Air Cargo Handling Process: Beginners Guide

If you are planning on launching an air freight shipment then it is recommended to have complete knowledge of the air cargo handling process. Most importantly you need to focus on getting the shipment delivered on time to the customer.

This process includes proper and careful planning on handling air cargo handling process. The air cargo handling process is done in systematic order including collection and handling of air cargo documents and documentation.

Everyone is not aware of this process so it is recommendable to take advice from Air Cargo shipping Services. We have provided a complete guide in the air cargo handling process to make you understand it better.

Complete Guide to Air Cargo Handling Process

Air Cargo Handling Process: Beginners Guide

Various steps need to be followed properly to ensure the safety and security of the packaging during the shipment.

Proper Documentation

The first thing which needs to be kept in mind is the proper handling of air cargo documents. Due to the lack of proper documentation, the shipment will not be able to be moved from the airport warehouse. All the export documents are needed to be to complete the shipment process. The important documents required for the air cargo handling process include Certificate of Origin, Invoices, packaging lists, etc.

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Commercial Invoice or Pro-Forma along with Other Required Documents

Commercial Invoice and Pro-Forma is most important to ship out products easily. Although most of the countries will not consider Pro-Forma or commercial invoices as legitimate documents for shipment. The signed confirmation in writing from the consignee is required in blue ink in such cases.

So, it is recommended to get proper documentation to avoid any delays and issues while handling shipments. In most cases, all the original documents are required for completing the shipment process.

Proper Packaging of the Shipment

It is recommended to use treated wood for properly packing the shipments. You will get to the IPPC logo in all the exclusive treated wooden boxes. Packaging is the main concern for handling shipments.

Securing Packages

Make sure all the openings’ slits are properly closed before loading the shipment. Strong brands need to use for securing the cartons on the pallet. The strips or bands used for securing the shipments should not cause damage to the packaging.

The details of the consignee should be attached to both sides of the packaging for quick identification. The “SIDE UP” label should be used properly to avoid any damages improper handling of packages. If you are handling fragile products, “DO NOT THROW” needs to be mentioned to avoid content damages.

Shipment Pick Up

The staff picking up the shipment should sign the shipments with proper details including the registration number of the vehicle, name in block letters along with exact time and date.

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Staff needs to examine all the visible damages on the consignment before confirming the pickup. All the documents are to be handed over to the driver to complete the process. Air Cargo Documents should be handled in a waterproof package to avoid damages to the documents.

Exporting from Warehouse

The staff in the warehouse needs to check the condition of the packaging, dangerous goods requirements, gross weight of the packages, and outer dimension.

Screening Process

All the shipments from a known consignee should be labelled “SECURED” to give priority to the shipment. Few of the cases shipments need to be opened and even checked with x-rays to avoid shipping harmful materials.

Shipping Dangerous Goods

If any dangerous goods are to be shipped then proper documentation with “DGD – Dangerous Goods Declaration” should be submitted before the shipment.

Tolerance Level in Floor Board

Floorboard tolerance is applied to the square meter of the space in the aircraft. This needs to be properly calculated before shipment continues.

Dimension and Weight of the Packages

Every shipment needs to follow SLI before packaging. SLI refers to the Shipper’s Letter of Instructions are the guidelines that need to be followed properly for every shipment.

Outer dimension should be mentioned in the unit as well as the dimension in the following order Length x Width x Height. The shipment must not be shorter than 70cm in height and not more than 150kg in total gross weight. The proper declaration must be mentioned in documents used for the shipments.


These are the basic strategies and guidelines that need to be followed for while handling Air cargo for shipments. Follow the security measures and process to avoid complications in the Air cargo handling process.

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Air Cargo Handling Process: Beginners Guide
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