The shipping industry is one of the oldest and most important modes of transportation. According to statistics, over 55 000 cargo ships travel every day from one dock to the other, carrying over 20 million containers with different types of goods. This makes them the backbone of international trade. With such a massive flow of goods, shipping one good from one part of the world to the other can be difficult. In order to maintain order and to avoid confusion, shippers are often encouraged to fill a shipping packing list.
What is a shipping packing list?
Just as the name suggests, a shipping packing list refers to a document that summarizes the type of goods you are shipping, the number of goods shipped, and the final destination. The shipping packing list is often created once an individual has booked for shipment. Usually, the list will accompany your shipment and help the freight forwarder, the customs as well as the receivers to visualize the contents of your shipments. Plus, the Shipping packing list facilitates faster clearance of your shipped goods once it reached its destination. Failure to fill in your Shipping packing list can cause delayed clearance at the respective port of destination.
What to include in a Shipping packing list
Generally, there is some mandatory information each shipper is expected to include in their Shipping packing list. This information includes the following:
- The date of shipment
- The shipper’s contact details
- The address of the place of departure
- The address of the place of destination
- The number of packages being shipped
- The description of the individual packages being shipped
- The weight of the individual packages
- The volume of the packages
- The shipments invoice number
- The shipment purchase order number
- The value of the shipment (not mandatory)
- The serial number of the packages (not mandatory)
- Signature of the shipper (not mandatory)
- The dimensions of each freight package
Free Shipping Packing List Templates
Benefits of Shipping Packing List
A Shipping packing list comes with tons of benefits. These include the following:
They help to identify any lost freights. Due to the work intensity associated with the loading and offloading of the freight cargos/containers, it is easy to find some going a miss, especially if they don’t have proper descriptions. However, with the Shipping packing list, tracing such lost cargos is often easy more so with carriers with insurance claims.
Additionally, the Shipping packing list helps facilitate a selective inspection by the customs officials. Usually, before the freights are loaded or offloaded, they do undergo screening to ascertain their legitimacy. Therefore, ports authority finds it easy to carry out selective inspection based on the descriptions given on the Shipping packing list.
The Shipping packing list also helps in providing the receiver with an idea of what to expect from the shipment. This enables the receiver or the buyer to unpack and stock the shipped goods with a lot of ease.
The packing list is also useful, especially when one is seeking to obtain material data sheet for goods termed as hazardous. With this, the goods can be shipped with caution due to their potential hazards. At the same time, the packing list facilitates the insurance of the inland bill of lading.
The list helps the recipient claim goods in the event that they are damaged while en-route. As said earlier, transporting a large number of freights requires utmost attention, order, and keenness. However, there are some cases where the freight can be handled poorly, causing damages. The Shipping packing list can act as a support document to file compensation claims.
The Shipping packing list helps the recipient or cargo buyer to accurately tally and take stock of the number of goods they receive. As a result, it becomes easier for the buyer to make reimbursements.
Frequently Asked Questions
Shipping Packing List is used to provide useful information about the cargo being transported, its quantity, weight, and destination. This list informs the cargo’s recipient, transporter, and the government authority what type of goods the seller sent to the buyer.
No. a Shipping Packing List can be sent independently. However, most people prefer attaching it with the invoice before forwarding it to the buyer.
As a seller, you don’t have to spend much time filling the Shipping Packing List. In most cases, it takes about 20 mins or less to fill the list.
Once you are through with filling the list, you need to put it in the package box together with the cargo package(s) then send them together. When the recipient receives the cargo, they will open the package and countercheck whether the received goods match that included in the list.