skip to Main Content

International Moving Dictionary – A Glossary of Moving Terminology

Do you know your LCL from and FCL? Do you want BAR or FIDI? Inevitably, as part of an international move, there will be some terminology and acronyms that appear in formal documentation from governments and managing bodies. To help you with these, we have created a simple guide to international moving terms and terminology.

International Moving Terminology

Key International Moving Terms

At Gerson Relocation we aim to make things as simple and transparent for you as possible. We do this by keeping our communications simple and provide clear explanations to help you. These are an excerpt from our international moving guide which you can download for free.


Air freight

The method of transporting shipments by air.


Air Waybill. A document provided by the airline as a receipt of goods.


British Association of Removers, the UK key association of moving companies


Bill of Lading. This acts as a receipt.


The company transporting the items, for example airline company or sea container company.


Cash on Delivery. Where payment is required at the time of delivery.

Customs clearance

The process of passing your shipment and personal possessions through the destination country’s customs. Managing the documentation, communication and payment of customs charges.


A charge payable at the port if a shipment cannot be loaded due to delays – normally due to customs procedures.


Also known as home-to-home, a service which covers the entire process. Note that some movers do not quote on this basis.


FIDI Accredited International Mover. The primary quality kite mark for an international moving company.


Full Container Load means that the move is the only one packed into the container with a scheduled shipping date.


FIDI is the primary international association for moving companies.


Foreign Exchange, using a specialist FX service could cost a lot less than an international bank transfer and most likely get you a better exchange rate on the currency. You can take a look at our FX service offer.


Where many small moves are consolidated together and share a container with no set shipping date.


Household Goods. The personal items being moved.


International Association of Movers, a US based association of moving companies for US domestic and international moves.


Insurance Premium Tax, tax applied to an insurance premium.

ISO Container

A standard steel container. Either 20ft or 40ft in size.

Ladder lift

Apparatus used to take items into and out of properties with difficult high-level access, e.g. top floor flats.


Less than Container Load. A part-load shipment despatched on a scheduled service.


A wooden crate used to export personal goods.


Packed By Owner. Where the shipment is packed by the person moving.


Port of Dispatch, where your items will be shipped from.


Port of Entry, where your items will enter your new country.


The person who is moving.


Transfer of Residence. The form used to apply for tax relief when moving personal items from outside the EU to the UK.


Warehouse Handling Charge. An additional charge for items coming in and out of storage.

    Average customer rating:   4.8/5


    Back To Top