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A Cheat Sheet of Common Exporting Acronyms

On: February 1, 2023    |    By: David Noah David Noah    |    9 min. read

A Cheat Sheet of Common Exporting Acronyms | Shipping SolutionsHave you ever had to file your EEI with AES and forgotten your ECCN? Or attempted to complete your export paperwork and realized BIS classified your item as EAR99 and you can ship under NLR? Or does this sound like Greek to you?

Exporters have a language all our own—from common terms we see and use everyday to acronyms we may have to look up to remind ourselves of. Chances are you use many of these acronyms everyday, but there may be some you forget from time to time. (I know I do!)

That’s why I thought it would be helpful to compile several dozen of the most common exporting acronyms (sorted alphabetically) into a cheat sheet that translates these terms for me. How many are you familiar with?

  1. EXW (Ex Works)
  2. FCA (Free Carrier)
  3. CPT (Carriage Paid To)
  4. CIP (Carriage and Insurance Paid To)
  5. DAP (Delivered at Place)
  6. DPU (Delivered at Place Unloaded)
  7. DDP (Delivered Duty Paid)
  8. FAS (Free Alongside Ship)
  9. FOB (Free on Board)
  10. CFR (Cost and Freight)
  11. CIF (Cost, Insurance, and Freight)

Bookmark this list and use it when you just can’t recall the difference between FTA, FTR and FTZ.

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This article was first published in March 2016 and has been updated to include current information, links and formatting.

David Noah

About the Author: David Noah

David Noah is the founder and president of Shipping Solutions, the #1 selling export documentation software that develops and sells export documentation and compliance software targeted at U.S. companies that export. David is a frequent speaker on export documentation and compliance issues and has published several articles on the topic.

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