The e-Air Waybill (e-AWB) is the electronic successor of the paper Air Waybill. Effective 1 January 2019, IATA announced that the e-AWB would become the default contract of carriage for all air cargo shipments on enabled trade lanes. The e-AWB is a key step for e-freight to succeed and therefore reach a paperless supply chain process, saving you time and money. So why not go paperless with e-AWB and benefit optimally in your shipping process?

This process can be quickly and easily implemented. We can provide you with all the information you will need to succeed in the transition, including the Activation Form to be submitted to become an e-AWB customer with AFKLMP Cargo.

If you have any questions, please refer to the FAQs, download our detailed brochure or contact our e-freight team: mail.efreight@airfrance.fr.

Click here to register as e-AWB customer!

e-AWB principle

The e-AWB is the dematerialisation of the Master Air Waybill (AWB), which is replaced by an electronic message called the FWB. The House Air Waybill (HAWB) can also be dematerialised using the electronic FHL message.
The e-AWB refers to a transportation contract between a shipper/forwarder and an airline. With the e-AWB there is no longer a need to print, handle or archive a paper AWB. The contract obtains its legal status by an electronic combination of:
  • The FWB message sent by the forwarder to the airline;
  • The FSU/RCS message sent in return by the airline to the forwarder (legal transfer of responsibility of the shipment between the forwarder and the airline).
E-AWB is possible for every destination and product except Charges Collect and Letter of Credit shipments. Please always be sure to provide all other necessary paper documentation such as the Dangerous Goods Declaration, veterinary certificates, etc.

e-AWB data quality

Because the e-AWB replaces the paper AWB as the legal transportation contract, it is vital for the data quality of the e-AWB to be as high as that of its paper predecessor. Good data quality is a prerequisite to take full advantage of the benefits of a paperless cargo journey and contributes to a fast acceptance process on delivery of the shipment. In this section you will find several helpful documents to support you in setting up high-quality data messages.

Consignment Security Declaration
The Consignment Security Declaration (CSD) provides regulators with an audit trail of how, when and by whom cargo was secured along the supply chain. To facilitate an efficient, paperless acceptance process, we encourage our customers to provide the CSD information in their FWB message in accordance with IATA´s FWB standards. The required information includes:
  • a special handling code indicating whether or not the shipment is secured;
  • for secured shipments: an indication of how, by whom, and when the shipment was secured.
Please refer to our CSD guidance document for support on how this information should be transmitted in the FWB.


For more information about the ICS2 requirements, please refer to our ICS2 page.

Improving data quality with MIP 2.0
For each e-AWB, you receive a response message from the airline in the form of an FMA or FNA message, indicating whether your message has been processed correctly (FMA) or whether it contained a syntax or content error (FNA). In the details of the FMA or FNA, you will see the MIP 2.0 codes and an explanation of the error, indicating where it was in the message. You can now also see details of your AWB validation on your MyCargo page.
We distinguish data quality warnings and errors: errors prevent the message from being processed and will thus lead to an FNA; a new message should be sent before delivering the shipment. Warnings do not prevent the message from being processed and the shipment can be delivered. However it could mean that corrections are necessary during the acceptance process, potentially leading to delays. We therefore urge you to look into the warnings you receive frequently to ensure the efficient delivery of your shipment.

How to switch to e-AWB

Step 1: Sign in the IATA Multilateral e-AWB Agreement

The Multilateral e-AWB Agreement provides a legal framework for parties to conclude cargo contracts by electronic means.
Sign it online: https://www.formstack.com/forms/iata-multilateral.
More details and FAQs: https://www.iata.org/en/programs/cargo/e/eawb/multilateral/

Step 2: Be able to Transmit electronic data (FWB/FHL).

There are different ways to send an FWB:
  • Your own IT system: your system may already have the FWB and FHL transmission functionality. To find out if this is the case, you can contact your IT department. If this is not the case, your IT department may eventually develop this feature on your current system.
  • 3rd parties, providing the possibility to send FWB and FHL: you can use an IT Solution Provider with a system that meets your requirements including building and sending FWB and FHL messages. Several tools are available on the market.
  • CPS (Cargo Portal Services): this free web portal will allow you to create your e-AWB/e-HAWB.

Step 3: Send a request for a bilateral e-AWB contract

To become an e-Freight customer you will first be required to fill in an e-AWB Activation Request Form
This form can only be sent after making sure to have fulfilled the conditions of steps 1 and 2 and after having successfully transmitted several FWB/FHL messages.

Step 4: Data quality tests and e-AWB contract

The AFKL e-Freight team will run a number of data quality checks. The data must be correct, complete and compliant.
After establishing that the electronic data meet the required quality, the e-freight team will activate your account by sending you the Activation Notice via e-mail, which will finalize our e-AWB agreement. This agreement is valid only for one specific branch/country : a global organization cannot get all its branches activated at the same time.

Step 5: From now on, send your FWB/FHL messages as the legal contract of carriage

Once your e-AWB agreement has been finalised, your FWB and FHL messages will now serve as the legal contract of carriage and you can deliver your shipments without paper MAWB and HAWB documents.

Please insert the proper special handling code according to the delivery:
- EAP for a shipment delivered with some accompanying paper document (paper pouch, DGD …)
- EAW for a shipment delivered without any paper document.

How to use e-AWB for your shipments

Step 1: Forwarder makes reservations with the Carrier

You can make your booking online via MyCargo.
The booking is necessary before sending FWB/FHL messages.

Step 2: Forwarder sends FWB / XFWB

After having made your booking, you will send FWB / FHL messages. Once you start using e-AWBs, you will never need to print paper AWBs (refer to the IATA Single process in the FAQs). The e-AWB will update the operational systems of the airline. It will become the contract of carriage upon delivery of the cargo, when the airline sends the message Received from Shipper (RCS).
Please insert the proper special handling code according to the delivery in every FWB message:
- EAP for a shipment delivered with some accompanying paper documentation (paper pouch, DGD, …)
- EAW for a shipment delivered without any paper documentation.

Step 3: Forwarder will receive FMA or FNA

The FMA is an acknowledgment message from AFKL, sent to the sender of the FWB/FHL. It means that AFKL has received your message in its system and validated it as complete and compliant. You can then deliver your goods to AFKL (if you wish to receive acknowledgment of receipt through an FMA message, please contact our e-freight services).
The FNA is a rejection message from the AFKL system. It points to a syntax/content error in the FWB/FHL message. You will need to correct/modify the FWB/FHL and send it back. The error message specifies the segment name (example: RTD) and describes the error (for example: Missing Rate Class Code).
In addition to receiving a response message from the airline (FMA/FNA), you can also check the validation status of your FWB in MyCargo. Once you log in to your MyCargo account, you can even see the validation details with a description of the errors and warnings. A warning does not prevent your FWB message from being validated, but it serves as an indication of how you can further improve the data quality of your messages.
FWB data quality is important for ensuring fast and efficient services upon delivery. Please correct all the necessary information and resend a valid FWB before the shipment´s delivery, otherwise manual amendments may be necessary that would increase processing time.

Step 4: Forwarder delivers the shipment

Once you have correctly sent your data and you have received back an acknowledgement, you can tender the shipment physically. You are able to update your FWB/ FHL messages until the delivery of the goods.

Step 5: Shipment is accepted

Once documentary and physical acceptance have taken place and been validated, the airline sends the RCS message.

e-AWB Activation Request Form

This request can only be sent after making sure to have fulfilled the conditions of steps 1 and 2. Don´t forget to mention AWB numbers for which you already sent FWB/FHL messages, otherwise we won´t be able to activate your account.

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