Preparing your Export Shipment by Air

When preparing your export shipment, for instance, in the event you are sending out samples to potential international customers/buyers, you should be aware of a few things. One such element would be the shipment weight and the documentation required. In this blog, we look at these important items on your to do list when preparing your export shipment.

Preparing Your Export Shipment: Weight

it should be noted that by regulations of the IATA, in the event that the volumetric weight is greater than the actual weight of the export shipment, then the cost of the export shipment is calculated based on the space that the consignment will take up in the aircraft carrier. The way you calculate your volumetric weight is simply by multiplying the length by the height and then the width of the shipment in centimeters, and thereafter dividing it by 5,000.

Preparing your Export Shipment: Required Documentation

One thing that is needed in any type of shipment would be the required shipping documentation. In an instance of preparing your export shipment by air, there are two types of documentation required; the waybill and the invoice.


When preparing your export shipment by air, you are required to have a fully completed waybill and thereafter a label fixed to the consignment. This will ensure the successful movement of the export shipment and be able to track its progress effectively. If you have more than one item in your consignment, each item will be numbered accordingly.


Your shipment will also require customs documentation such as a commercial or a pro-forma invoice. This is compulsory when you send an export shipment that contains items other than documents to other countries. This is essentially a declaration of the export shipment’s contents which will help authorities assess the duties and/or taxes that should be levied against it. A commercial invoice is needed for any export shipments that are intended for commercial transactions/resale, whereas a proforma invoice is used when export shipments with goods of no commercial value are sent (such as in the case of samples).

Stay tuned for next week’s blog, Breaking Down a Commercial Invoice.