Jargon Buster

Ship: Sending your parcel

Shipment: Parcel, or several parcels being sent together

Booking a collection: Placing a request for a courier to pick up your parcel

Tariff guide: Volumetric weight

Transit times: The number of working days it takes for your parcel to be delivered

Tracking: Being able to see the whereabouts of your parcel from collection to delivery

Customs duties: A customs duty is a charge imposed by the custom authorities in the country you are sending to. The receiver is responsible for paying any duties and taxes that may apply.

Customs paperwork: The paperwork that is sent with the parcel, detailing its content and the value. This allows customs to work out if any duties apply.

Shipment contents: The items in your parcel.

Waybill: Label your parcel.

Waybill number: The number to track your parcel that can be found at the top of the label.

Prohibited items: Items that cannot be sent via your carrier.

Export: Sending a parcel outside the UK

Sending a domestic shipment: Sending a parcel within the UK

Sending an international shipment: Sending a parcel outside the UK

Goods: The contents of your parcel.

Description of contents: A description of the items in your parcel

Document shipment: A parcel that contains only document items e.g. business correspondence such as contracts

Non-Document shipment: A parcel that contains items other than documents e.g. gifts, mobile phones, and cameras.

Security Inspection: All parcels being sent by DHLitNow users must be left open for inspection by the courier to ensure they contain no prohibited items.

Ad Valorem: This is a Latin term meaning “according to the value”. All duties and taxes are calculated on the basis of value, so you may see this used quite often.

ATA Carnet: The ATA Carnet is an international Customs document. Issued under the terms of the ATA Convention and the Istanbul Convention, it incorporates an internationally valid guarantee.The carnet can be used in place of national Customs documents and as security for import duties and taxes. This covers the temporary admission of goods and the transit of goods. The ATA Carnet can also be accepted to control the temporary export and re-importation of goods. However, in this case, the international guarantee does not apply.

Bonded Goods: These are goods stored in a secure warehouse. While they remain there, they are not liable for any payment of import duty. That is, until the duty is paid or the goods are exported or legally dealt with.

Brokerage: Often refers to customs brokerage, where a third party is used for the clearance of inbound or outbound shipments.

Cargo Manifest: A Cargo Manifest list the goods carried in a means of transport or in a transport-unit. The manifest gives the commercial details of the goods, such as:

–       Transport document numbers

–       Consignors and consignees

–       Marks and numbers

–       Number and kind of packages

–       Descriptions and quantities of goods

It may be used in place of the Cargo declaration.

Certificate of Origin: This is a specific document that expressly certifies that the goods to which the certificate relates originate in a specific country. This Certificate may also include a declaration by the manufacturer, producer, supplier, exporter or other competent person.

CIF: An abbreviation used in some international sales contracts, when the selling price includes all “Costs, Insurance and Freight” for the goods sold. This means that the seller arranges and pays for all relevant expenses involved in shipping goods – from their point of expert to a given point of import. In trade statistics, “CIF value” means that all figures for imports or exports are calculated on this basis, regardless of the nature of individual transactions.

CITES: Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species

Consuler Invoice: This is a detailed statement of goods shipped, certified by the consulate of a country. It is required by certain foreign governments that want a tighter control over imports.

Custom Declaration: Any statement or action, in any form prescribed or accepted by Customs, giving information or particulars required by Customs.

De Minimis: This is a Latin term and is a shortened version of the expression “de minimis non curat lex” meaning “the law does not care about very small matters”. It is often considered more efficient to waive very small amounts of duties and taxes rather than collect them.

EDI: Electronic Date Interchange – the electronic transmission of data.

Free Zone: An area within a country (a seaport, airport, warehouse or any designated area) regarded as being outside its customs territory. Importers may therefore bring goods of foreign origin into such areas without paying customs duties and taxis. This is always pending eventual processing trans-shipment or re-exportation. Free zones were once numerous and prosperous when tariffs were higher many years ago. Some still exist in capital cities, transport junctions and major seaports, but their number and prominence have declined as tariffs have fallen in recent years. Free zones may also be known as “free ports”, “free warehouses”, “free trade zones” and “foreign trade zones”

Harmonised System: The international system published by the World Customs Organisation that sets out in a systemised form the goods handle in international trade. Goods are grouped in Sections, Chapters, and sub-Chapters that are governed by rules.

Incoterms: The recognised abbreviation for the International Commercial Terms of Sale. These terms were last amended in the year 2010.

Landed Cost: The cost of the imported goods at the port or point of entry into a country, including the cost of freight, insurance and port and dock charges. All charges occurring after the goods leave the import point are not included.

Phytosanitary Certificate: A certificate issued by a Government agency (usually Agriculture) to satisfy import regulations of foreign countries. The certificate indicates that a shipment has been inspected and found free from harmful pests and plant diseases.

Preference (or Preferential) Duty: A lower duty rate based on the value of the goods and dependent on the country of origin.

Pro-forma Invoice: An invoice provided by a supplier prior to the shipment of merchandise, informing the buyer of the kinds and quantities of goods to be sent, their value and specifications (weight, size, etc.).

UN/EDIFACT: United Nations EDI for Administration, Commerce and Transport. EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) Standards are developed and supported by the UN for electronic message (data) interchange on an international level.

EXW Ex Works: The buyer bears all costs and risks involved in taking the goods from the seller’s premises to the desired destination. The seller’s obligation is to make the goods available at his premises (works, factory, and warehouse). This term represents the minimum obligation for the seller.

FCA Free Carrier: The seller’s obligation is to hand over the goods, cleared for export, into the charge of the carrier named by the buyer at the named place or point. If no precise point is indicated by the buyer, the seller may choose within the place or range stipulated where the carrier shall take the goods into his charge. When the seller’s assistance is required in making the contract with the carrier the seller may act at the buyer’s risk and expense.

CPT Carriage Paid to: The seller pays the freight for the carriage of goofs to the named destination. The risk of loss or damage to the goods occurring after the delivery has been made to the carrier is transferred from the seller to the buyer. This term requires the seller to clear the goods for export.

CIP Carriage & Insurance Paid to: The seller has the same obligations as under CPT but has the responsibility of obtaining insurance against the buyer’s risk of loss or damage of goods during the carriage. The seller is required to clear the goods for export however is only required to obtain insurance on minimum coverage. This term requires the seller to clear the goods for export.

DAT Delivered At Terminal: The seller is responsible for the costs and risks to bring the goods to the point specified in the contract. The seller delivers when the goods, once uploaded from the arriving means of transport, are placed at the disposal of the buyer at a named terminal at the named port or place of destination. “Terminal” includes quay, warehouse, container yard or road, rail or air terminal. Both parties should agree the terminal and if possible a point within the terminal at which point the risks will transfer from the seller to the buyer of the goods. The seller is responsible for the export clearance procedures and the importer is responsible for clearing the goods for import, arranging import customs formalities, and paying import duty.

DAP Delivered At Place: The seller bears the responsibility and risks to deliver the goods to a named place. The goods are deemed to be delivered when they are placed at the disposal of the buyer on the arriving means of transport ready for unloading at the named place of destination. Parties are advised to specify as clearly as possible the point within the agreed place of destination, because risks transfer at this point from seller to buyer.

DDP Delivered Duty Paid: The seller is responsible for delivering the goods to the named place in the country of importation, including all costs and risks in bringing the goods to import destination. This included duties, taxes and customs formalities.

FAS Free Alongside Ship: The seller has fulfilled his obligation when goods have been placed alongside the vessel at the port of shipment. The buyer is responsible for all costs and risks of loss or damage to the goods from that moment. The buyer is also required to clear the goods for export.

FOB Free On Board: Once the goods have passed over the ship’s rail at the port of export the buyer is responsible for all costs and risks of loss or damage to the goods from that point. The seller is required to clear the goods for export.

CFR Cost and Freight: The seller must pay the costs and freight required in bringing the goods to the named port of destination. The risk of loss or damage is transferred from seller to buyer when the goods pass over the ship’s rail in the port of shipment. The seller is required to clear the goods for export.

Sectors: Business Services and Logistics
Countries: United Kingdom
Topics: Distribution, Export Packing, Freight Forwarding, Getting Started, Operations, and Transport & Logistics
Export Action Plan