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Administration Fee (ADMIN)
Administration fee covers the cost of additional time and work required in getting payments made on our customers’ behalf.

Air Pallet
An air pallet is a specialized pallet that is standardized to fit on airplanes.

Air Waybill (AWB)
An air waybill is a non-negotiable document issued by a carrier when goods are transported by air. An air waybill acts as delivery instructions, a contract of carriage, and a cargo receipt for air freight.

Airline Terminal Handling Charge (ATHC or THC)
The Airline Terminal Handling Charge is a fee charged by airlines as for handling the cargo.

Alameda Corridor Transit Fee (ACTF, ACC, or ACS)
The Alameda Corridor fee is imposed by the terminals on container shipments that move through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach via rail to inland destinations. It is designed to cover the operating and construction costs of the Alameda Corridor Transit Authority.

Anti-dumping Duties (ADD)
The government imposes anti-dumping duty on foreign imports when it believes that the goods are being “dumped”—through low pricing—in the domestic market.

Accessorial Handling Tariff (AHT)
An Accessorial Handling Tariff is applied to shipping invoices for extra services provided that are not included within the initial estimate for services.

Authority to Make Entry (ATME or AME)
An Authority to Make Entry is usually given to a trucking company when they are picking up goods at a CFS or airline terminal on an importer’s behalf. The document acts in lieu of a Bill of Lading or AWB.

Automated Broker Interface (ABI)
Automated Broker Interface is the software that Customs brokers use to speak with the Customs systems when performing entries on behalf of their clients. ABI communication provides real time updates to the status of entries.

Automated Commercial Environment (ACE)
The Automated Commercial Environment system is the centralized portal where importers can submit entries, exporters can file export declarations, and the different government agencies can approve the filings.

Automated Manifest System (AMS)
The Automated Manifest System is an electronic information transmission system operated by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Air and ocean shipments into the U.S. require an AMS filing with detailed information about the cargo, as a security measure.

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Beneficial Cargo Owner (BCO)
A Beneficial Cargo Owner is (usually) a large importer who handles much of the import process themselves, rather than using the services of an NVOCC. A broader definition often used to describe a BCO is simply the party who owns the cargo.

Bill of Lading (BOL or B/L)
A Bill of Lading is issued to a shipper detailing the method and path of a shipment. It is a contract for the movement of the goods, and serves as a receipt for the cargo and can act as proof of ownership of the goods being transported.

Binding Ruling
A binding ruling is an official response from US Customs to an inquiry from an importer, such as a classification, country of origin, or valuation inquiries.

Bobtail has two meanings. The first refers to a semi-truck that is running without a trailer. The second and more commonly used reference for a bobtail is a truck that has all its axles attached to the same chassis.

Bonded Cargo
Bonded cargo is cargo traveling in bond, meaning it cannot be entered for US Consumption until a proper entry with US Customs has been performed. Bonded cargo is often used when goods are imported and immediately reexported, need to move to another port before an entry is made, or have manufacturing exceptions.

Bunker Adjustment Factor (BAF)
Bunker Adjustment Factor is a surcharge that accounts for vessel fuel cost. The BAF is tied to the price of fuel used by ocean vessels and determined by world bunker prices.

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Canadian Carbon Tax
The Canadian Carbon tax applies on every shipment that moves through most of the Canadian Provinces, designed to help consumers and businesses make more responsible choices to reduce their use of fossil fuels and related emissions.

Cargo Insurance (CI)
Cargo insurance is coverage for your shipment from pickup to delivery, across multiple carriers and modes. It covers the purchase value (not retail value) of your goods, as well as freight and other costs associated with the cargo.

Cargo Ready Date (CRD)
The cargo ready date is the day the cargo is expected to be available at the supplier.

Cargo Surveyor
The Cargo Surveyor is someone who inspects the way cargo is loaded and stowed onto ocean vessels. The surveyor checks to make sure cargo is loaded in compliance with laws to prevent accidents stemming from hazardous or improper loading procedures.

A carnet, often referred to as the “Passport for goods,” is an international Customs document that permits the tax-free and duty-free temporary export and import of nonperishable goods for up to one year.

Carrier Maximum Liability
Carrier Maximum liability is the maximum amount a carrier will reimburse shippers for lost or damaged cargo. Each carrier and each mode are different, and this amount is always specified in the fine print on bills of lading.

Carrier Security Fee (CSF)
The International Ship and Port Security was implemented as a result of 9/11, which regulates the safety of crews, vessels, cargo and ports. The carrier security charge covers the employment, equipment, training and planning that a carrier incurs to follow the ISPS requirements.

Certificate of Origin (CO or COO)
A Certificate of Origin is a document from a manufacturer or shipper that certifies that a good satisfies the rules of origin from the country from which it is being imported.

CFS Truck Loading Fee
Truck loading fees are charged at CFS stations on LCL cargo that is loaded or unloaded into containers. This fee goes to paying for the salaries of the warehouse workers in the CFS, usually on a per CBM basis.

A chassis is the trailer used to transport ocean containers over the road.

Chassis Split (CS)
A chassis split fee is charged if the trucker has to make an additional trip to pick up a chassis from a separate location than where the container is picked up.

Chassis Usage Fee (CUC)
Chassis Usage Fee is the fee assessed for rental of the chassis.

All imported items need to be classified according to the Harmonized Tariff Schedule. This classification determines the duty rate, and duties owed for a particular good and country of origin.

Clean Truck Fee (CTF)
Clean Truck Fee is assessed by the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach as part of the Clear Air Action Plan in an effort to reduce air pollution.

Commercial Invoice (CI)
A Commercial Invoice is a document used for customs declaration that identifies the value and quantity of the shipped products.

Congressional Federal Register (CFR)
The Congressional Federal Register is a daily publication and public notification for all rules, proposed rules, laws, federal notices, and presidential proclamations and Executive orders.

Consignee (CNEE)
A consignee is the party to whom ownership of the goods will transfer when the cargo is released at destination.

Consolidation is the act of combining two or more shipments in a truck or container.

Container Cleaning Fee
Container cleaning fees are assessed usually when invasive species are discovered in an import shipment, such as certain insects or noxious weed seeds that must be destroyed completely.

Container Detention (DET)
See Per-Diem

Container Freight Station (CFS)
A Container Freight Station is where consolidated containers (of LCL Shipments) are packed and unpacked. They are bonded facilities under Customs supervision and are usually the place where the ocean carrier will make LCL freight available for final delivery.

Container Seal
A container seal is a specialized, numerically recorded lock used to seal a container. The lock serial number is recorded at origin and checked at destination to ensure no unauthorized entry has occurred.

Container Yard (CY)
A container yard is where shippers will pick up or return empty containers.

Country of Origin (CO)
The county of origin is where an article is wholly grown, produced, or manufactured, or if built from various foreign components, the country where the final transformation took place.

Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (CTPAT)
Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism is a voluntary program for importers that help CBP increase security in the supply chain.

Cubic Meter (CBM)
Cubic Meter is a measurement of volume one meter wide by one meter long by one meter high.

Customs and Border Protection (CBP)
Customs and Border Protection is the federal agency responsible for enforcing US customs regulations and passenger entry into the United States.

Customs Entry (Entry)
A customs entry is an importer’s declaration to US Customs about goods that are being entered into the US for consumption. It includes all information about a shipment’s origin, commodity type, value and quantity and is used to calculate import duties and taxes.

Customs Exam (Exam)
Customs Exams are inspections of imported cargo, ordered by US Customs. They can be visual, X-ray, or complete cargo inspection exams.

Customs Exam Terminal (CET)
A Customs Exam Terminal is a Customs controlled examination site, usually near an ocean port, where full containers can be brought for intensive inspection.

Customs Form 7501 (7501)
A 7501, or the Entry Summary, is the Customs Form that is created when a customs entry is made. It provides basic information about the shipment, but most importantly is how the duties and taxes are calculated, and what is owed for the import.

CY Closing Date (Closing)
CY closing date is the last day that shippers can bring their loaded goods to the ocean terminal for a scheduled sailing. If cargo is brought after the closing date, the container will not be loaded onto a vessel until the next sailing.

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Dangerous Goods (DG)
Dangerous goods are items considered to have some sort of health or environmental danger to them. Dangerous Goods shipments need to have a certified DG shipper in order to prepare goods, paperwork, and properly label DG shipments.

Delivery Authorization Document (DAD)
The delivery authorization document authorizes pickup of a shipment by a named party, and is required to be presented at the time of pickup. Delivery free time refers to the amount of free time that a driver will wait at a location while a truck is unloaded before charging waiting time or trucker detention. This is usually 1-2 hours, depending on the company.

Delivery Order (DO)
A Delivery Order is the document that is provided to a trucker authorizing the pickup and delivery of the shipment.

Demurrage (DEM)
Demurrage is charged by the carrier and terminal operator for storing the container at the port after the free time expires.

Detention (DET)
Detention is a charge imposed by the carriers when a consignee detains a container longer than the allotted free time.

Duty Disbursement Fee (DD)
Duty disbursement fee is charged to clients who do not pay duties and taxes directly to the government, and request that Transmodal pay on their behalf. This service fee is calculated as a percentage of the amount advanced by Transmodal.

Drayage (DRAY)
Drayage is the term used for trucking containers to and from seaports.

Drop and Pick
Drop and pick is the term used to describe when a trucker delivers a trailer or container to a location, drops it off, and then picks up another trailer or container from the same location. It is used for high frequency shippers to cut down on drayage costs.

Dry Run
A dry run is a trip performed by a transportation provider that results in no delivery or pickup. For example, a trucker is booked to pick up a load, but the load is not ready when the driver arrives. The driver has then performed a dry run, as pickup of the cargo was impossible at that time.

Dry Van (DV)
Dry Van is the term used for enclosed trailers for LTL and FTL that will keep cargo protected from weather.

Many types of imported goods have an associated duty or tax owed upon import. This can be calculated by numerous ways, but mostly calculated as a percentage of the value imported.

Duty Drawback
Duty Drawback is a mechanism that allows exporters to claim back the duties that were previously paid on imported goods, but subsequently exported within the designated time frame.

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Equipment Imbalance Surcharge (EIS)
The Equipment Imbalance Surcharge is a charge levied by ocean carriers when there is a shortage or surplus in certain areas. The fee is charged on imports or exports to and from specific ports to offset the costs of rebalancing equipment to meet demand.

Exam Supervision Fee
When cargo is selected for an examination, a Customs officer needs to supervise the workers at the examination site. The Exam supervision fee is charged to the importer to reimburse the government for their time, in accordance with 19 CFR 151.6.

Excise Tax
An Excise tax is a tax levied on goods or activities at the time of manufacture or use, vs the time of sale.

Express Bill of Lading
An express bill of lading is a type of bill of lading (B/L) in which the carrier is obligated to deliver the goods to the named consignee and no original bills of lading (OBL) are issued at all.

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Federal Maritime Commission (FMC)
The Federal Maritime Commission is an independent U.S. agency responsible for regulating foreign and inter-coastal ocean commerce shipping via U.S. ports.

Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS)
Fish and Wildlife Service is a Federal agency that has jurisdiction over imports of live animals.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
The Food and Drug Administration is a government agency that also has jurisdiction over imports. They will get involved mostly with items that may have a health risk if ingested, such as any imported food, drugs, and even medical equipment.

Forklift Fee
Forklift fees are charged at CFS stations on LCL cargo that is loaded or unloaded into containers. This fee goes to the maintenance of forklifts in the CFS, usually charged on a per CBM basis.

Forty-foot Equivalent Unit (FEU)
Forty-foot Equivalent Unit is a 40′ container.

Forwarders Cargo Receipt (FCR)
An Forwarders Cargo Receipt is issued by the Freight Forwarder to a shipper, and acts as acknowledgement for receipt of cargo.

Free Trade Zone (FTZ)
A Free Trade Zone is a specialized economic zone where cargo can be imported, stored, manipulated, and further manufactured, then exported without having to pay duties on the imported products.

Freight All Kinds (FAK)
Different cargo has different specialized rates. FAK is a term use in ocean shipments to describe general, non-specific, and non-hazardous cargo, typically used when negotiating volume contracts.

Full Container Load (FCL)
A Full Container Load is an ocean shipment when one consignee’s freight occupies an entire container.

Fumigation Fee
Fumigation fees occur when containers need to be fumigated. This often happens when shipping wooden pallets to various countries that have fumigation certification requirements.

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Gate In
A container needs to gate in at the Container Yard (CY) before the CY cut-off, and a Less than Container Load (LCL) shipment needs to gate in at the Container Freight Station (CFS) before the CFS Cut-off.

General Average
General Average is a marine cargo insurance agreement that shippers enter into when shipping via ocean. The agreement says that if some cargo is intentionally jettisoned at sea to save the vessel, crew, and other cargo, then shippers whose cargo was not lost will cover the losses of the other shippers.

General Order (GO)
General Order is the status arriving cargo receives if it does not have a properly filed customs entry 15 days after its arrival at the first port in the US. Cargo will then remain in General Order status for 6 months, and if no entry is made, the goods will be put up for auction or destroyed.

General Rate Increase (GRI)
The General Rate Increase is a general rate increase that all ocean carriers may choose to apply. U.S. regulation requires that carriers must announce any GRI at least 30 days in advance.

Ground Handling Agent (GHA)
Ground Handling Agents are companies that are responsible for unloading freight from airplanes, verifying its clearance with US Customs, and making freight available to final consignee. The agents can be airline specific like Lufthansa, or handle a group of air carriers such as Menzies Aviation.

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Harbor Maintenance Fee (HMF)
Harbor Maintenance Fee is a tax that is assessed only on ocean imports. It is calculated at 0.125% if the cargo value with no minimum or maximum. The HMF is designed to help subsidize the cost for construction and maintenance of US harbors and inland waterways.

The supplier should know whether a product is hazmat and how to ship a hazmat product. The supplier should also be able to provide all dangerous goods paperwork.

House Bill of Lading (HBL)
A House Bill of Lading is a bill of lading created by an NVOCC or freight forwarder. It is an identification of the goods being shipped, who is shipping them and to whom the goods are consigned.

HS / HTS Codes (HTS)
The Harmonized System (HS) is a 6 digit “harmonized” coding system shared by over 200 countries that identify goods being shipped. The Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) is the 10 digit import codes that identify all imported products, and how much duty is owed.

Hundred Weight (CWT)
Hundred Weight is calculated by dividing the total weight of a shipment by 100. That result is then usually matched to a tariff guide to determine the rate of a shipment.

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Illegal Transshipment
An illegal transshipment occurs when goods from one location are shipped to another location for illegal reasons, en route to the final destination. There is an opportunity for fraud in attempts to avoid higher import duties from certain countries, avoid embargoes, and smuggle goods on the black or grey market.

Import Export (IE)
An Import Export is a type of bond movement that allows a shipment to be immediately exported from the same port of origin, without having to file an import declaration.

Importer of Record (IOR)
An importer of record is the entity or individual who is responsible for all entry documents required by Customs Border Protection (CBP) and for the product classification and payment of duties, as well as any other import obligations.

Importer Security Filing (ISF)
An Importer Security Filing, also known as “10+2,” is a filing required by the CBP that documents importing information and details, as shipments pass from point to point.

Inbond Transit (IT)
An Inbond Transit is a type of movement that allows imported, and uncleared cargo to move to a port other than what is stated on the original bill of lading. Among other reasons, this can be done in order to move cargo to an FTZ, or a port closer to the consignee.

Incoterms (INCO)
Incoterms are managed by the International Chamber of Commerce and lay the guidelines between buyers and sellers on which party pays for transportation, and where risk of loss transfers.

Informal Entry
An informal entry takes place when the value of the entry is under $2500. Informal entries are essentially entered as personal use and do not require a US Customs import bond.

Inland Point Intermodal (IPI)
Inland Point Intermodal is any inland destination for ocean cargo that has arrived in an ocean vessel, and must be transloaded onto another type of carrier to reach its IPI.

International Maritime Organization (IMO)
The International Maritime Organization is an agency under the United Nations that governs shipping regulations. Their goals are to decrease pollution from ocean vessels and increase safety and security.

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Jones Act
The Jones Act is a federal law that simply requires any ocean shipments that are moving from one US port to another US port, are transported by vessels owned and operated by US citizens.

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Last Free Day (LFD)
The Last Free Day is the last day of a period of free storage time in which the cargo can be picked up without paying demurrage or storage.

Less than Container Load (LCL)
A Less than Container Load is a mode of shipping via ocean. If you don’t have enough cargo to fill up an entire container, consider shipping LCL.

Less than Truckload (LTL)
A Less than Truckload service is used for smaller shipments that take up less than a full truckload and can be combined with other small shipments to fill up a truck.

Letter of Credit (LC)
A letter of credit is a mechanism to process payment and freight release through the buyer’s and seller’s banks. A buyer will deposit the money into their bank, and the bank will release the payment to the seller’s bank once the cargo is confirmed to hit a certain milestone, usually once it has been shipped from origin.

Liquidation occurs usually about one year after an entry takes place. When an entry is liquidated, essentially customs is closing the file on the entry.

List of Incoterms
Incoterms are managed by the International Chamber of Commerce and lay the guidelines between buyers and sellers on which party pays for transportation, and where risk of loss transfers. The 2020 Incoterms are EXW, FCA, FOB, FAS, CFR, CIF, CPT, CIP, DPU, DAP, and DDP.

Live Unload
A live unload usually refers to Full Container loads wherein importers are given 1-2 hours to unload the cargo from the truck while the driver waits before bringing the empty container back to the port.

Low Sulfur Surcharge (LSS)
When cargo vessels get close to ports that have high populations, they are required to use a fuel with a low sulfur content to limit their pollutants. The lower sulfur fuel is more expensive than the regular bunker fuel that vessels burn during most of the ocean voyage, so this fee is to offset those costs.

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Merchandise Processing Fee (MPF)
The Merchandise Processing Fee is an import tax charged on every import shipment, even on duty free shipments. It is based on 0.3464% of the cargo value, with a minimum charge of $27.23 ,and a maximum charge of $528.33. If the value of the cargo is less than $2500, the flat rate of the MPF is $2.18. This fee is imposed to help offset the salaries of federal customs workers.

Misdeclared Cargo
Misdeclared cargo occurs when the description of the cargo on a Bill of Lading or entry document does not match the actual contents of the shipment. Misdeclared cargo can cause accidents and unpaid duties, which can result in criminal prosecution.

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Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier (NVOCC)
An Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier is an entity that provides transportation services, without actually operating any of the ocean vessels or airplanes.

Notify Party
A notify party is any party that is notified with shipment information by a carrier upon the arrival of cargo at its destination.

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Ocean Transport Intermediary (OTI)

Origin Receiving Charge (ORC)
The Origin Receiving Charge is a fee charged to cover the handling costs of cargo at an origin terminal or container freight station.

Original Bill of Lading (OBL)
An original bill of lading is a contract of carriage that serves as a title of the cargo and confirms the carrier’s receipt of the cargo.

Other Government Agency (OGA)
Other Government Agencies such as FDA, EPA, DOT, FCC, and many others, also have jurisdiction over imports. All imports must comply with all government agency requirements in order to be legally imported and sold within the US.

Out of Gauge (OOG)
A shipment is considered Out of Gauge when it will not fit into a normal 20/40′ container. OOG usually requires the use of either a flat rack container or open top container to accommodate the excessive dimensions.

Overweight Surcharge
An overweight surcharge is assessed when cargo is over the maximum allowable payload for standard equipment, and additional specialized equipment is required to move the cargo.

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Packing List (PL)
A Packing List is a document used for Customs declaration that identifies the quantity, weight, dimensions, and carton count of the shipped products.

A pallet is a flat transport structure used to increase the ease of handling, speed of loading/unloading, and protection of cargo during the transportation process.

Pallet Exchange Fee
Most CFS or Cargo terminals will accept an even exchange in pallets when picking up cargo that has been loaded on pallets. In cases where the trucker doesn’t have pallets to exchange, they could instead be charged a fee for the pallets.

Pallet Purchase Fee
The cost to purchase a pallet from a CFS, warehouse or other cargo terminal.

Panama Canal Surcharge
This as a fee assessed on ocean shipments when the transporting vessel needs to go through the Panama Canal.

Partner Government Agency (PGA)
A Partner Government Agency is a division of the U.S. federal government that regulates specific products imported into the U.S., along with CBP.

Peak Season Surcharge (PSS)
A Peak Season Surcharge is a variable surcharge that carriers may apply during times of peak demand. PSS may be applied at any time of year, but tends to be more common before the fall/winter holidays and before Chinese New Year.

Per Diem Charge (PD)
A per diem charge is the fee the ocean carrier charges for each day past the number of “free” days that the container is away from port. Per diem is also known as detention.

Pier Pass Fee (PP)
The Pier Pass fee is a single flat fee charged for both daytime and nighttime container moves at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

Port Security Fee (PSF)
The International Ship and Port Security was implemented as a result of 9/11, which regulates the safety of crews, vessels, cargo and ports. The port security charge covers the employment, equipment, training, and planning of the ISPS personnel.

Post Entry Correction (PSC)
Post Entry Corrections are corrections or adjustments to a Customs entry that has already been filed, such as a misdeclared value or HTS code.

Post Landing Charges
Post Landing Charges are those charges incurred after a container is delivered to the port of destination. This can include final drayage charge to destination, Customs clearance fees, duties/taxes, destination handling fees, and any other fee that happens after the cargo is unloaded from the ocean vessel.

Power of Attorney (POA)
A Power of Attorney is needed for a broker to perform Customs entries on behalf of their clients.

A pre-pull is when the trucker pulls a container from the port and stores it at the trucker’s yard instead of immediately delivering it.

Principal Party of Interest (USPPI)
The Principal Party of Interest is the entity in the US that receives the main benefit in an export. This is typically the US seller or manufacturer.

Prior Notice
Prior Notice is a procedure importers need to go through when importing goods subject to the FDA, such as food. It allows the FDA to target higher risk products for review before the shipment arrives at the port of import.

Proof of Delivery (POD)
Proof of delivery is a signed document from a recipient, confirming that they have received the goods.

A Protest is submitted to US Customs when a change or amendment needs to be made to a customs entry that has already been liquidated. The protest period lasts for 180 days past the entry liquidation date.

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Reverse Intermodal Inland Point (RIPI)
This term is used to describe a shipment that travels intermodal to one location, then travels back towards its origin point. An example is a shipment that is moved via ocean from the East Coast to the West Coast, then the cargo moves back to Denver via rail.

Rolled Cargo
Rolled cargo is cargo that could not be loaded onto the vessel it was scheduled to sail on, because that vessel ran out of capacity.

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Said to Contain (STC)
Said to Contain is terminology used on bills of lading for ocean cargo prepared by freight forwarders or ocean carriers. The phrase is preceded by a description of the goods and quantities that a shipper declares are in a container.

Sea Waybill (SWB)
A Sea Waybill is an official “copy” of the bill of lading. The bill of lading is an actual contract between a carrier and a shipper that addresses the terms of carriage, receipt of goods, and acts as the title to the goods. A Seaway Bill gives evidence of the contract, and allows for the recipient to take possession of the goods quicker. Seaway bills are typically used in an established, ongoing relationship between a shipper and receiver.

Security Manifest Document Fee (SMDF)
This is the fee for processing and monitoring manifest data, which has to be provided to the US Customs.

Shipper’s Export Declaration (SED)
A Shipper’s Export Declaration is the declaration an exporter must provide when exporting commodities when total Schedule B quantity is valued over $2500. It is also used by the Census Bureau to gather macro level export information.

Shipper’s Letter of Instructions (SLI)
A Shipper’s Letter of Instructions is provided by the shipper to a freight forwarder and indicates the specifics of a shipment such as the consignee, the product, the final destination. The information is used to create the Bill of Lading.

Shipping Order (SO)
A Shipping Order is a document issued by the carrier that confirms a shipment’s booking on a vessel.

Standard Equipment
Standard Equipment is any equipment used in normal transportation, when cargo does not require any special handling.

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Transloading is the process of moving a shipment from one mode of transport to another (e.g., from ocean container to truck).

Trucking Wait Fee
A trucking wait fee is assessed by the trucker if the amount of free waiting time expires.

Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit (TEU)
A twenty-foot equivalent unit is a measure of volume in units of twenty-foot long containers.

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U.S. East Coast (USEC)
USEC is an abbreviation that indicates an ocean vessel will be traveling to an East Coast port, such as New York/ New Jersey, Savannah, Charleston or the Port of Virginia.

U.S. West Coast (USWC)
USWC is an abbreviation that indicates an ocean vessel will be traveling to a West Coast port, such as Los Angeles/ Long Beach, Seattle/ Tacoma, Oakland or Portland.

US Trade Representative (USTR)
The US Trade Representative is the federal agency who advises the office of the President on recommended trade policy for the United States.

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VACIS stands for Vehicle and Cargo Inspection System. This is a type of X-ray exam that looks at the contents of an entire container or truck.

Vessel Alliances
Vessel Alliances are agreements between different Vessel owners that allow vessel and slot sharing between the companies in the agreement. There are currently 3 main vessel alliances that account for 80% of the global shipping volume – 2M, OCEAN, and THE alliances.

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Wharfage is the fee charged by certain U.S. Port Authorities for using a wharf to unload cargo from a vessel. Specifically, this is applicable in the Ports of Miami, Mobile, Houston, and New Orleans.

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X-Ray Exam
An X-ray exam, also known as a Non-Intrusive Inspection (NII) or a Vehicle and Cargo Inspection System (VACIS) exam, is the least intensive Customs exam.

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