UsChina Shipping, Telex Release and Express Release

Telex Release and Express Release

These are terms that still confuses many people in the industry..

The confusion occurs because these terms are very loosely used in day to day work, rather than being used in its true sense.

First and foremost it must be understood that BOTH are NOT types of bills of lading.

This is a common misconception when customers tell the lines they want “Telex Release Bill of Lading” or “Express Bill of Lading”.

The definition of the two terminologies is as below:


A Telex Release is simply a message that is sent by the shipping line or agent at load port to their office or agent at discharge port advising that the shipper or exporter has surrendered one or all of the original bills of lading that have been issued to them..

Based on this telex release message, the discharge port agent can release cargo to the named consignee shown on the bill of lading without presentation of any original bills of lading.

Telex release is requested only in the case of Straight Bill of Lading and never on a Negotiable Bill of Lading.


uschinashippinguschinashippingAn Express Release is used in “express” situations such as:

· when the shipper and consignee are part of the same group and there are no negotiations required between the two either directly or via bank for release of the cargo

· the shipment doesn’t involve any bank and the shipper doesn’t really need to submit original bill of lading to secure his payment

· when the shipper doesn’t have the time to print the original bills and courier the same to the consignee

· the shipper on the carrier’s bill of lading is a freight forwarder and he wants to issue a house bill of lading to his customers

When the cargo covered under a Seaway Bill is released, the release maybe termed as Express Release.

The KEY DIFFERENCE between the two is that

· Telex Release is issued for a physical set of Original Bill(s) of Lading which is printed, released and surrendered



· Express Release is issued for a Seaway Bill of Lading for which there is NO Original Bill of Lading issued 


So, Telex Release and Express release are NOT THE SAME.


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