Freight and Shipping Terms Glossary
For your convenience, Logistics Worldwide offers a Freight Terms Glossary compiled by the Georgia Institute of Technology in association with the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistics Institute. The glossary includes over 750 freight, shipping and supply chain & logistics terms for all modes of transportation for our visitors and customers. To use the glossary, simply click on the letters corresponding to the word or phrase you are searching for.
Using this glossary can help you determine the definitions of specific acronyms, slang, payment, credit, and other shipping terms. We believe you’ll find all your transportation industry definition of terms in this glossary but if you are unable to find what you are searching for or need clarification, please contact us and we will be more than happy to assist you.
Logistics Worldwide is pleased to provide a glossary of freight and shipping terms for all modes of transportation to our visitors and customers. To use the glossary, click on the letters below corresponding to the word or acronym you are searching for. If you are unable to find what you are searching for, please contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
Abbreviation for "Dangerous and Hazardous" cargo.
Abbreviation for "Doing Business As." A legal term for conducting business under a registered name.
Department of Transportation.
Abbreviation for "Destination Delivery Charge." A charge, based on container size, that is applied in many tariffs to cargo. This charge is considered accessorial and is added to the base ocean freight. This charge covers crane lifts off the vessel, drayage of the container within the terminal and gate fees at the terminal operation.
One leg of a move without a paying cargo load. Usually refers to repositioning an empty piece of equipment.
The number of tons of 2,240 pounds that a vessel can transport of cargo, stores and bunker fuel. It is the difference between the number of tons of water a vessel displaces "light" and the number of tons it displaces when submerged to the "load line."
- Deadweight Cargo
A long ton of cargo that can be stowed in less than 40 cubic feet.
- Deconsolidation Point
Place where loose or other non-containerized cargo is ungrouped for delivery.
- Deficit Weight
The weight by which a shipment is less than the minimum weight.
- Delivery Instructions
Order to pick up goods at a named place and deliver them to a pier. Usually issued by exporter to trucker but may apply to a railroad, which completes delivery by land. Use is limited to a few major U.S. ports. Also known as shipping delivery order.
Demurrage/Despatch money. (Under vessel chartering terms, the amount to be paid if the ship is loading/discharging slower/faster than foreseen.)
A penalty charge against shippers or consignees for delaying the carrier's equipment beyond the allowed free time. The free time and demurrage charges are set forth in the charter party or freight tariff.
The weight of cargo per cubic foot or other unit.
- Depot, Container
Container freight station or a designated area where empty containers can be picked up or dropped off.
An incentive payment paid to a carrier to loading and unloading the cargo faster than agreed. Usually negotiated only in charter parties.
the place where carrier actually turns over cargo to consignee or his agent.
- Destination Control Statements
Various statements that the U.S. government requires to be displayed on export shipments. The statements specify the authorized destinations.
A penalty charge against shippers or consignees for delaying carrier's equipment beyond allowed time. Demurrage applies to cargo; detention applies to equipment. See Per Diem.
The unloading of a container or cargo van.
- DF Car
Damage_Free Car. Boxcars equipped with special bracing material.
An amount added or deducted from base rate to make a rate to or from some other point or via another route.
- Discrepancy Letter of Credit
When documents presented do not conform to the requirements of the letter of credit (L/C), it is referred to as a "discrepancy." Banks will not process L/C's which have discrepancies. They will refer the situation back to the buyer and/or seller and await further instructions.
The weight, in tons of 2,240 pounds, of the vessel and its contents. Calculated by dividing the volume of water displaced in cubic feet by 35, the average density of sea water.
A change made either in the route of a shipment in transit (see Reconsignment) or of the entire ship.
Carriers' practice of dividing revenue received from through rates where joint hauls are involved. This is usually according to agreed formulae.
for land transportation, A loading or unloading platform at an industrial location or carrier terminal.
- Dock Receipt
A form used to acknowledge receipt of cargo and often serves as basis for preparation of the ocean bill of lading.
Present a rate proposal to a conference meeting for adoption as a conference group rate.
- Documents Against Acceptance (D/A)
Instructions given by a shipper to a bank indicating that documents transferring title to goods should be delivered to the buyer only upon the buyer's acceptance of the attached draft.
- Documents Against Payment (D/P)
An indication on a draft that the documents attached are to be released to the drawee only on payment.
A set of wheels that support the front of a container; used when the automotive unit is disconnected.
Through transportation of a container and its contents from consignor to consignee. Also known as House to House. Not necessarily a through rate.
an unconditional order in writing, addressed by one party (drawer) to Another party (drawee), requiring the drawee to pay at A fixed or determinable future date A specified sum in lawful currency to the order of A specified person.
- Draft, Bank
An order issued by a seller against a purchaser; directs payment, usually through an intermediary bank. Typical bank drafts are negotiable instruments and are similar in many ways to checks on checking accounts in a bank.
- Draft, Clean
A draft to which no documents are attached.
- Draft, Date
A draft that matures on a fixed date, regardless of the time of acceptance.
- Draft, Discounted
A time draft under a letter of credit that has been accepted and purchased by a bank at a discount.
- Draft, Sight
A draft payable on demand upon presentation.
- Draft, Time
A draft that matures at a fixed or determinable time after presentation or acceptance.
A partial refund of an import fee. Refund usually results because goods are re-exported from the country that collected the fee.
The individual or firm that issues a draft and thus stands to receive payment.
Charge made for local hauling by dray or truck. Same as Cartage.
Abbreviation for "Destination Rail Freight Station." Same as CFS at destination, except a DRFS is operated by the rail carrier participating in the shipment.
- Dry Cargo
Cargo that is not liquid and normally does not require temperature control.
- Dry-Bulk Container
A container constructed to carry grain, powder and other free-flowing solids in bulk. Used in conjunction with a tilt chassis or platform.
Delay in Startup Insurance is a policy to protect the seller of a construction project from penalties if the project is not completed on time. See "Liquidated Damages."
Attempting to import merchandise into a country at a price less than the fair market value, usually through subsidy by exporting country.