An air waybill, or an AWB, is a receipt from your air carrier when shipping by air. It is a contract between the business or individual who is shipping and the carrier organisation. Air waybills are designed especially for air cargo and are one of the most important documents for all the parties involved – from the shipper, to the carrier, to the consignee.
The air waybill acts as a contract of carriage and also confirms the receipt of goods from one airport to another. The air waybill serves the following four crucial purposes:
Waybills go alongside a bill of lading, which details the kind, amount, destination and, most importantly, the owner of the goods. Waybills do not show ownership. In modern shipping and air transport, it is more commonly an electronic document – this means that waybill numbers or package information can be scanned automatically. There are also sea waybills for sea freight.
We are leading providers of many fast, reliable and cost-effective international shipping services. As a result, we can answer a few common questions about air waybills, how they work and why they are important documents. You can get in touch with us to use our amazing service today.
You can track your air waybill number through your air carrier, of which there are many global and regional providers. When you check digits that appear on your air waybill number with your carrier, or third-party sites, you will be able to track your shipment and see other information on the progress of your delivery, too. Tracking from some providers can be unreliable at times.
Not all carriers have the same level of real-time tracking, data or support available, so third party sites may be a good alternative. You could also use a reliable shipping or delivery partner, who can provide bespoke online tracking abilities and other client support for tracking your goods.
Your air waybill is an 11 digit number, normally located on your carrier’s shipping label, but you may also find it in any of their email communications or directly from your online account.
The air waybill uses 3 digits to identify the airline carrying the shipment, and the remaining 8 digits are serial numbers to identify the package. Many times the air waybill will have a hyphen after the first 3 digits, so they might look something like this on the label: 111-12345678.
If you are struggling to find an air waybill number, you may benefit from a shipping service that is specialised in organising air freight. Good quality services of this kind will have excellent client support, just in case you have questions about airway bill numbers, or any other concerns.
Yes. An air waybill is essentially the same as a tracking number. Air waybills are usually for large shipments of air freight with an air carrier, so you may have a different type of tracking number and not an air waybill for smaller shipments or shipments that are not travelling abroad by air.
Your air waybill is a type of tracking number, with a 3 digit airline identifier and an 8 digit shipment serial number – giving all parties all of the information for the air freight in transit.
Yes. Air waybills are important for customs, insurance, billing and proof of contract between the shipping parties. An air waybill is one of the most important documents for international air freight, with the waybill number from the package you can easily see the following information:
Air waybills are designed and overseen by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). This provides considerable security and guarantees for shipping merchants as it is an internationally recognised non-negotiable contract, which is crucial when shipping between countries.
We can help with all manner of international shipping for small and medium-sized businesses, using our impressive infrastructure, tracking capabilities and extensive client support. You can enhance your business and gain the advantage of top-class air freight by using our services.
You will see our team are friendly, professional and helpful when you get in touch to learn more about our international shipping services, which can alleviate any concerns you have about air waybills or shipping using air freight carriers.