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All shipments going outside of the UK must be accompanied by a Commercial Invoice. SAE Logistics will not ship your goods until this information, in full, has been received.

Mandatory Commercial Invoice requirements –

  • Commercial Invoice Number
  • Shippers address + EORI number + VAT number + Contact Name + Phone + email address
  • Consignee address + EORI number+ VAT number + Contact Name + Phone + email address
  • Delivery address (if different from consignee)
  • Shipment terms – DAP, DDP, Temporary Export (see below explanations)
  • Goods description for each invoice line
  • Number of pieces for each invoice line and totalled
  • Commodity/HS Codes for each invoice line
  • 8 digits are required for an export declaration
  • 10 are required for the import
  • Invoice currency & Invoice totalled
  • Country of origin for each invoice line
  • Reason for export (see below explanations)
  • Sign, print and date


DAP – Deliver at Place.

This term was previously known as DDU (Delivered Duty Unpaid). Taxes must be paid by the consignee before goods will be released to them.

This means that on arrival at the importing Country border – this currently includes Northern Ireland – the consignee must pay any taxes applied by the importing country BEFORE the goods will be released to them.

On arrival, the consignee will be contacted and asked to pay any taxes due plus any charges relating to customs clearance documentation required by the local Customs.

Your consignee may have to appoint a Clearance Agent or Clearance Broker to assist with this. This will be their decision to make. Any delays in appointing an agent could result in excess storage charges being applied by the local Customs whilst waiting for taxes to be paid and paperwork provided.

Consignee – Your customer, purchaser, importer

Import Tariffs – Our exit agreement 31 December 2020 meant that no import tariffs should apply to most goods leaving or entering the UK.

Import Taxes – a tax applied by the importing Country similar to UK VAT.

DDP – Delivered to Door, Duty and Taxes paid. The import clearance agent would have agreements with the local Customs to allow the goods to enter the Country and any duty / taxes be deducted from an account of money previously lodged with Customs e.g monies held on account.

After the goods have been delivered, the agent will seek payment from their customer e.g SAE Logistics, to the value of duty / taxes plus any administration fees that they have paid on your / our behalf, these are often referred to as deferment charges. Immediate payment is demanded.

***Currently, DDP services will only be available as a special request.

There is no guarantee that we or our Overseas agents will be able to achieve this, however, it will be vitally important that you contact SAE providing as much notice as possible of these types of shipments.

Carriers will no longer accept freight that contains a mixture of DAP & DDP consignments on the same vehicle. A DDP shipment can hold up the processing of all standard DAP traffic as payments for duties / taxes MUST be made at the time of clearance – see terminology above. This process requires much greater administration and of course local Countries Customs draw down the value of duties / taxes immediately.

In essence this means that the clearance agent is “bank rolling” their customers who require DDP services. Given that taxes apply now to all shipments into the EU it would mean that carriers could be faced with hundreds of thousands of £’s awaiting payment from their customers – they are not prepared to take this level of risk ***

Temporary Export – some goods can be classified under a heading Temporary Export. This means that what goes out MUST come back into the UK (in its entirety) within 6 months of leaving the UK.

This is particularly helpful when supplying goods under a loan or hire transaction, but, everything must re-enter the UK.

Reason for Export –
The below are examples only:

  • For goods that are sold (a commercial transaction), wording is not usually required as the Commercial Invoice speaks for itself, however you can enter something such as “Commercial Sale”
  • For goods that are supplied FOC (no commercial transaction) wording such as “Warranty Exchange, No Commercial Value” or “Commercial Sample” can be used


We are working on plans to be able to provide DDP services but these are likely to have to be on a dedicated, direct drive basis and will require payments of estimated tax charges to be lodged with us in advance of despatch.

We are currently negotiating with all our carriers as to the charges that they are demanding for processing export documentation and any administration they are providing.
All carriers are applying fees of some sort for every shipment to the EU / ROW. These are being titled as –
Brexit Surcharge
Processing Charge
Admin Fees

As I am sure you are aware, our break from the EU is still a very fluid situation with much conflicting information circulating and many carriers and agents applying charges at differing rates.

These charges are outside of our control and will have to be on-costed to your account. As said, we will notify you as to the scale of charges once all carriers have agreed and we have been advised.

Should you require any further information please contact our Operations Team on 01895 825258.