Shipment description: What does it mean and why couriers need it?5 min read

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What is a shipment description and why is it important?

A shipment description, or parcel information, is asked in those rare cases that a courier company is trying to locate your parcel because it became unreadable due to a fallen off label or an unreadable label. We will go through the process and tell you what parcel information you have to give.

The shipment or order details, on the contrary, is a summary of all the information regarding a parcel that a shipper wants to send to a receiver. It contains information about the pick-up and delivery address and contact person. It is of great importance to us and the courier that we are fully aware of the content of the parcel (it’s weight, dimensions, specific content, …) because it helps us to asses which service would be the safest and cheapest for you. Having a thorough parcel content description will avoid problems during transport, for example when a courier has to pick up a parcel that is much heavier and bigger than mentioned.

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What parcel information do I need to give when it got lost?

In extreme events, the courier has to locate your parcel. This could have been caused by various reasons like the label fell off, the foil fell of/got ripped or because the label is scratched because of contact with other boxes.

In rare cases, the notification comes from courier service, saying that they have a parcel with a missing or torn label. But in most cases, it starts with a phone call from our customers saying that the status of their parcel hasn’t changed in 48 hours. We’ll contact the courier, and, in most cases, it was an error in their system.

In the few instances, things have not been cleared out, we will ask the customer to provide some parcel information:

  1. Description of the parcel: method of packaging, dimensions, weight, color, does it have any logos, brands, or special tape that may help to identify the parcel quicker?
  2. Content: we understand that this is not the most convenient for you, but remember that the more information you give, the more accurate the search can be. Courier companies have hundreds or even thousands of parcels and suitcases in their depot so even a description of a single item in the parcel can help.
  3. Value of the content.

When found, pictures are taken and sent to Eurosender. Sequentially, we sent them to the client who will, hopefully, confirm that the parcel or suitcase is located.

What do you put in the shipment/order details?

The best way to avoid situations like this is to fill out the shipment or order details correctly when booking a shipment with Eurosender. There are 3 parts to the order details:

Shipment details
Here you have to write down how many parcels you will ship, how much each of them weighs and if the length (longest side) is less or more than 1 meter (of the to ship parcel). For standard shipping services we have weight and dimension restrictions, these are pre-agreed with our couriers and serve to help the shipping process.

Addresses
Fill out the form completely! A zip code by itself is not enough. Add a telephone number, the name of the person who will hand over the parcel and the number of the receiving party. This is also the section where you have will have to add your apartment number, floor number, door number, access codes, etc. You will have to be creative since the comment section is not available for the courier to see.

Comment section
This section is not supposed to contain any important information! Any information such as access codes or apartment numbers are to be stated in the address section. Contact us if you have any questions or if you have something important to add.

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A few last tips we would like to give you:

  1. Write down the addresses with a sharpie on the parcel itself. In case the label would fall off, there is still a way to retrieve your details in the system.
  2. Also when you send a suitcase abroad, add a tag or a sticker stating your name, number and/or address.
  3. Make sure your suitcase is wrapped for safety, ease of handling. and the label will far less likely fall of.

Is a shipment description the same as a shipping label?

The most important information in the shipment description will find its way to the shipping label. In short, a shipping label is a piece of information for the courier, which not only serves as an address sticker but also an easy way to scan the parcel so it can be tracked online.

Most courier companies, including the ones Eurosender works with, will label a parcel for you. We will notify you whether you will have to print out a label or not. All you need to do is fill out the parcel content description while making the order online. This you’ll have to do at the very first page when entering the order details. Make sure you clearly state your full address, postal code, and telephone number.

Feel free to contact us if you have any other questions regarding filling out the shipment description or parcel information, or if you have questions in general.

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Last modified: June 10, 2019

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