How to create compliant packing list documents

23 May 2019

Although it is not required in most countries around the world, the packing list – a document containing all the necessary information about the shipment, must be prepared when importing goods from outside the EU.

Once the container is loaded, a set of documents is prepared so that the goods can clear customs without any problems. Additionally, it is necessary to enclose a commercial invoice, waybill, proof of payment as well as other certificates and approvals required depending on the type of goods.

The packing list document should include:

  1. Number and date of issue of the document.
  2. Reference to the commercial invoice and waybill.
  3. Details of the sender and recipient.
  4. List of all goods loaded into the container and the number of packages.
  5. Type of packaging used.
  6. Unit and total weight of the goods, net and gross.
  7. Load dimensions.
  8. Delivery terms – origin and import country, details of ports of loading and unloading as well as ship and cruise details.

It is very important that the details contained in the packing list are compliant with those on the invoice and other documents. Otherwise, the packing list’s credibility could be questioned. 

The Packing List can be prepared by yourself or with the help of software. On the Internet, you can find ready-to-use, free templates to fill in. For those who transport goods and often need to create packing lists, dedicated software may prove useful. The most popular ones include Shipping Solutions, where you can quickly prepare a whole set of export documents, or EasyBilling – a comprehensive sales document management application.