A Blue Banana?! and more Transport Terminology
blog 29/12/2021

A Blue Banana?! and more Transport Terminology

FTL transport, ATB transport, Cabotage, Bilateral transport… The logistics and transport sector is full of terms, complicated words and jargon: Transport terminology.

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As an exporter, you yourself are often not very familiar with these terms. The transport sector is a proud sector with many ‘own’ words. On the other hand, transporters and drivers remain contact with people outside of this sector, who are not always able to understand these terms. This gives challenges in understanding transport terminology.

Of course, we as Easy Road Transport cannot close this gap completely. We can, however, do our best to start building a bridge! That is why we have made an overview of the most important transport and logistics terms in this blog. How useful is that! 

Axle configuration – The number of axles that a road vehicle has and the places where these axles are located 


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Axle load – The proportion of the weight of the load and of the vehicle that is ultimately transferred to the ground via an axle and the wheels of this axle. 

BCO or Beneficial Cargo Owner – The ultimate owner of the cargo, usually the consignee. 

Broker – An intermediary or company that organises the transportation of goods and is the communicator between the shipper and the ultimate carrier

Bilateral transport – The transport of goods between two different countries by a vehicle registered in one of these countries 

Black box – A box in the trucks that allows the truck to be followed by the transporter at all times 

Blue Banana – The area between Manchester and Italy with the highest density in cities per area. This is where most of the trades happen.  

Block pallet – A pallet measuring 100cm x 120cm 

Bobcat – informal term used to describe a truck without its trailer

Bulk cargo – Goods that are not transported in combined packages, such as in a trailer or on a pallet, but that are loaded separately from each other

Cabotage – Carriage from A to B within the borders of a particular country, where the country is not one’s own 

Carrier – the company that uses trucks to transport your goods to their destination 

Charter – a transport by road carried out on behalf of another carrier 

Collection or combination ride – A ride where the driver stops at several places to load 

Collo (plural: Colli) – one unit of goods 

Consolidation – combining several loads to make one shipment, saving costs

Coupling wagons – Hooking up the trailer to the tractor (truck)

Customs clearance – Completing the necessary customs formalities in order to transport the goods across borders.

Demurrage costs – A fee that has to be paid if shippers or consignees delay carriers past the time that was agreed upon


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Depot – storage place for goods and products 

Drops – The delivery addresses of the goods in a freight queue 

Emission – The emission of harmful gases. There are strict rules about this in many countries  

EORI number – An identification number for all market participants within the EU, with which customs information can be easily tracked and recorded 

Escorted transport – This refers to the escorting of special transport

Euro pallet – A standard 80 cm x 120 cm pallet

Fenex Terms and Conditions – The Dutch terms and conditions which govern the relationship between the forwarder and the principal 

Fleet – The total number of trucks owned by a transport company

Freight forwarder – An intermediary or company that organises the transportation of goods and is the communicator between the shipper and the ultimate carrier

Full-Truck-Load (or FTL transport) – A full truck where a full container is sent from one shipper to one receiver 

Do you need help with all this transport terminology? Contact our Easy Roaders! They can help you with any questions that remain.

Groupage – A shipment that is smaller than a full trailer. When transporting this groupage shipment, the driver will load and unload at several locations.  

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Haulage – moving goods to or from a specific port 

Load factor – The ratio of the proportion of the cargo capacity that is utilised to the proportion that is not utilised

Load gauge – a measure calculating the size of a load based on the width of a truck 


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Loading and unloading dock – a loading and unloading place on a building where a truck can be unloaded 

Load – anything in or on the truck that can be removed without tools and is therefore not a direct part of the vehicle itself  

Less-Than-Truck-Load (or LTL) transport – a load that is not large enough to completely fill the trailer.  

Logistics – The planning, organisation and execution of a flow of goods and the science behind it.  

Mini pallet – A pallet with dimensions 80 cm x 60 cm 

Modality – The mode of transport of the goods, such as road, air or sea freight.  

Nearshoring or Nearsourcing – The placing of a company right next to the place where the product is produced.  

Offshoring – Moving certain business processes overseas, often where wages are lower.   

Overage – the part of a loading that is more than what was communicated in the documentation

Pallet distribution – the shipping and transport of pallets 

Paperless transport – exchanging documents such as the consignment note digitally instead of on paper 

Do you need help with all this transport terminology? Contact our Easy Roaders! They can help you with any questions that remain.

Road transport – All movements of both goods and passengers by road within a given road network

Roll container or roll pallet – a non-stackable goods unit on wheels 

Semi-trailer – A trailer that is designed to be coupled to a tractor in order to be transported

Stuffing – the loading of several small loads in one trailer 

Supply chain – the goods chain, mapping out the entire chain from production to recipient 

Supply Chain diagram – A graphical representation of the entire process of a product, starting from production and ending at the receiver

Tachograph – records how many kilometres have been driven, how fast the journey has been made and when the driver has taken a break  

TMS or Transport Management System – A system that helps planners and transporters in the transport industry to plan their transports 

Tonne-kilometre (Tonkm) – The unit of measure of the total movement of a tonne of cargo over one kilometre 

Track & Trace – The system whereby the cargo can be directly followed via GPS. The black box plays an important role here 

Transport throughput – Goods that pass through Dutch territory on their way from another country to their country of destination, but which are not cleared by Dutch customs 

Uncoupling Wagons- Releasing the trailer from a tractor

Shipper – the party who wants to export his goods and has them transported by a carrier 

Waybill – The recorded agreement on the transport of certain goods. This letter contains the details required for the execution of the transport, including customs clearance

Working Hours Act for Transport – this Working Hours Decree lays down the times at which drivers drive and rest. This decree applies to national and international transport.

Do you need help with all this transport terminology? Contact our Easy Roaders! They can help you with any questions that remain.


Do you want to know the costs of transporting your goods from A to B? The price calculator lets you calculate your transport costs. No more surprises for you! Fill in the price calculator now!