Freight Terms and Glossary
Accessorial charges – Charges made for performing services beyond normal pickup and delivery, such as inside delivery or storage charges.
BOL (Bill of lading) – A document issued by a carrier which details a shipment of merchandise and gives title of that shipment to a specified party.
CI (Commercial Invoice) – A document used in foreign trade which is used as a customs declaration provided by the person or corporation that is exporting an item across international borders. The document must include a few specific pieces of information such as the parties involved in the shipping transaction, the goods being transported, the country of manufacture, and the Harmonized System (HS) codes for those goods. A commercial invoice must also include a statement certifying that the invoice is true, and a signature.
FCL (Full Container Load) – Commonly used in international shipping, this term describes an ocean freight service, which is designed for international ocean freight shipments of cargo where international shipper has exclusive use of entire ocean freight multimodal container(s): 20', 40', 40HC etc.
FTL (Full truckload) – Full truckload shipping is the movement of at least the amount of freight necessary to fill an entire semi-trailer or intermodal container.
HAWB (House Air Waybill) – A house air waybill indicates to the customer that his/her goods have been received by the company and have been passed on for freight by air. They often include tracking numbers so that the customer can check the status of the shipment.
Hazardous Material – Hazardous materials are defined by the U.S. Department of Transportation in accordance with the Federal Hazardous Material Law. A substance or material may be designated as hazardous if the transportation of the material in a particular amount and form poses an unreasonable risk to health and safety or property. Hazardous material may include: an explosive, radioactive material; etiologic agent; flammable or combustible liquid or solid; poison; oxidizing or corrosive material; and compressed gas.
INCOTERMS – A series of pre-defined commercial terms published by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) that are widely used in International commercial transactions or procurement processes. A series of three-letter trade terms related to common contractual sales practices, the Incoterms rules are intended primarily to clearly communicate the tasks, costs, and risks associated with the transportation and delivery of goods.
Line haul – Movement of cargo between two major cities or ports.
LCL (Less than Container Load) – A term used to describe the transportation of small ocean freight shipments not requiring the full capacity of an ocean container.
LTL (Less-than-truckload) – LTL is the transportation of relatively small freight, they typically weigh between 151 and 20,000 lb (68 and 9,072 kg).
POA (Power of Attorney) – A written authorization to represent or act on another's behalf in private affairs, business, or some other legal matter. This is needed for International shipping to give another person authority to clear customs on your company’s behalf.
POD (Proof of Delivery) – A method to establish the fact that the recipient received the contents sent by the sender.
White Glove Services – A customizable service that caters to the challenging, non-traditional delivery services needed. This includes a variety of time-definite, final-mile services to homes and businesses across the nation, such as nationwide delivery, pre-appointment scheduling, product placement, product assembly, debris removal, reverse logistics (de-installation), specialty crating and packaging, 24 hour support call center, lift gate service, forklift service (must be pre-arranged) and two man delivery. Depending on your specific needs, our white glove service is customized to give you exactly what you need.
Common terms for trade shows:
General Services Contractor (GSC)/Decorator – Organization/work force that works for the show organizer or show manager that hosts the trade show. They are contractors for the production of the trade show, and are also responsible for the setup and tear down. In many areas, most of the services performed at the trade show are exclusively provided by the GSC. This means that only the GSC will provide that service and you cannot do it yourself or hire a third-party to perform those services.
Material Handling/Drayage – Material handling includes the unloading of your exhibit materials, storing in advance at the warehouse address (typically up to 30 days), delivering to the booth, and the handling of empty containers to and from storage and removing of material from the booth for reloading onto outbound carriers when the show closes. It should not be confused with the cost to transport your exhibit materials to and from the convention or event. You have two options for shipping your advance freight - either to the warehouse or directly to show site.
MHA (Material Handling Agreement) – An important document that is provided by the GSC/decorator to the exhibitor to complete and turn into the exhibitor service desk when their booth is packed and ready for shipment from the show; the document lists items being shipped along with the exhibitor's designated carrier. If this document is not turned into the service desk by the exhibitor or the exhibitor's representative, the show contractor will transport the exhibitor's materials from the show site via their designated carrier - usually at a much higher cost to the exhibitor. *Please note that some Decorators may refer to their MHA as a bill of lading