About Us
Contact Us
Customs Clearance
RYE Resources

RYE Air Cargo Glossary:

Here we have a great collection of useful links. Don't forget to come back here when you need one.


Air Cargo Terms from A - Z

ABI (Automated Broker Interface) - A computer system that allows a Customs Broker to interface directly with US Custom's computer system.

ATA Carnet (Admission Temporaire-Temporary) -see Carnet.

Accessorial Services - Services performed by an airline in addition to the normal transportation service. Common accessorial services include advancement of charges, pickup, delivery, C.O.D. service, signature service, and storage.

Advance Arrangements - The shipment of certain classes of commodities in air freight that require arrangements in advance with carriers, e.g., gold, precious gems, furs, live animals, human remains, and oversize shipments. For detailed information, consult any airline.

Advancement of Charges - A service under which airlines, in some instances, pay incidental charges that arise before or after an air haul. Examples would include cartage and warehousing costs. These charges can be in advance for the convenience of either the shipper or their receiver.

Air Cargo - Any property (freight, mail, express) carried or to be carried in an aircraft. Does not include passenger baggage.

Air Cargo Guide - A basic reference publication for shipping freight by air. It contains current domestic and international cargo flight schedule, including pure cargo, wide body and combination passenger-cargo flights. Each monthly issue also contains information on air carriers. special services, labeling, airline and aircraft decodings, air carrier and freight forwarders directory, cargo charter information, United States and Canadian city directory of small package services, interline air freight agreements, aircraft loading charts and more. For information:

Air Cargo Guide
2000 Clearwater Drive
Oak Brook IL 60521-9953

Air Cargo, Inc. (ACI) - A ground service corporation established and jointly owned by the United States scheduled airlines. In addition to its airline owners, ACI also serves over 30 airfreight forwarders and international air carriers. One of ACI. s major functions is to facilitate the surface movement of airfreight. It does this by negotiating and supervising the performances of a nationwide series of contracts under which trucking companies provide both local pickup and delivery service at airport cities and over-the-road truck service to move airfreight to and from points not directly served by the airlines. ACI publishes a directory of these trucking services, listing over 19,000 points served in the United States and the applicable pickup and delivery rates. Other services include claims inspection, terminal handling, telemarketing service, and group purchasing (equipment, supplies, insurance). ACI also makes available, in many cities, low cost, disposable containers for shippers. use. For information:

Air Cargo, Inc.
1819 Bay Ridge Avenue
Annapolis MD 21403

Aircraft Pallet - The use of a platform or pallet (in airfreight usually from ¾" to 2" thick) upon which a unitized shipment rests or on which goods are assembled and secured before being loaded as a unit onto the aircraft. Most carriers offer container discounts for palletized loads. Palletization results in more efficient use of space aboard freighter aircraft and better cargo handling, particularly when used as part of mechanized systems employing such other advances as pallet loaders and pallet transporters.

The pallet loader is a device employing one or more vertical lift platforms for the mechanical loading or unloading of palletized freight at planeside. The pallet transporter is a vehicle for the movement of loaded pallets between the aircraft and the freight terminal or truck dock. Sometimes the functions of both the pallet loader and pallet transporter are combined into a single vehicle.

Air Express - A term often used to describe expedited handling of airfreight service. Priority Airfreight.

Airfreight - A service provided for the transport of goods in any volume. Airfreight is the predominate form of air cargo, accounting for over 80% of all air cargo movement. The decision to ship by air is a market-oriented decision and hence, a consumer-oriented decision. Each shipper's decision to move goods by air includes one or more of these factors:

bulletTime Factor
bulletInventory Control
bulletSuperior condition of goods upon arrival
bulletLower shipping costs

Air Freight Forwarder - Air freight forwarders are, to the shipper, an indirect carrier because they receive freight from shippers under their own tariff, usually consolidating it into larger units tendered to the airlines. To the airlines, the airfreight forwarder is a shipper. An airfreight forwarder is ordinarily classed as an indirect air carrier; however, many air freight forwarders operate their own aircraft.

Airmail - The term airmail, as a class of mail, is used only in international postal service. Within the United States, the US Postal Service moves all first class mail, priority mail, and express mail by air to expedite delivery.

Air Transport Association of America (ATA) - The trade and service organization for the US scheduled airlines. ATA acts on behalf of the airlines to serve the government and the public in activities ranging from improvement in air safety to planning for the airlines. role in national defense. ATA plays a leading role in encouraging government to cut red tape that hampers foreign trades. In the cargo field, ATA works with the airlines, the government, and shippers in developing improved standards and techniques in all phases of air cargo. ATA is an authoritative source of information on cargo matters ranging from air freight packaging practices, automation, freight lift capacity, data on air freight growth, and statistical data on air cargo services. For information:

Air Transport Association of America
1709 New York Avenue NW
Washington DC 20006-5206

Air Transport Committee. A Canadian government agency responsible for the economic and general welfare of air transport within Canada. For information:

Air Transport Committee
15 Eddy Street
Ottawa, Ontario

Air Waybill (Airbill) - Shipping document used by the airlines for airfreight. It is a contract for carriage that includes carrier conditions of carriage including items such as limits of liability and claims procedures. The air waybill also contains shipping instructions to airlines, a description of the commodity, and applicable transportation charges. Many truckers can use air waybills as through documents for coordinated air/truck service. Air waybills are not negotiable. The airline industry has adopted a standard formatted air waybill that accommodates both domestic and international traffic. The standard document was designed to enhance the application of modern computerized systems to airfreight processing for both the carrier and the shipper.

Airline Tariff Publishing Company (ATPCO) - Publisher of airline industry tariffs setting forth rates and rules applicable to airfreight as well as fares for passengers. Tariffs are available on a subscription basis. Subscriptions include an up-to-date copy of tariffs for new subscribers. For information:

Airline Tariff Publishing Company
400 West Service Road
Chantilly VA 22021

Airport Mail Facility (AMF) - A US Postal Service facility located on or adjacent to an airport that is primarily engaged in the dispatch, receipt, and transfer of mail directly with air carriers.

All-Cargo Aircraft - An aircraft for the carriage of cargo only, rather than the combination of passengers and cargo. The all-cargo aircraft will carry traffic in bulk or container in the main deck as well as in the lower deck of the aircraft. It may include a scheduled and nonscheduled service.

Attendant Accompanying Shipments - Sometimes attendants accompany cargo shipments as when grooms or veterinarians accompany racehorses or other live animals. This service requires advance arrangements with an airline.

Automatic P.O.D. - Information automatically sent to payor containing name of person who signed for the package with date and time of delivery.

Bill of Lading (BOL) - A document by which a carrier receipts for goods and contracts to move them. In airfreight, the air waybill is a form of bill of lading and is the contract for carriage.

"blank endorsed": A negotiable bill of lading in which the title to the merchandise is passed on to another party by means of an endorsement. The holder of the "blank endorsed" bill of lading is entitled to take possession of the merchandise.
"clean bill of lading": One in which the goods are described as having been received in "apparent good order and condition" and without qualification.
"late presentation" (stale): A bill of lading which is presented to a bank for payment or negotiation after the stipulated date in the letter of credit, or later than 21 days after the date of its issuance.
"negotiation" or "to order": A bill of lading in which the merchandise is consigned directly "to order" or "to the order of" a designated party, usually the shipper or a bank. The phrase "to order" or to the order of (a designated party)" signifies negotiability permitting the title of the merchandise to be transferred many time by means of appropriate endorsement.
"notify": This phrase in a bill of lading requires the carrier to notify a designated party upon arrival of the merchandise, but does not transfer title of the merchandise to that party.
"straight or non-negotiable": A bill of lading in which the merchandise is consigned directly to a designated party, generally the buyer, but not to his "order". Delivery of the merchandise is made only to the designated party, usually without surrendering the bill of lading.

Bonded Warehouse - A warehouse authorized by Customs authorities for storage of goods on which payment of duties is deferred until the goods are removed.

Break Bulk - Disassembling of consolidated shipments for delivery or reconsignment of a shipment.

Broker (Customs) - A person or firm licensed by the US Treasury Department to transact business with Customs on behalf of importers.

Carnet - A customs document permitting the holder to carry or send merchandise temporarily into certain foreign countries (for display, demonstration, or similar purposes) without paying duties or posting bonds. The Carnet serves both as the entry document and the bond.

Cartage Agent - Ground service operator who provides pickup and delivery in areas not served directly by air carrier.

Certificate of Origin - A document required by US Customs and certain other countries for tariff purposes certifying the country of origin of specified goods.

Chargeable Weight - The weight of the shipment used in determining airfreight charges. The chargeable weight may be the dimensional weight, or on container shipments, the gross weight of the shipment less the tare weight of the container.

Charges Collect - Transportation charges may include pickup and/or delivery and are entered on the air waybill to be collected from the consignee. Equivalent terms are “freight collect” or “charges forward.”

Charter Service - The temporary hiring of an aircraft, usually on a trip basis, for the movement of cargo or passengers.

Collect Charges - The transportation practice under which the receiver of the goods pays the charges. See Charges Collect.

Collect On Delivery (COD) - A transportation service under which the carrier collects the purchase price of the goods from the receiver. At the time of delivery the carrier transmits payment to the shipper. Carriers charge a nominal fee for this service. As the term COD implies, payment is due upon delivery. There are no credit provisions in COD service.

Combination Aircraft - An aircraft capable of transporting both passengers and cargo on the same flight. Some cargo is carried on virtually all scheduled passenger flights in the belly pits below the passenger cabin.

Commodity Code. A system for identifying a given commodity by a number as a means of facilitation, for example, the application of computerization to freight transport. See Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System.

Conditions of Contract- The terms and conditions established by the air carriers for the carriage of goods. These conditions are printed on the air waybill and include items such as limits of liability, claims limitations, indemnity and dimensional weight rules.

Consignee- A person named as the receiver of a shipment; one to whom a shipment is consigned.

Consignment- Shipment of one or more pieces of property, accepted by the carrier from one shipper at one time, receipted for in one lot, and moving on one air waybill.

Consignor- One who designates the person to whom goods are to be sent. The consignor is usually the shipper.

Consolidator- An entity that provides service also provided by an air carrier, independent from that carrier, and derives income from package consolidation of others for tender to an air carrier. An Air Freight Forwarder performs the functions of a consolidator.

Consular Declaration- A formal statement made to the consul of a foreign country describing goods to be shipped.

Containerization- The practice or technique of using a box-like device in which a number of packages are stored, protected, and handled as a single unit in transit. Container descriptions have been broadened to include a unitized load on a carrier owned pallet, loaded by shippers, and unloaded by receivers at places other than on airline premises. The containers are restrained and contoured so as to permit proper positioning and tie down aboard the aircraft.

Containerized airfreight reduces packaging costs for the shipper because of the protection afforded by the container. The buildup of container loads at the shipper’s plant bypasses the terminals. Shippers who do not have appropriate facilities for loading and unloading containers may contract through the airlines for this service. Specially equipped trucks pick up containerized shipments at the shipper’s plant for direct delivery to mechanical loading equipment near planeside.

Containerization saves the airlines time and labor in ground handling. It also enables the carriers to achieve a more efficient utilization of the cubic capacity of modern freighter aircraft and wide body jets. Consequently, the airlines pass along part of these savings to shippers.

Country of Exportation (C/E)- Usually, but not necessarily, the country in which merchandise was manufactured or produced and from which it was first exported. For example, merchandise made in Switzerland and shipped to the United States through Frankfurt, Germany has Switzerland as the country of exportation.

Courier- Attendant who accompanies shipment(s). Some courier companies provide a full transportation function, without accompanying attendants, offering door-to-door air service for time-sensitive documents or small packages on a same-day or next-day basis.

Credit Arrangements- A series of programs under which airlines extend credit to shippers and consignees for the payment of charges.

Cubic Capacity- The carrying capacity within an aircraft or container according to measurement in cubic feet.

Customer Automation- The use of air carrier automation equipment on the customer’s premises that aids in the processing of shipments, i.e., airbill preparations, invoicing, weighing, and tracing.

Customs- A government authority designated to regulate flow of goods to/from a country and to collect duties levied by a country on imports and exports. The term also applies to the procedures involved in such collection.

Customs Court- A US Customs Services court based in New York City consisting of three 3-party divisions to which importers may appeal or protest classification, value decisions and other actions taken by US Customs Service.

Customs Information Exchange (CIE)- A clearinghouse of information for US Customs Service officers.

Customs Declaration- An oral or written statement attesting to the correctness of description, quantity, value, etc., of merchandise offered for importation into the United States.

Customhouse Broker- A broker who is certified by the US Bureau of Customs to act for importers and other businesses in handling for them the sequence of Customs formalities and other details attendant to the legal and expeditious importing of goods. Such brokers are among the specialists who have made it easier for more businesses to participate successfully in international air commerce.

Dangerous Goods- Articles or substances capable of posing a significant risk to health, safety, or property when transported by air. These goods are classified according to the most current editions of the ICAO Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air and the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations. Dangerous goods may be transported domestically and internationally by air. Also see Hazardous Materials.

Declared Value for Carriage- The value of goods declared to the carrier by the shipper for the purposes of determining charges or of establishing the limit of the carrier’s liability for loss, damage, or delay. See Valuation Charges.

Declared Value for Customs- The selling price of the contents of a shipment or the replacement cost if the contents are not for resale. The amount must be equal to or greater than the declared value.

Demurrage- The detention of containers by shippers or receivers of freight beyond a specified grace period. The airlines tender carrier owned containers to the customer for loading and unloading the unit. In the event the container is not returned to the carrier within a specified time (usually 36-48 hours), the carrier assesses a charge for each 24-hour period or fraction thereof beyond the allowed time.

Department of Transportation (DOT)- An executive department of the US Government established by the Department of Transportation Act of 1966 (80 Stat 931) for the purpose of developing national transportation policies. As a result of the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978, the DOT acquired many of the functions of the CAB. For information:

Department of Transportation
400 7th Street SW
Washington DC 20590

Dimensional Weight- Dimensional weight refers to density, i.e., weight per cubic foot. The weight of a shipment per cubic foot is one of its most important transportation characteristics, directly involving factors such as the efficient loading of an aircraft and the economy of freight traffic movement. Some commodities, such as machinery, have a relatively high density. Others, like hats, have a relatively low density. Hence, the Dimensional Weight Rule was developed as a practice applicable to low density shipments under which the transportation charges are based on a cubic dimensional weight rather than upon actual weight. Examples: One pound for each 194 cubic inches of the shipment in the case of most domestic air freight; one pound for each 266 cubic inches of cut flowers or nursery stock shipments; and one pound for each 166 cubic inches of most international shipments. Some carriers give discounts for shipments of high-density goods.

Distribution Service- A service under which an airline accepts one shipment from one shipper and, after transporting it as a single shipment, separates it into a number of parts at destination and distributes them to many receivers.

Drawback- A refund of duties paid on imported goods that is provided at the time of their re-exportation.

Duty- A tax imposed on imports by the Customs authority of a country. Duties are generally based on the value of the goods (ad valorem duties) or a combination of value and other factors (compound duties).

Embargo- Temporary refusal to accept traffic for transportation at certain points or in certain routes due to emergencies, limitations of facilities, or other abnormal circumstances.

Export License- A government document that permits the licensee to engage in the export of designated goods to certain destinations.

Export Management Company- A private firm that serves as the export department for several manufacturers soliciting and transacting export business on behalf of its clients in return for a commission, salary, or retainer plus commission.

Export Service- Airlines and airfreight forwarders perform many services at the request of shippers relating to the transfer, storage, and documentation of airfreight destined for export. The same is true of imports moving via air. A narrower application of the term “Export Service” refers to the air movement of goods having a subsequent movement by ocean vessel. Some airlines have a tariff on such traffic that sets forth a rate covering the air transportation, from airport or origin to seaport and all relevant transfer and documentation procedures. On freight arriving in the United States, via an ocean vessel and having a subsequent movement by air, some airlines have a similar tariff program known as “Import Service.”


Facilitation- Programs to expedite the flow of international commerce through modernizing and simplifying Customs procedures, duty collection, and other procedures to which international cargo and passengers are subject. ATA Facilitation Committee pursues this work with Government agencies in the United States and other countries. Examples of progress in facilitation include the elimination of certain export declaration requirements, more expeditious release of cargo from Customs, and clearance of cargo at point of origin.

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)- Created under the Federal Aviation Act of 1958 as the Federal Aviation Agency and charged with the responsibility of enforcing operational standards and procedures for all classes of aviation in the United States. With the creation of the cabinet level Department of Transportation in 1966, FAA became a unit within the department and received the new designation Federal Aviation Administration. The FAA Administrator is a presidential appointee and the FAA remains a separate entity with most of its former functions. In the field of air cargo, FAA enforces certain stress standards that must be met in the tiedown of cargo in flight. For information:

Federal Aviation Administration
800 Independence Avenue SW
Washington DC 20591

FOB (Free on Board)- A pricing term indicating that the quoted price includes the cost of loading the goods into transport vessels at the specified place.

Formal Entry- Formal entry is usually an entry required for merchandise over $1250 except for most textiles which required formal entry over $250.00.

Foreign Trade Zone- A port designated by the government of a country for duty-free entry of any non-prohibited goods. Merchandise may be stored, displayed, used for manufacturing, etc., within the zone and re-exported without duties being paid. Duties are imposed on the merchandise (or items manufactured from the merchandise) only when the goods pass from the zone into an area of the country subject to Customs authority.

Free Trade Zone- See Foreign Trade Zone.

Free Domicile- A term used in international transportation where the shipper pays all transportation charges and any applicable duties and/or taxes.

Freight- Property, commodities of all kinds, including small package service tendered to an airline for transportation. Does not include mail, express, or passenger baggage.

Freighter- See All-Cargo Aircraft.

General Commodity Rate- An airfreight rate based on weight and distance applicable on all commodities except those for which specific rates have been filed. The rates are published for each pair of cities an airline serves.

General Order (GO)- Merchandise not entered within 5 working days after arrival of the carrier and then stored at the risk and expense of the importer.

Gross Weight- Entire weight of a shipment including containers and packaging material.

Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System- A multipurpose international goods classification system designed to be used by manufacturers, transporters, exporters, importers, Customs, statisticians, and others in classifying goods moving in international trade under a single commodity code. The Harmonized Commodity coding system was developed under the auspices of the Customs Cooperation Council (CC), an international Customs organization in Brussels. The code is a hierarchically structured product nomenclature containing approximately 5,000 headings and subheadings describing the articles moving in international trade. It is organized into 99 chapters arranged in 22 sections with the sections generally covering an industry (e.g., Section XI, Textiles and Textile Articles) and the chapters covering the various materials and products of the industry (e.g., Chapter 50: Silk; Chapter 55: Manmade Staple Fibers; Chapter 57: Carpets). The basic code contains 4-digit headings and 6-digit subheadings. In the United States, duty rates are 8 digits; statistical suffixes are 10 digits.

Hazardous Materials- A substance or material capable of posing an unreasonable risk to health, safety, and property when transported in commerce. Title 49, Code of Federal Regulation (US) Transportation—Parts 100-199, govern the transportation of hazardous materials. Hazardous materials may be transported domestically, but they must be classified as Dangerous Goods when transported internationally by air. Also see Restricted Articles and Dangerous Goods.

Import License- A document required and issued by some national governments authorizing the importation of goods into their individual countries.

Import Service- See Export Service.

In Bond- Applied to airfreight coming into the United States, In Bond designates a procedure under US Customs. Clearance of cargo is postponed until the cargo reaches an inland Customs point rather than subjecting the cargo to clearance procedures at the first arriving United States gateway airport where the process might be more time consuming. The procedure is so named because the cargo moves under the carrier’s bond (financial liability assured by the carrier) from the gateway airport and remains “In Bond” until Customs releases the cargo at the inland Customs point (airport).

Informal Entry- A simplified import entry procedure accepted at the option of Customs for any non-commercial shipment, baggage, and any commercial shipment not over $1250 ($250 for most Textiles) in value. No bond is required for informal entry.

Interline- The movement of a shipment via two or more carriers. See Intermodal Compatibility.

Integrated Cargo Service- A blend of all segments of the cargo system providing the combined services of air carrier, forwarder, ground handling, and agents.

I.T. In Transit manifest- The document (CF7512) which moves merchandise under bond from one point (port or airport) to another.

Intermodal Compatibility- The capability that enables a shipment to be transferred from one form of transport to another, as from airplane to highway truck, to railway freight car, to ocean vessel. Some aircraft in service today have the capability for intermodal exchange of the large types of standard containers currently used in surface transport.

International Air Transport Association (IATA)- The trade and service organization for airlines of more than 100 countries serving international routes. IATA activities on behalf of shippers in international airfreight include development of containerization programs, freight handling techniques and for some airlines, uniform rates and rules. For information:

International Air Transport Association
2000 Peel Street
Montreal, Quebec

International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)- The International Aviation Organization of Governments is an agency of the United Nations organized to insure orderly worldwide technical development of civil aviation. For information:

International Civil Aviation Organization
International Aviation Square
1000 Sherbrooke Street West
PO Box 400
Montreal, Quebec

JIT (Just In Time)- The principle of production and inventory control that prescribes precise controls for the movement of raw materials, component parts, and work-in-progress. Goods arrive when needed – just in time – for production or use rather than becoming expensive inventory that occupies costly warehouse space.

Letter of Credit (L/C)- A document issued by a bank per instructions by a buyer of goods authorizing the seller to draw a specified sum of money under specified terms, usually the receipt by the bank of certain shipping documents, within a given time.

Lot Labels- Labels attached to each piece of multiple lot shipment for identification purposes.

Lower Deck Containers- Carrier owned containers specially designed as an integral part of the aircraft to fit in the cargo compartments (lower deck) of a wide body aircraft.

Marks- Information placed on the outer surface of shipping containers or packages such as address labels, box specifications, caution, or directional warnings.

Minimum Charge- The lowest rate applicable on each type of air cargo service no matter how small the shipment.

N.E.S.- Abbreviation for Not Elsewhere Specified. Often appears in airfreight tariffs. For example: “advertising matter, N.E.S.,” “printed matter, N.E.S.,” indicating that the rate stated in the tariff applies to all commodities within the commodity group except those appearing under their own rate. The abbreviation N.E.S., as used in airfreight tariffs, is comparable to the abbreviations N.O.I.B.N. (not otherwise indexed by numbers) and N.O.S. (not otherwise specified).

Neutral Air Waybill- A standard air waybill without identification of issuing carrier.

Port of Entry- Any place designated by act of US Congress, executive order of the President of the United States, or order of the US Secretary of the Treasury. A US Customs officer is assigned at the Port of Entry with authority to accept entries of merchandise, to collect duties, and to enforce the various provisions of the US Customs laws.

Prepaid Charges- The transportation trade practice under which the shipper pays transportation charges.

Priority Airfreight- Reserved airfreight or air express service wherein shipments have a priority after mail and the small package services. Any size or weight allowed within airfreight service limits is acceptable. Advanced reservations are permitted for movement on a given flight and in some cases a partial refund is paid the shipper if the shipment is not moved on the flight specified.

Proforma- When coupled with the title of another document (proforma invoice, proforma manifest), it means an informal document presented in advance of the arrival for preparation of the required documentation in order to satisfy a Customs requirement.

Proof of Delivery (POD)- Information provided to payor containing name of person who signed for the package with the date and time of delivery.

Restricted Articles- An airline term meaning a hazardous material as defined by Title 49, US Code of Federal Regulations and Air Transport Restricted Articles Circular 6-D. Restricted articles may be transported domestically and be classified dangerous goods when transported internationally by air. Also see Dangerous Goods and Hazardous Material.

RYE EXPRESS LOGISTICS, LCC - Your #1 choice for all your shipping needs.

Shipper’s Exportation Declaration- Form required for all US exports with declared value for US Customs greater than $2,500. Also required for shipments requiring a US Department of Commerce validated export license or US Department of State license regardless of value of goods. Prepared by a shipper indicating the value, weight, destination, and other basic information about the shipment.

Shipper’s Letter of Instruction- A form used by a shipper to authorize an airline to issue an air waybill on the shipper’s behalf. The form contains all details of the shipment and authorizes the airline to sign the air waybill in the name of the shipper.

Signature Service- A service designed to provide continuous responsibility for the custody of shipments in transit, so named because a signature is required from each person handling the shipment at each stage of its transmit from origin to destination.

Small Package Service- A specialized service to guarantee the delivery of small parcels within specified express time limits, e.g., same day or next day. This traffic is subject to size and weight limitations. Air carriers that also transport passengers will accept these packages at the airport ticket counters with delivery at destination baggage claim area. Many carriers provide door-to-door service on a 24-hour basis.

Specific Commodity Rate- Rate applicable to certain classes of commodities, usually commodities moving in volume shipments. Hence, specific commodity rates are usually lower than the general commodity rate between the same pair of cities.

Tariff- A document setting for the applicable rules, rates and charges for the movement of goods. A tariff sets forth a contract of carriage for the shipper, the consignee, and the carrier. In addition to the domestic tariffs published by Airline Tariff Publishing Company, some airlines also publish their own tariffs covering special services. International tariffs containing freight rates of the US international carriers are published by the US flag carriers.

T&E: Transportation and Exportation (on CF7512)- Transportation of goods in bond from one port to another for export.

Temporary Importation Under Bond (TIB)- Temporary admission into the United States under a conditional bond for article not imported for sale or for sale on approval.

Through Bill of Lading- A single bill of lading covering both the domestic and international carriage of an export shipment. For example, an air waybill is essentially a through bill of lading used for air shipments. Many ocean shipments require two separate documents: an inland bill of lading for domestic carriage and an ocean bill of lading for international carriage. Through bill of lading, therefore, cannot be used.

TIB- See Temporary Importation Under Bond.

Time Definite Delivery- The range of service performance standards offered by airfreight carriers that permit the customer to select a specific time frame for delivery based on requirement for service and economy. These service standards provide door-to-door (pickup and delivery) schedule patterns based on same day, next day, second or third day delivery needs.

Total Cost of Distribution- The sum total of all the costs incurred in the distribution of goods. The total cost of distribution includes:

bulletTransportation charges
bulletInventory carrying costs
bulletWarehousing expenses
bulletProduct obsolescence

The speed of airfreight facilitates a more rapid turnover of inventory. This means a more rapid return on inventory investment, the elimination or drastic reduction of warehousing costs, the elimination of the risk of product obsolescence, and the avoidance of cost items such as inventory taxes. Packaging costs are lower because of the protection afforded by the aircraft and, increasingly, because of container usage. The lower incidence of damage and pilferage in airfreight, as compared with surface modes, reduces insurance costs.

Usually, but not always, air freight charges from point A to point B may be higher than surface charges. However, savings on the other elements in the total cost of distribution often result in a net saving via air. See Tradeoffs.

Tracking / Tracing- A carrier’s system of recording movement intervals of shipments from origin to destination.

Tradeoffs- Interaction between related activities such as the offsetting of higher costs in one area with reduced costs or other benefits in another. In airfreight, the classic tradeoff is one of time versus money but there are many others in the total cost of distribution.

Transit Air Cargo Manifest (TACM)- Procedures under which air cargo imports move through the gateway city to the city of final US Customs destination for collection of duty and other import processing. The TACM expedites shipment movements, reduces gateway congestion, and saves expenses for importers, the Customs Bureau and the airlines.

Truck / Air Service- The surface movement of airfreight to and from airports, and origin and destination points beyond the terminal area of pickup and delivery service. Directory listing cities served is available through local airline offices.

U.L.D. (Unit Load Device)- Term commonly used when referring to containers and pallets.

Valuation Charges- Transportation charges assessed shippers who declare a value of goods higher than the value of carriers’ limits of liability. See Declared Value for Carriage.

Warsaw Convention- An international multilateral treaty that uniformly regulates the conditions of international transportation by air. Among other things, it establishes the international liability of air carriers and establishes the monetary limits for loss, damage and delay.

Weight Break- Levels at which the air freight rate per 100 pounds decreases because of substantial increases in the weight of the shipment. Examples of levels at which weight breaks occur (in pounds) are 100, 500, 1000, 3000, 5000 and 10000.

Yield- The air transport revenue derived per unit of traffic carried in air transportation. Examples: Revenue per freight ton mile and revenue per passenger mile flown.

ZIP Code- A numerical code, established by the US Postal Service, used for the purpose of routing and identifying delivery zones. Some airlines apply this code for freight in the same manner.

Zone- Any one of a number of sections or districts of the United States used to establish proper rates for parcels, mail, and pickup and delivery.