Export Documentation

How to issue Freight Commercial Invoice

As you may already know, when exporting goods it is important to ensure that information on all your documents is consistent and accurate.

The document every exporter should first complete is the called Commercial Invoice (CI). It serves as the basis for all export documents covering the shipment such as waybill or shipping label, and the information provided on these documents must correspond with the Commercial Invoice.

What is the Commercial Invoice?

  • It is a document prepared by the exporter and required by the buyer to prove ownership and arrange for payment.
  • It represents a complete record of the business transaction between the exporter and the buyer with regard to the goods shipped.
  • It is used as one of the main documents in the collection process and customs for control, valuation and duty determination.
  • It must fully identify the shipment. All data contained in the commercial invoice must conform to the particular entry requirements of the destination country – where the goods are being exported.

When is it needed?

A commercial invoice must be used when the goods shipped reflect a commercial transaction (i.e. if there has been a sale between exporter and buyer), and are for permanent export. Goods englobe all product/commodity (non-document) shipments for international trade.

What should it include?

A commercial invoice must contain the following information:

How do I complete it properly?

  • Always include a copy of your Commercial Invoice INSIDE as well as OUTSIDE the package.
  • Always reference the air waybill or tracking number on the Commercial Invoice
  • One original signed copy of the invoice by the shipper is required, as well as a total of five copies.

 If you have further questions regarding the issue or have other questions please contact us at enquiries@unsworth.uk or alternatively, call us on +44 (0) 20 8539 8899, where our dedicated team is at hand happy to help.