Airway Bill

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What is Airway Bill?

An airway bill is an internationally accepted document provided by an international or domestic airline that highlights detailed information about a package while allowing it to be tracked. AWB is a commonly used abbreviation for an airway bill. It comprises a unique 11-digit number accompanied by eight copies printed in different colors. 

Significance of Airway Bill in an E-commerce Shipping and Delivery

Airway bills play a huge role in tracking goods in an airline, while it also serves as a deed between shipping and a carrier company. 

  • Evidence and insurance: The airway bill is viewed as a contract between a seller and an air courier. General clauses in the mentioned document hold an air courier accountable for any damage done to the product. Therefore, an airway bill also acts as insurance in case the worst happens. 
  • Conclusive document: An airway bill is required to conclude an active contract of carriage.
  • Handling guide: Every airway bill comes with a handling and disbursal guide. It adds an extra layer of security for sensitive products.  

Prerequisites of Airway Bill and How It Works

A seller must have a requirement to send bulk products quickly. Subsequently, a seller must create one airway bill and hand it over to the airline company in the following ways. 

  • Airway bill allocation: A seller can download the format from their partner airline company and fill in the necessary details. In some cases, airline carriers are responsible for this heavy lifting. 
  • Disbursal: Once the airway bill is allocated, the freight is loaded and handed to the airline courier. 

Use Case With Airway Bill

For example, a Filipino manufacturer sends 10,000 units of jeans and another 10,000 units of t-shirts to a retailer in Australia. Therefore, the manufacturer downloads an airway bill format from an airline carrier, represented by 123. The manufacturer adds all necessary information, and the airline adds a tracking number to create an airway bill, numbered 123-098765432.

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