Even though the borders of countries become clear again during the COVID-19 pandemic, the international borders lose their importance as we have witnessed in the European Union and in the ASEAN Area. The volume of the global trade is increasing rapidly as borders lose their meaning gradually. According to Statista's data, the world trade volume grew with a very high acceleration between 1950-2019. During commercial activities, the bill of lading is essential for a healthy conclusion of commercial transactions. Bill of lading documents are very important for companies operating in business, and TradeAtlas is a database that contains 1,458,932,245 bill of lading and shipments data.

        What is Bill of Lading?

It is a valuable document containing all the information related to the relevant commercial transaction, especially the information such as the loader, the buyer, the notification authority, in the bill of lading or otherwise known as the bill of carriage. In other words, the bill of lading document is actually a loading instruction. The word bill of lading, which comes to our language from the Italian conoscimento word, means "recognition, confirmation, confirmation in maritime trade". Although documents similar to the bill of lading date back to the ancient Roman years, in 1063, with the Ordinamenta et consuetudo maris law, ship owners in all city states in Italy were obliged to record the quality and amount of cargo loaded on their ships. There are three main types of bill of lading: road bill of lading, maritime bill of lading and air waybill. The following information is included on the bill of lading:

·        Shipping company name

·        Weight and monetary value of the goods carried.

·        Name and address of the exporter

·        Name and address of the importer

·        Loading date of the goods

·        Terms of payment

·        Loading and destination port information

·        Freight payment information

·        Signature and document issuance date

·        Number, dimensions, full name, feature, delivery type, weight of the goods, etc.

                How to Query the Bill of Lading?

In order to inquire about the bill of lading, it is necessary to have a copy of the bill of lading or to know the bill of lading number. After obtaining the bill of lading document, you should enter the website of the carrier firm and access information about the bill of lading and the status of the cargo.

                How to fill in the Bill of Lading?

The bill of lading, which is the biggest guarantee for the delivery of goods sent abroad, must be filled with complete and accurate information because a correctly filled bill of lading is one of the first requirements of the correct and safe shipment of the overseas shipment. The bill of lading document is filled in three copies. These three copies are then given to the shipper first, the second copy accompanies the goods, and the third copy remains with the carrier. Thus, it can be checked by all parties whether the goods are transported in the agreed conditions, whether they are received in good condition and whether the contract of carriage has been made.

       Sample Bill of Lading Document