Tel: +353 (01) 5312821   -   Fax: +353 (0)1 5394794   -

Irish Transport Company

Dublin, Ireland

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Dublin 8

Tel: +353 (01) 5312821

Fax: +353 (01) 5394794

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European Chilled Distribution

AES The Automated Export System (AES) is the system used by exporters to electronically declare their international exports.

Air Waybill 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

Air Cargo Agent An agent appointed by an airline to solicit and process international airfreight shipments.

Airport Code An airport code is a short code used to identify a specific airport.

Arrival notice A notice from the ocean carrier to the “notify party” indicating the vessel’s estimated arrival date; identifying shipment details.

Bonded Warehouse 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.

Break Bulk A shipping term for any loose material that must be loaded individually,i.e not containerised.

BSC Bunker Surcharge - also known as fuel surcharge or BAF, Bunker Adjustment Factor

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.

CFT Cubic Feet.

Chargeable Weight 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.

COD Cash on Delivery, Collect Freight Consignee pays to carrier when freight reaches port or ultimate destination.

Commercial Invoice The Commercial Invoice is important for the clearance process used by customs officials to classify merchandise so that duties & taxes can be correctly assessed.

Consignee 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.

Courier A courier is a person or a company who delivers messages, packages, and mail.

Customs Broker Customs brokerage is a profession that involves the ‘clearing’ of goods through customs barriers for importers and exporters (usually businesses).

Customs Clearance International procedure of declaring goods at the Customs Office to gain authorized entry of those goods into a country.

Customs Invoice Certain countries require special invoices containing specific information for the Customs clearance and valuation of imported shipments

Customs Value The value of a shipment declared to customs

Dangerous Goods Dangerous goods, also called hazardous, are solids, liquids, or gases that can harm people, other living organisms, property, or the environment. They are often subject to chemical regulations

Declared Value Value of a shipment which is declared by the shipper and 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.

Demurrage 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.

DG Dangerous Goods

Dimensional Weight Used in shipping and freight, this is a billing technique which takes into account the XYZ axis dimensions of a package.

DTD Door to Door

DTP Door to Port

Dutiable Goods which are subject to import duty.

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

ETA Estimated Time of Arrival

ETD Estimated Time of Departure

EX DEC Shipper’s Export Declaration.

Export Air bill A contract of carriage for exported goods.

Export Broker An individual or organization that unites buyer and broker for a fee.

Export License A Government authorization which allows a shipper to export specified goods to designated countries.

Express B/L 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) Incoterm - Free on board means that the seller delivers when the goods pass the ship’s rail at the named port of shipment.

FCL Full container load

Forwarding To ensure and facilitate the passage of goods from an origin to a destination.

Free Trade Zone A free trade zone (FTZ) 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

Freight Forwarder 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.

Gateway City Key cities regarding the entry/departure for international shipments,

Gross Weight 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)

HBL House Bill of Lading.

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.

Import License An import license is a document issued by a national government authorizing the importation of certain goods into its territory.

In Bond 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 transhipment to another point, where duties eventually will be paid.

Insurance Certificate A document which shows the amount of risk covered in a shipment

Insured Value Monetary value to which goods on a shipment are insured to

Integrated Carrier A freight company that can offer the integrated options of air, sea and road freight.

KGS Kilogram (2.2046 pounds).

L/C Letter of Credit

LBS Pounds

LCL Less than Container Load.

LTL Less than Trailer Load.

M/N Marks and Numbers

M3 Cubic Meters

Marine Cargo Insurance Marine cargo insurance covers the loss or damage of cargo between the points of origin and final destination and is applicable to all methods of transport.

NCV (No Commercial Value) Items such as documents or samples which have no commercial value.

Non-Conference Rate Rates given by independent shippers who are not part of a conference

Non-Dutiable Goods exempt from duty in a particular customs jurisdiction.

O/F Ocean Freight

OBL Ocean Bill of Lading

On-Board Courier 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.

On-Forwarding A shipment which stops at an intermediate stop and then needs to be shipped to its final destination.

Open Tops Usually used for oversized cargo where the top of the container is kept open

Oversized Pieces Shipments too large to fit on a standard pallet - out of gauge cargo.

Packing List 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.

Palletised Cargo Cargo which is transported on pallets.

Perishable Items which will only remain fresh in the short term and need special freight conditions to 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.

POD Proof of delivery

Point of Origin Where a shipment originally commenced.

POL Port of Landing

Postal Code 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 ad-dress 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 importer or exporter.

PPD Prepaid Charges

Prepaid freight The shipper pays prior to their freight shipment being expedited

Pre-printed Air bill 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.

PTP Port to port

Reefer A refrigerated trailer or container that is commonly used for perishable goods.

Restricted Articles Articles, usually hazardous materials which need to be classified as dangerous goods when transported internationally by air.

Ro/Ro Roll-on/roll-off (RORO or ro-ro) ships are vessels designed to carry wheeled cargo such as cars, trucks, trailers, trailers or railroad cars that are driven on and off the ship on their own wheels.

Shipper’s Export Declaration (SED) Documentation showing that a particular shipment has been cleared for export by the relevant customs authorities. It will contain the particulars of the shipment.

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.

STC Said to Contain

Tare Weight Un laden weight, which is the weight of an empty vehicle or container

Tariff Rate The rate or price schedule for transporting different items to various countries.

Tariff 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

Telex Instant communication tool which has been superseded by e-mail

TEU Twenty foot unit (vessel)

THC 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.

Transmittal Letter 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 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.

TRC Terminal Receiving Charge

20 Footer 20 foot container

ULD 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

Unit Cost Cost associated with one unit

W/M Weight or Measure: whichever is greater.

WT Weight or Weight Ton

Glossary of Shipping Terms