing
A postal code (known in various countries as a post code, postcode, or ZIP code) is a series of letters and/or digits appended to a postal address for the purpose of delivering mail or freight
Power of Attorney
This is where freight forwarding companies are authorised to act as agents for Importers and Exporters by the inporter or exporter.
The shipper pays prior to their freight shipment being expedited
The shipping company, name, address, and account number are pre-printed on these air bills.this speeds up the whole process and helps to maintain accuracy in documentation.
Pro forma Invoice
An invoice prepared in advance of a shipment and is often used by the shipper to obtain a letter of credit from his/her bank.
Port to port
A refrigerated trailer or container that is commonly used for perishable goods.
Articles,usually hazardous materials which need to be classified as dangerous goods when transported internationally by air.
Roll-on/roll-off (RORO or ro-ro) ships are vessels designed to carry wheeled cargo such as automobiles, trucks, semi-trailer trucks, trailers or railroad cars that are driven on and off the ship on their own wheels.
Shipper’s Export Declaration (SED)
The Automated Export System (AES) is the system used by U.S. exporters to electronically declare their international exports, known as Electronic Export Information (EEI), to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The information is also shared with the Census Bureau to help compile U.S. export and trade statistics. Formerly, this declaration was only made by the paper Shipper’s Export Declaration (SED) form.
Shipper’s Letter of Instruction
The shipper normally gives this to the freight forwarding company which details how to deal with a particular shipment
Single Access Document
Customs document regarding goods entering or leaving the EU
Short Ton (2,000 pounds).
Said to Contain
Unladen weight, which is the weight of an empty vehicle or container
The rate or price schedule for transporting different items to various countries.
A document issued by a carrier setting forth applicable rules, rates, and charges for the movement of goods. It sets up a contract of carriage between the shipper, consignee, and carrier
Instant communication tool which has been superseded by email
Twenty foot unit(vessel)
Terminal handling charge
Third Party Billing
Third party billing in regards to the transportation industry is the transference of transportation charges to a party other than the shipper or consignee.
is the document used to send shipping documents to a remitting bank for processing either a collection or payment/negotiation under a Letter of Credit
Transhipment is the shipment of goods or container to an intermediate destination, and then from there to yet another destination.
It often involves a change of transport in the intermediate destination.
Terminal Receiving Charge
Time Volume Contract
20 foot container
Unit load device- A unit load device, or ULD, is a pallet or container used to load luggage, freight, and mail on wide-body aircraft and specific narrow-body aircraft
Cost associated with one unit
If shipments are expedited under a A.I.D programme(Agency for International development),the shipment must bear the USAID emblem
USPPI (United States Principal Party of Interest)
The principal party of interest is the main beneficiary from a monetary sale.
Validated Export License
A license issued by the Bureau of Industry and Security of the U.S Department of Commerce allowing the holder to export specified goods (usually commodities) during the time the license is valid.
Weight or Measure: whichever is greater.
Weight or Weight Ton
ZIP codes are a system of postal codes used by the United States Postal Service (USPS) since 1963. The term ZIP, an acronym for Zone Improvement Plan, is properly written in capital letters and was chosen to suggest that the mail travels more efficiently, and therefore more quickly, when senders use the code in the postal address.