Cargo Control Number
June 21, 2022 by Keith Jaco
A cargo control number (CCN) is a bar code assigned by the carrier or freight forwarder, that uniquely identifies the transport document to the CBSA. It functions to organize shipments for the CBSA while also identifying the carrier transporting products. Cargo control numbers are mandatory for each shipment that is crossing the border to Canada by truck. CBSA scans the CCN barcode at the point of entry into Canada.
Cargo Control Number
Do I Need a Cargo Control Number?
The cargo control number is critical because it identifies both the carrier and shipment to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) at the time of reporting and when release documents are present. You will need to get a CCN from a customs broker to ship from the United States into Canada.
Identifying the Cargo Control Number
The CCN numbers design is in bar-code format. For example, the letter-based carrier code and the digit-based shipment number create the CCN. The carrier code comes along with a unique shipment number which the carrier chooses to create a cargo control number.
Stay Up To Date
While there are many abbreviations for documents similar to the CCN, it is hard to keep up. As always, it is best to not confuse them. Here are some examples of related documents and codes that can speed up your customs journey:
Proof Of Report Number (POR) | The Proof of Report Number is the summary reporting ID number. This ID is different for each exporter and will not change for each shipment.
Pre-arrival Review System (PARS) | The Pre Arrival Review System allows customs brokers to submit shipment release information to the CBSA for review and processing before the goods arrive in Canada.
Canadian Export Reporting System (CERS) | An online, self-service site that allows the exporting firm or customs brokers, on behalf of the shipment company, to submit export documents for customs travel.
The code can be between 4 and 21 characters. The most common users of cargo control numbers are highway carriers. While it is in their use of the PARS process, the cargo control numbers are usually a PARS number/code.
CCN and PARS
PARS numbers are what you get for the early registration of your CCN and other documents before meeting the Canadian border. If a shipment’s CCN label the carrier shows at the border must be the same as what entry was your PARS number (your CCN that you pre-register before reaching the border). For example, a CCN (pre-registered PARS code): “1234PARS56789”. If you electronically send in the CCN before your arrival, must also match the PARS “1234PARS56789”. Although it is not a must to use the letters “PARS” in the code. Yet, if a carrier does embed letters into the code presented, they must match the characters in the document.
Submitting Information Through a Customs Broker
While going through customs can be a tricky process, which is why many businesses choose to work with customs brokers. Customs brokers help businesses to complete the required CCN forms, label their freight, and track the load throughout its process. As a result, working with a customs broker can save businesses time and money.
Crossing Canada’s Border
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)is in charge of checking the people and products across Canada’s border. Officers monitor all the freight they bring into the country and thoroughly check all nooks and crannies of what is passing through the country’s border. If you are a carrier, they will check the cargo, paperwork, and CCN barcodes on the freight to ensure nothing illegal enters the country.
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