Terms & Glossaries of Shipping and Trading

Advice of Shipment

A notice sent to a local or foreign buyer advising that shipment has gone forward and containing details of packing, routing, etc. A copy of the invoice is often enclosed and, if desired, a copy of the bill of lading.

Unveiling Advice of Shipment: A Critical Notification in Freight Logistics

In the multifaceted world of freight transport and logistics, numerous documents facilitate the smooth movement of goods and transactions between parties involved in the supply chain. Among these documents is the "Advice of Shipment," a critical communication tool that provides essential information about a shipment to various stakeholders. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the Advice of Shipment, including its definition, purpose, and key components within the realm of freight transport.

What is the Advice of Shipment?

The Advice of Shipment, also known as the "Shipment Advice" or "Shipping Advice," is a document issued by a seller or shipper to notify the buyer or consignee about the details of an impending shipment. It serves as a formal communication tool that provides essential information about the shipment, including its contents, quantity, destination, and expected delivery date.

Purpose of Advice of Shipment

The primary purposes of the Advice of Shipment include:

1. Notification: The Advice of Shipment serves as a formal notification to the buyer or consignee that their order has been processed, and the goods are ready for shipment. It provides timely information about the status of the shipment and allows the recipient to make necessary arrangements to receive the goods.

2. Documentation: The Advice of Shipment serves as supporting documentation for the shipment, providing evidence that the goods have been dispatched and are in transit to the intended destination. It may accompany other shipping documents, such as the bill of lading, invoice, packing list, and certificate of origin.

3. Information Sharing: The Advice of Shipment facilitates communication and information sharing between the seller, buyer, carriers, and other parties involved in the transportation process. It ensures transparency and clarity regarding the shipment's details, including its contents, routing, and delivery instructions.

Key Components of Advice of Shipment

The Advice of Shipment typically contains the following key components:

1. Sender and Recipient Information: The names, addresses, and contact details of the sender (seller or shipper) and the recipient (buyer or consignee) of the shipment.

2. Shipment Details: Information about the shipment, including the description of goods, quantity, weight, dimensions, value, and any special handling instructions or requirements.

3. Transportation Details: Details of the transportation method, carrier, mode of transport (e.g., air, sea, road, rail), expected departure and arrival dates, and any tracking or reference numbers associated with the shipment.

4. Delivery Instructions: Instructions for the delivery of the goods, including the designated delivery address, contact person, preferred delivery date and time, and any specific delivery preferences or restrictions.

5. Acknowledgment: Space for the recipient to acknowledge receipt of the Advice of Shipment and confirm their understanding of the shipment details and delivery instructions.

The Significance of the Advice of Shipment

The strategic importance of Shipping Advice within the domain of logistics and supply chain management is multifaceted:

Operational Preparedness: It allows consignees to make necessary preparations, including payments, storage, and labor arrangements, to ensure the smooth reception of goods.

Customs and Compliance: It provides the consignee with the required details to start preparing any documents necessary for customs clearance, helping to minimize potential delays.

Financial Planning: With the details of arriving shipments, the consignee can better manage inventory levels and financial planning, ensuring funds are available for payment of goods, duties, taxes, and other charges.

Mastering Schedules: It enables both shippers and consignees to optimize their operational schedules and plan for subsequent supply chain actions.


In conclusion, the Advice of Shipment serves as a vital communication tool in freight transport, providing essential information about a shipment to various stakeholders in the supply chain. By notifying the buyer or consignee about the status of their order, documenting the details of the shipment, and facilitating information sharing between parties, the Advice of Shipment plays a crucial role in ensuring transparency, efficiency, and reliability in the transportation process. Shippers, buyers, carriers, and other stakeholders must understand the purpose and key components of the Advice of Shipment to facilitate seamless communication and coordination in freight transport operations.