Bill Of Lading (BOL or B/L) is a document issued by a carrier (shipping line), or its agent, to the shipper as an acknowledgment of receipt of the cargo or the shipment.
The B/L serves multiple functions:
- It is a document of title
- A contract of carriage of goods
- An acknowledgement from the carrier that it has received and accepted the goods for transportation.
The B/L has to be presented by the consignee to obtain delivery of the cargo at the port of destination.
The B/L contains the following information:
- Name and address of Shipper
- Name and address of Consignee
- Name and address of Notify party
- Name of Port of Loading
- Name of Port of Destination
- Name and details of designated vessel
- Type of movement (port to port, door to port, door to door)
- Type of container load (FCL/LCL)
- Date of Vessel departure from Port of Loading
- Itemized list of goods, including number of packages, type of packaging, weight/volume, marks and numbers on the packages, and nature of cargo
- Freight rate and amount (if requested)