A.A.R. – Against All Risks (insurance term)

A.1. – First Class Condition

Access – Capable of being reached. In terms of moving and storage, the term refers to “How accessible is the property?” For example, is there room to park a vehicle, the distance from the vehicle to the front door, the availability of lifts, how many floors the building has, etc. All these factors have an influence on access.

Acceptance – An acceptance is a time draft that the drawee has either stamped or written the word accepted across the face of the draft and then signs the acceptance notation. If a bank is the drawee (the party that the draft is drawn on), a Banker’s Acceptance is created. If the drawee is an individual or company, it is referred to as a Trade Acceptance.

Accessorial Charge aka “Accessorials” – A charge made by a carrier for other than basic transportation. Accessorial means a particular service or condition other than the basic transportation, which is usually described in a commodity description, TLI, or Tariff Rule, and for which a charge may be added to the basic ocean freight rate.

Accessorial Services – Services apart from transportation. Includes items and services such as packing, unpacking, appliance service, custom crating, extra labor, long carry, etc. There are additional charges for these services/items.

Account – The organization or company that finally pays for the whole move, usually the employer of the transferee.

Actual Cash Value – Value of goods after depreciation is taken into account.

A.D. – After Date

ADD/CVD – Antidumping and Countervailing Duties – When Commerce determines goods are being imported at rates below the cost to manufacture and the importation is damaging, an Anti-Dumping/Countervailing Duty can be asserted.

AD. VAL. – Ad Valorem – According to Value

Advised credit – A letter of credit that has been authenticated by the advising bank, insuring that the issuing bank did indeed issue the letter of credit. The advising bank does not take on any responsibility to effect payment as they would if they had confirmed the letter of credit. However, they will most likely assist in facilitating payment.

Agent – Usually another moving company appointed to act as a partner in your move. The most likely situation is that your mover will appoint someone at destination to receive your shipment, clear it through customs, and arrange final delivery. The agent’s services will be included in your quotation.

All inclusive aka “all-in” – A shipping rate that includes all shipping and accessorial charges.

Amendment – The account party may contact the issuing bank in writing requesting that a term or condition in the original letter of credit be changed or deleted, or that a new term or condition be added to the letter of credit. According to the uniform customs and practices (UCP) 500, amendments must be accepted or rejected in their entirety. In other words, if the amendment contains more than one change, and you like one change but not the other, you have to either accept or reject the entire amendment.

Anti-Bribery, Money Laundering, and Corrupt Practices – Arpin International Group’s policy which acknowledges that the company has a zero tolerance policy towards bribery and corruption. A violation of this policy may result in severe civil and criminal penalties.

Appliance Service – Service provided to certain mechanical items prior to moving (i.e., unhooking washer/dryer). See Accessorial Services.

ArpinACESSM – Arpin International Group’s service partners are called ArpinACES (Agents Committed to Excellent Service). To ensure consistency in delivering high quality services around the world, specific policies and procedures are required to be adhered to by all ArpinACES.

Assignment of proceeds – The beneficiary of a letter of credit may instruct the negotiating bank, in writing, to pay all or a portion of the proceeds due them to a third party. The request to assign the proceeds should be accompanied by the original letter of credit and the fee that the negotiating bank may charge for this service.

Beneficiary – The party that the letter of credit is issued in favor of. The beneficiary may also be referred to as the seller, exporter, supplier, or vendor.

Bill of Lading – This is your contract with the carrier. It is your receipt for your goods and the contract for their transportation. Your signature on this document acknowledges that your goods have been loaded on the moving van and “released to the carrier.”

Binding Quote – A guaranteed price based on the inventory.

Bonded Warehouse – A warehouse that meets with local customs specifications and allows shipments to be stored pending clearance by customs.

Booking Agent – The booking agent establishes the contract with the customer. Booking agents order services from the origin agents, trucking companies, steamship lines, customs brokers, destination agents, third party service companies, insurance companies, etc. They provide all participating suppliers with the necessary information, documentation, and progress reports. Bookers invoice the customer and are responsible for payment of all approved supplier expenses.

Bubble Wrap – Bubble wrap is a good pliable packing material that offers a high level of protection. However, use of this material does require a certain amount of precaution. Because it retains moisture, it should not be applied directly on furniture. Unlike paper products, bubble plastic is not recyclable and therefore, the indiscriminate use of this material may be harmful to the environment.

CAF – Currency adjustment factor – an accessorial charge to compensate for fluctuations in currencies.

Carnet – A customs document that permits the party holding the carnet to carry or send merchandise temporarily into certain countries without paying duties or posting bonds. Used frequently for trade shows.

C.E. – Consumption entry

CFR or CNF Cost of Goods and Freight – Shipper is responsible for paying the freight at destination.

CFS – Container freight station – a location where the carrier controls the loading and/or unloading of containers.

Chargeable Weight – The weight used by an airline to determine the air-freight charge.

C.O.D. – Cash-On-Delivery, where the payment is made upon the delivery of the goods.

Consignee – The party appearing on a bill of lading to which the carrier has been instructed to deliver the goods.

Consolidator – A company or person that will collect less than a container load of shipments from moving companies and ship them to destination once a container load has been obtained.

Container – a modular steel box that is designed to hold goods during transport. Containers exist in rare as well as standard sizes (specified by ISO), which can be used for transport on sea and land.

Contour Export Wrap – The contour export wrap means that the wrapping material follows the exterior contour of the item. All legs, arms, backs, sides, tops, etc., are wrapped in exactly the same shape as the actual article.

Corrugated Cardboard – This sturdy material is used to protect the exterior of large objects as well as fragile items. It is recommended that items which can be easily scratched are first wrapped using two layers of paper before applying the corrugated cardboard.

C/O or Certificate of Origin – A document certifying that the goods described were from the area stated on the certificate. It is usually notarized and certified by the local chamber of commerce.

Cost per 100 lb. – A rate given on the estimated weight of your belongings.

Cost per cubic metre/cubic feet – A rate given on the estimated space your belongings will fill on a truck or container.

C.P. or Charter Party – This is a common expression used in sea freight. The hiring of a vessel or ship is referred to as a “charter.” So, when a vessel is “chartered,” it means that the ship owner has hired it out to a second party (the ship itself would be referred to as being “on charter” and so forth). The terms and conditions of the charter, that is to say the contractual terms and conditions of hire, are documented in a contract called a “charter party.” Note that the expression is sometimes written as one word. These days, the underlying contracts are normally standard formats with established conditions for the trade, cargo type, trade route or vessel type employed. The terms and conditions of carriage are recorded on a document (the charter party) separate from the transport document, the transport document looses one of its traditional attributes (that of being “evidence” of the contract of carriage). So, if a documentary credit was involved, the bank may call for both the charter party and the transport document, or at the very least, require the transport document to make reference to the charter party.

Crate – A timber case for an overseas shipment (often referred to as a liftvan).

C-TPAT – Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism. A government-business partnership established in 2001 to combat the threat of terrorist attacks and protect international supply chains from threats involving the global trade community.

C.R. – Carrier’s risk

Customer – The recipient of a good, service, product, or idea, obtained from a seller, vendor, or supplier for monetary or other valuable consideration.

Customs Broker – The customs broker clears goods through customs for importers and exporters. This involves the preparation of documents and/or electronic submissions, the calculation and payment of taxes, duties, and excises, and facilitating communication between government authorities and importers and exporters. In some countries, customs brokers are not needed. In those instances, customs can be cleared by the local moving company.

Customs Clearance – Formal inspection procedures carried out before allowing a shipment into a country.

CWT – This abbreviation stands for the rate or charge per 100 pounds.

CY/CY or Container Yard to Container Yard – A container yard is a location where containers may be parked, picked up, or delivered full or empty. A CY may further be a place of loading (stuffing) or unloading and/or where an ocean carrier accepts custody and control of cargo.

Declared Value – Value the owner declares his goods to be for the purpose of insurance. This will form the basis of your insurance coverage. It is important that the amount declared reflects the value of your belongings at destination.

De-consolidator – A company or person that will receive a consolidated shipment at the destination port and break up the consolidated shipment back into individual shipments.

Demurrage – Charges caused by containers being stored at port or container yard beyond specified free time.

Density Factor – A ratio of weight and volume.

Destination – Location of the final delivery of a shipment.

Destination Agent – The destination agent is the company selected to perform destination moving services including transportation to residence, unloading, unwrapping of furniture, set-up of furniture (excluding third party), unpacking cartons, placing contents on the closest flat surface, and debris removal on the day of delivery. In countries where customs brokers are not needed, destination agents can also customs-clear shipments.

Detention – Charges caused by containers being kept outside port or container yard beyond specified free time.

Door-to-Door – Transporting the shipper’s goods from their residence at origin to their residence at destination. This type of move will increase the degree of control you have over the move and subsequently minimize claims.

Door-to-Port – Transporting the shipper’s goods from their residence at origin until the port at destination. This tends to happen if the shipper has decided to arrange transport with a destination agent of their choice from the destination port, and tends to be done by a shipper when they want to save money.

D.O.T. – Department of Transportation – U.S. cabinet-level agency responsible for domestic transportation and U.S. inland portions of international shipments. The D.O.T. is also the parent agency of the U.S. Coast Guard.

Drawback – The ability to be reimbursed for some or all of the duties paid on imported merchandise at the time of re-exportation.

Dray – The trucking movement of a container.

Duty – Import tax imposed by customs – the harmonized tariff system (hts) provides duty rates for virtually every item that exists. The hts is a reference manual that is the size of an unabridged dictionary. Experts spend years learning how to properly classify an item in order to determine its correct duty rate. Duty can be imposed by ad valorum (a percentage of the value) and/or a flat charge per unit.

E&O – Errors and Omissions (insurance term)

EAON – Except As Otherwise Noted

EAR – Export Administration Regulations

EIN – Exporter’s Identification Number – (federal id no.)

ERC – Employee Relocation Council

Export Wrapping – Method of packing household and personal effects for transportation overseas. Usually involves heavier and more specialized materials.

FAIM – FIDI Accredited International Mover

FCL – Full Container Load

FEDEMAC – Federation of European Moving Associations

Final Walkthrough – When the requested work has been completed, the shipper should accompany the driver or crew leader on a final walkthrough of every room to verify all services have been performed to the shipper’s satisfaction. The shipper should verify that no damage was done to residence during the packing/loading or delivery process. If there is damage, it should be noted on the In-Home Pre-existing Conditions Report.

FMC – Federal Maritime Commission

FOB or Free On Board – Seller is responsible for delivering goods to a specified port and the cost of loading goods onboard the vessel. This term must be clarified by stating a specific location and type of conveyance (i.e., fob vessel, New Orleans, LA).

Force Majeure – A natural disaster, riot, terrorist act, or war which is totally beyond a party’s control and prevents them from fulfilling obligations under a contract.

Freight Forwarder – A person or company that organizes shipments for individuals or corporations to get goods from origin to destination. A forwarder does not move the goods, but acts as an expert in supply chain management. A forwarder contracts with carriers to move cargo. Freight can be booked on a variety of shipping providers, including ships, airplanes, trucks, and railroads.

FTZ or Foreign Trade Zone or Free Trade Zone – An area where goods can enter the country duty free. The goods can be stored, used, or sold while in the zone without incurring duties. Duties are only paid when the goods leave the trade zone ftz as a foreign trade zone.

Full Container Load (FCL) – A container carrying your belongings exclusively, with specified move dates as agreed with your mover.

Full Cover – Detailed insurance cover; usually includes loss, theft, fire, and breakage (breakage may be restricted to items packed by your professional mover). Full cover may carry excess or deductible, maximum limits on total value, or certain types of items, pairs and sets, mechanical derangement, and specific exclusions e.g., money, stamp collection, jewelry, etc. Always read details carefully.

Gantry Crane – A big crane used to lift cargo from the pier to a vessel or vice versa.

Groupage – Filling a container with shipments that are less than container load on their own. The entire container is filled by your own shipment and as such you act as your own consolidator.

HAWB – House Airway Bill

HHGFAA – Household Goods Forwarders Association of America

IAM – International Association of Movers

IATA – International Air Transport Association

Insurance Certificate – The official insurance document given to you by the insurance company. You will need this in the event of a claim.

Insurer – An insurer is the insurance company that provides financial protection for goods during transportation and storage. Transit insurance must be in place to protect goods from loss or damage.

International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code – Accepted as an international guideline to the safe transportation or shipment of dangerous goods or hazardous materials by water on vessel. IMDG code is intended to protect crew members and to prevent marine pollution in the safe transportation of hazardous materials by vessel. It is recommended to governments for adoption or for use as the basis for national regulations.

International Move Coordinator – An International Move Coordinator manages import, export, and third-country moves for corporate customers, agents, government organizations, and the military. They are the main point of contact for the customer as well as all relevant suppliers throughout the moving process.

Inventory – Numbered list of every carton and piece of furniture shipped, along with notations on the condition of each piece. The document is signed by the customer at origin to acknowledge inventory and furniture condition, and at destination to acknowledge receipt of all goods.

Inventory Check-off – This is an extremely important step in the delivery process and ensures that all shipment items have been delivered and are in the same condition as when they were in the origin residence. The shipper is responsible for checking off each shipment item as it is brought into their new home using either the inventory forms or the Shipper Inventory Checklist.

International Trade Controls – Regulations governing international trade transactions, such as imports, exports, and international financial transactions.

Kraft Paper – This brown-colored paper is slightly stronger than newspaper-quality paper and is used to wrap items that do not need much cushioning.

Land Bridge – A land bridge is a form of multimodal transportation, which would incorporate an overland route to a land-locked destination.

LCL – Less than Container Load; When your shipment does not fill a complete shipping container.

Liftvans – A crate used in the packing of your belongings.

Line Hauler – Transports goods from terminal to terminal.

Manifest Confidentiality Process – Current U.S. law allows independent third-party companies to access vessel manifests and summary statistical reports of imports and exports, including household goods shipments. Information eligible for disclosure includes the shipper’s name, address, passport number, and the name and address to which the shipment is consigned. To request this information remain confidential, the owner of the goods or its third-party authorized agent must complete a manifest confidentiality form and send it to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

Marine Insurance – Insurance specifically to cover your belongings whilst in transit over long distances and/or across water by vehicle, ship, or aircraft. The policy will cover specific marine risks.

MAWB – Master Airway Bill

Moving Guide – A document provided to transferees explaining the moving process in detail.

MTC – Multi-modal Transport Carrier

MTO – Multimodal Transport Operator

Multimodal Transport – Multimodal transport covers the door-to-door movement of goods, under one issued waybill, using various means of transport (train, ship, truck, air).

NVOCC – Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier

Ocean Carriers / Air Carriers – The carriers that are responsible for transporting the shipment from terminal to terminal by sea or air.

Order for Service – Document signed by the customer, prior to loading, designating the moving services they want performed, and signed by the carrier acknowledging the acceptance of the move.

Origin – The location where the shipment is picked up.

Origin Agent – The moving company appointed to handle your move at origin responsible for all services at origin, including performing the estimate, signing contracts, packing and loading of household goods, and dispatch of a shipment. The origin agent is responsible for servicing the shipment according to the instructions given by the International Move Coordinator.

O.S. – Overstuff; refers to padded or upholstered furniture items (i.e., sofas, easy chairs, recliners).

Packed By Owner (PBO) – When you choose to pack your belongings yourself, either into cartons supplied by the mover or into your own boxes. Insurance companies often refuse to insure goods packed by their owners.

Packers – Persons in charge of packing, wrapping, and loading the goods at origin and unpacking, unwrapping and unloading the goods at destination.

Packing List – This document lists all the goods that are packed in a shipment and has four (4) main purposes: It is used to check the goods at all stages of handling; as a receipt, therefore it is very important for the customer to sign that they are in agreement when the goods are collected and unpacked; as an attachment to the insurance certificate as it is evidence that the goods were shipped and their condition noted at the time of packing; for customs clearance as proof of the goods which are being imported.

Paper Blankets – Paper blankets are brown paper on the outside and soft material on the inside.

PDT – Post Diploma Training (context: offered by the FIDI Academy)

Port Agent – The port agent is in charge of handling the cargo at the port, receiving and/or releasing it to the forwarders, carriers, haulers, or owner of the goods.

Port-to-Door – Transporting the shipper’s goods from a port to destination residence. This is quite unusual; these moves are mostly taken care of by national companies contracted for a particular international move.

Port-to-Port – Transporting the shipper’s goods from the origin port to the destination port. Generally, these types of moves are booked directly with a forwarder.

Prohibited Items – Laws prohibit certain items in import/export/storage shipments. Including prohibited items in shipments may result in damage, unnecessary delays at customs, or confiscation of all or part of a shipment, and/or criminal charges. A list of prohibited items is provided within the Guide to Moving; questions regarding specific item(s) should be directed to your International Move Coordinator.

Reciprocation – Occurring by turns; sending goods to an agent who then reciprocates (returns the business) by sending goods to you.

Registration Number – Number assigned exclusively to a shipment for recordkeeping and tracking. Also referred to as “Reg Number.”

Relocation Management Company – A company that provides a combination of relocation services to boost employee/employer productivity and satisfaction, while supporting effective program management and cost control. Services may include employee relocation, home sale and purchase, household goods shipping, move management, temporary housing, settling-in services, intercultural and language training, accounting and management reporting, etc.

Replacement Value – Value of goods equal to the replacement cost at destination.

Ro-Ro – Roll on, Roll off

Routing – The route the shipment will take to the eventual destination (the route itself as well as the mode of transportation and type of carrier service).

Shipper – The person (customer) whose goods are being moved.

Shrink Wrap – Plastic sheeting which is wrapped around large items (i.e., sofas) to decrease or eliminate soiling.

Storage In Transit (SIT) – Temporary storage of your household goods in the warehouse of the moving company, pending further transportation.

Surface Shipment – A shipment that travels by sea (FCL or LCL).

Survey Visit – To provide you with an accurate quote, the moving company will send a sales consultant to your home to assess the volume or weight of the goods to be removed.

Swap Body – Type of freight container built to be lifted from the top and specifically designed to be used for road transport. Generally, this container type is made in the same dimensions as sea-shipping containers. The swap body has four collapsible legs to ease the transition from one truck to another and to allow for leaving the swap body on its own. These types of containers tend to have more than one door/opening to facilitate loading and unloading.

Third Party Services – Some movers offer to arrange/coordinate additional professional services e.g., plumbers, house cleaners, waterbed dismantling/assembling, carpenters, maid service, etc.

Tissue Paper – This paper’s principal characteristic is its softness and thinness that makes it suitable to protect fragile items.

Transit Time – Time it takes to get goods from point A to point B. In the moving industry, this usually includes the packing and unpacking.

Trucker – Individual responsible for moving a shipment by truck between the warehouse and the terminal and sometimes from one agent to another. A trucker may also be responsible for performing delivery services. They require dock receipts or delivery orders to pick up or deliver shipments to/from airports or ocean ports/terminals.

ULD – Unit Load Device

USP – Unique Selling Point

Van Lines – Van lines work through a network of affiliated agents to transport their long distance domestic moves. Removals are coordinated by the van lines to reduce costs and maximize available capacity. Van lines are most prevalent in the United States. In Europe, van lines also exist, but due to geographic differences, they work somewhat differently than in the U.S. They occur more as commercial groups of independent moving companies who coordinate their long distance moves on a voluntary basis. Van lines provide agents with administrative services, both within sales and forwarding, marketing assistance, rates, routes, agent relations, and insurance. A van-lines agent can be the booker, the origin agent, and/or the destination agent.

Warehouse Manager – The warehouse manager is responsible for handling the shipment at the warehouse while it is in transit. The warehouse manager is also responsible for checking the condition of the goods when they are received.

White Newsprint Paper – White newspaper-quality paper is the most commonly used packing material for the protection of articles. It is an excellent cushioning material, resistant to a high degree of handling in addition to being porous, which guarantees ventilation of packed articles.

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