The UPS (United Parcel Service) Commercial Invoice is a document used for shipping products across international borders originating from the United States. It contains identifying information on what is being shipped, the item(s) value, and any other information pertinent to the goods. The form contains sufficient information to provide customs agencies with an accurate picture of what is being shipped, so long the shipper completes the forms to their fullest extent.
Table of Contents
Once the form has been downloaded, the entity shipping the goods will need to have a full understanding of the contents of what is being shipped. This includes knowing the following information regarding the item(s):
- A detailed description of each good type
- Quantity of each item + the units of measure (“bundle,” “sleeve,” “roll,” etc.)
- The value of the product or goods being shipped
- Currency in which the products have been priced
- The total weight of the package(s)
- Harmonized tariff schedule code (for finding an item’s code, head to the HTS Search)
For a complete breakdown of how to complete the commercial invoice as well as information on what each field is requesting, checkout UPS’ Commercial Invoice Guide.
Shipping with UPS is straight-forward so long the shipping entity takes their time and ensures all steps in the process are followed carefully. The following is a brief outline of the steps involved when shipping internationally with UPS:
- Identify if there are any special restrictions or requirements of the destination country. UPS provides a handy search tool that allows the user to search one to several regulation topics.
- Go to UPS’ “Create A Shipment” page and complete all required fields.
- Complete all required customs documents, including the Commercial Invoice (unless using UPS’ Paperless Invoice).
- Pay the required shipping fees. If the cost of shipping will be paid for by a different person or company (or split among multiple entities), UPS’ TradeAbility International Tools can allow users to estimate costs, as well as locate harmonized codes, identify licenses required by the destination country, and ensure the shipper is compliant with all regulations.