Puerto Rico Shipping FAQ

Puerto Rico Shipping FAQ

How does my freight get to Puerto Rico?

Con-way Freight moves all freight through one of two seaports: Philadelphia, PA, and Jacksonville, FL. At these gateways, cargo is loaded into secure ocean containers and transported via sea to the Con-way Freight service center in San Juan, Puerto Rico. There, shipments are removed from the containers and delivered to the consignee’s door.

Will my shipments go through Customs?

Puerto Rico is part of the U.S. Customs territory and therefore no customs duties are assessed on products coming from the mainland United States. There is, however, a 6.6 percent excise tax (sales tax) applied on products imported into the island, as well as on those produced locally.

Do I need a freight forwarder to ship to Puerto Rico?

Con-way Freight can make all the arrangements for door-to-door movement of your materials to your customers in Puerto Rico. The same reliable regional and long-haul service can move your shipments to Puerto Rico directly with Con-way Freight.

How do I export to Puerto Rico?

  1. Collect and complete the required documents:
    • Straight bill of lading
    • Commercial invoice
    • Electronic Export Information (EEI) filing is required for commodities valued $2,500 or more. You can provide the ITN # on your bill of lading or provide Con-way Freight authorization to file for you.
  2. Contact Con-way Freight 
    • Get a rate quote. You will need to include the dimensions of the shipment and the commodity class. View freight measuring tips
    • Schedule a pick-up request - you can do this online or by contacting your local Service Center

What paperwork do I need to prepare my shipment to go to Puerto Rico?

The primary documents for tendering Puerto Rico shipments to Con-way Freight are:

  1. A straight bill of lading. 
  2. A commercial Invoice - An invoice must be provided regardless of shipment value for taxation consideration in Puerto Rico
The bill of lading must contain the following information:
  • Consignee’s name, street address, P.O. box (if applicable) and telephone number in Puerto Rico 
  • Commodity description, weight and cube or dimensions
  • Declared value by commodity
  • Consignee’s Puerto Rico excise tax number (where applicable) 
  • Whether shipment charges are to be prepaid or collect
  • A shipper’s export declaration/electronic export information may be required

When is Electronic Export Information (EEI) required?

  • The U.S. Census Bureau requires an Electronic Export & Information (EEI) filing (formerly known as a Shipper’s Export Declaration (SED), if any of the following apply:
    • Shipment of merchandise under the same Schedule B commodity number is valued at more than US$2,500
    • Shipment contains merchandise, regardless of value, that requires an export license or permit
    • Shipment is being sent to Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan or Syria (regardless of value)
    • Shipment contains rough diamonds (regardless of value)
  • An EEI is required for shipments with Schedule B commodities valued over US$2,500 for export statistics and control
  • Products imported from outside the United States into Puerto Rico are subject to regular U.S. import taxes/regulations.
  • Complete the EEI through the automated export system at aesdirect.census.gov or contact our Puerto Rico Customer Care department at CNWY.PuertoRico@con-way.com (866-431-0777) to file this for you. Letter of authorization is required.

What if I file my own EEI?

If you file your own EEI, you must note the following statement on the bill of lading:
  • "NDR AES ITN # ___________________"

This states no declaration is required, the shipper has filed the EEI and include the ITN number in the statement. 

  • In lieu of the statement, the shipper may provide a copy of the AES Direct Shipment Record.
  • A copy of the commercial invoice should still be included to present in Puerto Rico for taxation purposes, if any.

What if there are no commodities valued $2,500 or more?

If there are no commodities valued at $2,500 or more, you must note the following statement on the bill of lading:

  • "NDR – Value is less than $2,500." 

This states no declaration is required because the commodity value(s) is less than $2,500. A copy of the commercial invoice should still be included to present in Puerto Rico for taxation purposes, if any.

Will Con-way Freight file the AES on my behalf?

Con-way Freight works with our customers to ensure compliance with the Census Bureau and Department of Homeland Security regulations. We recommend the shipper file the EEI directly, however, if you have an Authorization form on file with us, you can request Con-way Freight to electronically file the AES on your behalf. A fee will apply.

  • You must note the following statement on the bill of lading: "Authorization form on file"
Contact the Con-way Freight Customs Resource Center to request this service.

Are shipments based on weight or cube for Puerto Rico?

Puerto Rico shipments are rated based on weight and volume (the cubic feet that the shipment takes up in a container). Calculate cube using our cube calculator.

Can I expect the same kind of invoicing for LTL shipments to Puerto Rico?

To make your shipping experience easier, Con-way Freight provides a single invoice reflecting all of the following transportation elements which will include:

  • Inland U.S. freight charges to gateway port of exit 
  • Ocean charges from port of exit to Puerto Rico 
  • Bunker fuel surcharges (assessed by steamship line) 
  • Delivery charges within Puerto Rico 
  • Document processing charges

Helpful Links

Con-way Forms Library
File an EEI
Automated Export System
Schedule B search

Truckload Logistics Freight