How to Ship Cross-Border Freight

Canadian and US flag

We’re here to help you seamlessly ship your freight across the US-Canada border.


As your Transborder partner, we offer:

  • comprehensive Transborder service to the US
  • industry-leading on-time performance
  • seamless track and trace capabilities
  • border clearance at seven strategic border crossings
  • direct service to over 90% of US population


You can request a quote or create a shipment online in just a few minutes. If you’re not sure where to start with your Canada/US transborder shipment, get in touch with our Sales team today.


While it’s a complex process, it doesn’t need to be difficult. Knowing what documentation is required, how to describe your commodities, and what each country’s security requirements are will help ensure your freight reaches its destination on time.


Check out our cross-border shipping tips below. 

Shipping from Canada to the US?

When you ship from Canada to the US, you need to provide proper documentation:

  • Bill of Lading
  • Proforma Invoice (preferred) or a Commercial Invoice
  • National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) code and class
  • CUSMA /USMCA certificate of origin


There is no official certificate of origin template issued by CUSMA, but they do require that you submit your own. Any format is acceptable, as long as it contains the minimum data elements. You can also use the documents and forms supplied by your own customs broker as long as they contain all the required information as per the US Customs & Border Protection. Always give a copy of the shipping documentation to the driver at the time of pickup. Inaccurate or incomplete information may result in delays.


To determine the NMFC for your shipments, please refer to the National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) guidelines and definitions of a shipment’s actual class.

As your trusted partner, we appreciate your continued support in ensuring that all transborder shipments are compliant with current regulations.

Shipping from the US to Canada?

Make sure you electronically submit the required shipment information in compliance with the Advanced Commercial Information (ACI) eManifest before you ship your cross-border freight. This allows Canadian customs officials to screen your shipment before it reaches the border.


You’re also required to provide detailed commodity descriptions on the Bill of Lading (BOL) and the Commercial Invoice or Proforma Invoice. If you don’t, it might delay your shipments. Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) requires you to answer the following questions:


  • What is it?
  • What is it made of?
  • What is its intended use?
  • How many are there?

For example, if you’re shipping baseball caps, make sure your commodity description says “baseball caps” instead of “caps” to provide CBSA enough information to clear your shipment for entry into Canada.

Visit the CBSA website for a list of acceptable commodity descriptions.

Our participation in CBSA ACI eManifest, Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (CTPAT), and Partners in Protection (PIP) allows us to move customers’ shipments across the border as long as they provide the proper documentation.Shippers who aren’t compliant with these regulations may impact our program certification status, and as a result, may disrupt your own supply chain too.