UPS international air freight goes digital for customs clearance

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UPS announced it is extending to air freight customers the same capability now enjoyed by small package shippers to clear customs electronically in more than 90 countries. The extension of the UPS Paperless Invoice service to international air freight shipments saves time, money and trees, according to the company, and its free-of-charge solution enables customers to increase efficiency by integrating order processing, shipment preparation and commercial invoice data; it then transmits that data in advance of the shipment to customs offices across the globe, eliminating the problems that accompany paper documentation.

UPS says that because information is stored electronically, customers reduce their chance of making manual errors filling out customs documentation; the tech-enabled service also eliminates the possibility of submitting incomplete paperwork. The new capability to process air freight shipments electronically currently is available through UPS Internet Shipping and UPS CampusShip software; it will be available through UPS WorldShip in January.

In a second international technology enhancement, UPS added 25 new origin countries to its UPS WorldShip shipping software. UPS says the availability of this technology option means customers can generate labels and prepare packages for shipping without resorting to pen and paper. UPS WorldShip software now can be used for small package and air freight shipments in 63 countries.

The newest origins for this service include Argentina, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Chile, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Estonia, Greece, Guam, Iraq, Israel, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania, Nepal, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and United Arab Emirates. WorldShip can be installed in any of 20 languages.

“We are committed to making international shipping as simple as possible for our customers around the world,” says Scott Aubuchon, director of international air freight marketing for UPS. “Our expanded services enable more of our customers to streamline and expedite the customs process while cutting costs and saving time.”

UPS Paperless Invoice and UPS WorldShip are suited for industrial manufacturing and distribution industries, as well as retail, consumer goods, professional services, high-tech companies and other companies that deal with overseas movements on a regular basis. The new enhancements also make it possible for UPS Paperless Invoice customers to submit an electronic NAFTA Certificate of Origin for packages moving between the U.S. and Canada, reducing or eliminating duties for NAFTA eligible goods.