Freight & Customs Glossary

Customs agent

Someone who is employed by the government to monitor and inspect people and goods that are imported and exported. Their job roles usually vary dependent on the country that they are employed by.


External Temporary Storage Facility

Facilities (like us) that are used by freight forwarders to house goods that are yet to be approved or inspected by customs. A typical temporary time frame is around 90 days.

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New Computerised Transit Systems

A beneficial electronic transit declaration system which enables the movement of goods under the common transit convention. In order to participate in the NCTS.

GFS has had to meet very stringent criteria, we are proud to help our clients streamline their process and save time.

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T1 & T2

Dependent on where you pay your customs duties, you require a T1 or T2 form to declare the goods in the country of destination (T2) or to be able to move non-community goods between countries (T1). Get in touch if you are unsure as we can help you to decipher the requirements, unique to your case.


An Export Accompanying Document which is necessary for any notes required. This includes the Box MRN. You can find the full instructions here.


This range of forms are required for the import and export of goods. It stands for Single Administrative Document and there is 8 parts (C88(1-8)). Let us know if you would like more information around this.


Also known as a CHIEF S8 report; this usually accompanies a drawback claim form containing information to support the claim.


‘Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight’ system


Short for ‘Movement Reference Number’. This will be automatically generated every time a declaration is submitted and is critical for the audit process.


Once the goods are shared out to suppliers or the public.

Bonded warehousing

An approved place where foreign goods can be stored until duties are paid and the items are cleared by customs.

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In reference to any logistical topics, freight describes transported goods that are usually in bulk. This can refer to national or international travel.


A department of the UK government which was created to manage the collection of taxes and regulating other regimes like minimum wage.


Certificate of Authenticity which will accompany an item to demonstrate the legitimacy of its journey to distribution.

EORI number

An Economic Operators Registration and Identification number is needed when you move goods between certain countries. Learn more, here.

Commodity code

In aim to identify products internationally, these reference numbers are universal and usually included in any import documentation.

Bill of Lading

This may also be called a BoL or BL and indicates the receipt of the shipment by the carrier. It will include lots of key information.

Telex Release

Usually in the form of an email, this is a term used as a notification of the release of cargo at the destination port and has been surrendered at the origin port.


Is a tariff or ‘due’ which is summoned by a Government or political entity.

Port Health

A body of people that are on duty to ensure that only safe goods are imported into the destination country. They also monitor the compliance of other laws including for public health, safeguarding, and trading standards.

Here to help

If you have any questions on the above or would like more in-depth advice, please call or get in touch below and we will be more than happy to help you.

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