Logistics Know How

An easy guide to Shipping Instructions

Shipping Instructions are instructions which are used as the base of the information that will be added to the Bill of Lading. Here, we show you the key information about Shipping Instructions to make your freight documentation easier and faster.

Anna-Sophia Metzel, 03 January 2022

Proper documentation is essential when it comes to shipping your freight worldwide. That’s why we have compiled the most relevant information you need to know about shipping instructions.

What are Shipping Instructions (SI) and how are they connected to the Bill of Lading?

Shipping Instructions, or SI, are instructions that are used as the base of the information that will be added to the Bill of Lading, like a container number, seal number, exact number of packages, HS code of the commodity, etc.

Shipping instructions are provided by the exporter (or agent) to the carrier. The instructions in the document are used to create your Bill of Lading or Sea Waybill, which is the main legal transportation document used in shipping.

 

Shipping Instructions Checklist

For Shipping Instructions, you need to submit the following details:

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There might be a challenge if any of this information is excluded or incorrect on your shipping instruction. In more severe cases, the shipper can be subject to fines by local authorities or the cargo prevented from discharging at the destination. In some countries, local requirements also make the SI mandatory before cargo loading.

Presentation of correct data from the beginning does not eliminate the possibility of encountering issues during or after the shipment. However, it will help reduce and correct issues with your SI as a valid backup to support your case.

4 things to keep in mind when submitting your Shipping Instructions

Here are some further tips and tricks which will make submitting your Shipping Instructions even smoother:

  1. Your cargo description should always match what is being transported and shipped. We are obligated to report any illegal or banned description to the appropriate authorities when this comes to our notice.

  2. You must select the correct HS Code which appropriately describes the cargo you are shipping. Selecting an incorrect HS code can lead to complications with authorities at the destination.

  3. Double-check that all the details indicated on the Shipping Instructions are correct.

  4. The commodity in your cargo description should be the same as the commodity indicated at the time of booking. Discrepancies could mean a recalculation of your freight, and this would cause further documentation delays.

How do I submit my Shipping Instructions?

Submitting your shipping instructions isn’t that complicated. If you are booking freight with Twill, you will be required to submit your shipping instructions once the booking is confirmed. We will create the transportation document and use it throughout the shipment journey.

The shipping instructions can be submitted online, and our platform will guide you on which information we would need as both mandatory and optional.

Now, you are ready to get your shipment ready – sign up to our platform and get started. For more information like this, head over to our knowledge hub. For further information about Shipping Instructions, head over to our dedicated section in our FAQ.

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