What is an AWB?
An air waybill (AWB) refers to a document that usually accompanies goods that are being shipped by a domestic or international courier and provides detailed information on the shipment and allows it to be tracked. An AWB may come in multiple copies so that each party involved in the delivery process can document it.
The air waybill also contains the shipper's name and address, consignee's name and address, three-letter origin airport code, three-letter destination airport code, declared shipment value for customs, number of pieces, gross weight, a description of the goods, and any special instructions (e.g., "perishable").
Why is an AWB important?
An AWB is important as it fulfills the following important functions:
- The AWB will act as a form of legal contract between the sender and the courier booked.
- The AWB functions as a form of evidence of the courier's acknowledgement of receiving the parcel for transport.
- The AWB becomes a record containing the contact information for all the parties involved in the delivery process.
- The AWB will act as a guide to the courier in charge on how to handle and deliver the goods.
- In cases where it is needed or appropriate, the AWB will also be accepted as a customs declaration document along with other supporting documents.