Now what exactly was …? The world of logistics is full of technical terms, and new terms are constantly being added. Our glossary explains them all in a nutshell. If a term you are looking for is not listed here, please don't hesitate to contact us. We'll be happy to add your technical term to our list.

Entries beginning with «f»

Forwarding Agent's Certificate of Receipt

An FCR is a blocking document required for letters of credit. It is similar to the railway consignment note. By means of the FCR, the forwarding agent certifies receipt of the consignment for irrevocable shipment to the designated recipient. The shipment can then only be revoked if the original document is returned. The FCR's wording requires authorization by FIATA, an international association of forwarding agents, and must comply with Incoterm regulations regarding prepayment instructions.

First in / first out

In logistics, FIFO refers to an organizational method for warehouses in which goods that are stored first (first in) are the first to be retrieved or consumed (first out). The aim of the method is to prevent stocks, especially perishables, from getting out of date.


1. An estimation or calculation in advance; a prediction. 2. The amount of cargo expected to be booked for a specific flight or vessel. 3. The number of containers expected to be used in a certain area.

Fourth Party Logistics Provider (4PL Provider)

A 4PL provider supplies services for the coordination and management of supply chains. Such provider generally do not own or operate their won resources and facilities, but instead act exclusively as agents. A 4PL provider acting as a lead logistics provider (LLP) may also integrate and coordinate the services of other service providers.


In logistics, franking relates to payment clauses in a transport agreement between a freight forwarder and a customer which regulate who covers the transport costs. The transport costs of a shipment sent "prepaid" or "free of all charges" are covered by the sender. When a shipment is sent "non-prepaid", it is the recipient who bears the transport costs.


Costs charged by the carrier for transporting goods.

Freight forwarder

A freight forwarder (or forwarder) is a logistics provider who organizes the shipment of goods from one point to another. He may act as a third-party agent and hire a carrier or manage the shipment himself. The latter case is referred to as self-contracting on the part of the freight forwarder. Freight forwarders are generally contracted by the party wishing to ship the freight. The freight forwarder's responsibilities also encompass the selection and monitoring of warehouse keepers and other services he does not provide himself.

Freight transport industry

The freight transport industry consists of enterprises providing logistics services as primary services for the shipping sector. It is made up of three classic service areas focused on the job of moving goods from the point of dispatch to the point of receipt. Firstly, there are services which involve changing the location of the goods for the means of transport. Secondly there are services provided at a fixed location, for example storage, order picking, packaging and transshipment. And finally there are services focused on brokerage, consultation and the organization and sale of freight transport services. Broadly speaking, the transport industry encompasses all companies, customers and markets involved in the production and provision of transport services. This definition includes auxiliary and supplementary operators in the groups involved in the industry, for example warehousers, forwarders and agents, logistics centers, transshipping and packaging firms, and even garages and filling stations. A further loosely associated group relevant to the supply of transport services comprises, for example, vehicle hire companies, courier services and travel agencies.

Full truck load

The term full truck load indicates that a truck is filled to capacity with goods. Because the full capacity of the means of transport is used, FTL transportation is particularly cost-efficient.

› cf. LTL (Less than truck load)

Free trade zone

There are various types of free trade zone. A free trade zone may be an international alliance between a number of countries aimed at eliminating trade barriers, for example tariffs. But there are also many free trade zones within countries, usually located around primary transshipment centers like ports or airports. Here, too, exemptions from customs duty apply and tax breaks are offered in order to attract foreign investors and strengthen local industry. 

› cf. EFTA (European Free Trade Association)