Logistics abbreviations

Over time, in any profession appears shortenings that are called abbreviations. To feel comfortable in the work environment, they need to be learned. There are many abbreviations in the field of logistics. Having studied the international abbreviations, which are usually of English origin, it will be easier for a specialist to mix well with people working in this field and to communicate with colleagues, carriers and contractors. Here is a list of abbreviations required to study in the field of logistics.

ATA – (Actual Time of Arrival)

Is time when the mode of transport is arrived at its destination. It can be determined and noted in the documents only after arrival of the transport.

ATD – (Actual Time of Departure)

Is time when the mode of transport is dispatched from the point of shipment. It can be determined and noted in the documents only after shipment.

AWB – (Air Way Bill)

Is an air consignment note. A document that should mandatory escort the cargo moving by air. It contains information about the consignor and consignee (registered address, full name), airport of departure and arrival, time of departure and arrival (previously stipulated), type of goods, type of packaging, its dimensions and others. This document is usually completed by the consignor or the freight forwarder.


Is an air waybill, the number of which was assigned by the airline. It has the form “xxx-xxxxxxxx”.


Is a type of the air waybill, the number of which was not initially assigned by the airline. In this case, it is later assigned by a cargo agent.


Is a fuel fee for transportation by sea, which is an additional increase in pay. It is optional and applies in some specific cases. Fuel prices affect the amount of the fee.

B/L – (Bill of Lading)

Is a letter of consignment. It confirms that the shipment has been accepted by the carrier, who, in turn, is responsible for it to the port of destination. The bill of lading should indicate the type of cargo, as well as the amount taken on board, ports of departure and arrival, data about the consignor and consignee, such as the full name of the sea vessel, country, legal address and other information.


Is a compensation to be paid to carriers during shipping. The amount of this allowance directly depends on the current exchange rate.


Is a terminal charge for groupage, i.e., when the consignor has not filled one container completely, and the container contains goods from different consignors intended for different consignees.

C/O – (Certificate of Origin)

Certificate of Origin of Goods – an official document confirming the origin or the goods. This information is necessary for the customs declarant to determine the customs duty for importation of goods.

Carnet TIR

Is the TIR (Transports Internationaux Routiers) Carnet. It refers to customs accompanying documents intended for goods that are transported by road sealed by customs seaboards. These seals shall remain intact when the consignment is delivered to the consignee.

CFS – (Container Freight Station)

Is the place where the containers are loaded and unloaded.


Is a type of consignment note. It is a mandatory document for international transportation by road. The consignment note should contain the data of the consignor and consignee, such as name, country, address and contact telephone number. The place of loading and unloading, list of documents to be sent with the goods (invoice, packing list, etc.), number of places, type of packaging, type of goods and other information are also indicated.

CNEE – (Consignee)

Is a person receiving the goods. This information should be indicated in the accompanying documents. The person is responsible for the goods after receipt. In general, the name of the recipient company is indicated for large shipments.

CNOR – (Consignor)

Is a person sending the goods. It always indicates in the accompanying documents. He is responsible for the goods prior to dispatch.


Is the type of container indicating that this container belongs to the carrier of the goods.


Demurrage is an additional fee that is collected by the carrier from the consignee or freight agent. It is charged for exceeding transport idle time set for the signing of the transportation contract.


Container Yard. A place where the freight containers can be stored before shipment to the consignee and after arriving at the port of discharge.

DGR – (Dangerous Goods Regulations)

Reglement International de Merchandises Dangereuses. Dangerous goods are divided into different classes according to the degree of danger. Also, dangerous goods are divided according to such criteria as flammability, explosion risk during deformation of the package, acids, solvents and others. Depending on this, a vehicle is selected that can transport a specific cargo in the safest way. Dangerous goods are acids, mastics, fuels, aerosols and others.

DIM — (Dimensions)

Is an overall dimension of cargo that must be indicated in the packing list, commercial invoice, bill of loading and other shipping documents. The carrier shall recheck this data when receiving the goods from the consignor.

ETA – (Estimated Time of Arrival)

Is time when the cargo is expected to arrive at its destination. It is determined in advance and may vary according to the changes in the conditions of transportation and current situations. It is this time, as determined in advance, that is indicated in the consignment notes.

ETD – (Estimated Time of Departure)

Is time when the shipment is expected from the place of departure. It is determined in advance and may vary according to the changes in the conditions of transportation and current situations. This time is indicated in the bill of lading.


Is an export declaration. It is completed before the export of goods from the EU countries and confirms the fact of this export.

FCL – (Full Container Load)

The term means that the goods are delivered in a container fully loaded by one customer. That is, all goods in the container are sent by one consignor and will be received by one consignee.

FEU – (Forty foot equivalent Unit)

Is a Forty-foot container.


International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations.


Is the common unit used for measuring length, foot.

HQ – (High Cube)

Is a 40 foot container that is higher than the standard 40 foot container.


International Air Transport Association.

IG – (In Gauge)

The term to indicate that the dimensions of the transported goods comply with the standards established for the corresponding cargo equipment.

INV – (Commercial Invoice)

Is a commercial invoice. The invoice issued by a seller or distributor for the international transport of goods. It indicates the cost and quantity of the goods, type of goods, name, country and address of the consignor and consignee, terms of the deal and other information.

L/C – (Letter of Credit)

Is an official document – an agreement that guarantees that the payment will be made at the specified time in the agreed amount.

LCL – (Less than Container Load)

Is the transportation when several goods are combined in one container. The goods in the container are loaded by different consignors and are intended to be received by several consignees.

LO / LO – (Lift on / Lift off)

Is a method of loading ships, meaning lifting and lowering of cargo.

LT – (Local Time)

Is a local time.


Is a document containing descriptive information about all goods carried in actual transportation on a given vehicle.


Is an especially large vessel. It serves ports with a large cargo turnover.

n/n – (nоn-negotiable document)

Is a document indicating that there is no right to receive the goods.


Is a carrier who doesn’t own tonnage. He is a public carrier. His duties include transportation of goods and, if necessary, the issuance of any documents. However, he does not own this goods.

OOG – (Out of Gauge)

The term indicating that the dimensions of the cargo to be transported exceed the standards for the corresponding equipment.


Is a twenty or forty foot container with tarpaulin instead of a roof. Abbreviation from the phrase “Open Top”, which literally means “open top”.

PACK – (Packing List)

Is a packing list. A shipping document containing information about the quantity, weight and dimensions of the goods, type of packaging and others.

POD – (Port of Destination)

Is a port of destination. It is indicated in the bill of lading.

POL – (Port of Loading)

Is a port of departure. Must be indicated in the bill of lading.


Is a type of vessel, meaning that the vessel has the technical ability to take on board rolling equipment loaded with the help of tugs and other supporting equipment. The abbreviation is created from the English phrases Roll-on / Roll-off, which means to “roll on” and to “roll off”, respectively.

T/S – (Trans shipment)

Is a transportation overload. Sequential execution of certain operations aimed at moving cargo from the one place to another. It is an important stage in the transportation of goods in logistics, as it is rarely possible to deliver goods directly from the consignor to the consignee by one vehicle. This is usually the case for road transport when reloading into another vehicle is not provided. In other cases, overloading is always used.

T/T – (Transit Time)

Is a transit time of transportation.


Is a transit customs declaration. It is a mandatory document for goods that are not produced in the countries of the European Economic Union, but staying in the territory of these countries. It is drawn up when the imported goods are placed under the customs transit procedure.

TEU – (Twenty foot Equivalent Unit)

Is a twenty-foot container.


Terminal Handling Charges.


Is an airport code with three signs.

ULD – (Unit Load Device)

Is the means of loading which are used to move something on a plane.

Knowledge of common abbreviations and markings is extremely important in logistics. They help contractors in different countries to understand each other and avoid mistakes that can lead to a variety of difficulties. This knowledge is now mandatory in large logistics companies, as it ensures smooth and timely deliveries of goods at the lowest cost.