Lufthansa Cargo now only flies with electronic air waybills

Lufthansa Cargo


Digitization of AWB paper airways from summer flight schedule continues to drive digital transformation of air cargo industry

In 2020, IATA announced the industry goal of reaching 100% eAWB by the end of 2022, which means that all shipments will be transported only with electronic air waybills (eAWB ). To achieve this goal and continue to pave the way for the digitalization of the entire air cargo industry, Lufthansa Cargo is now taking a major step towards completely paperless shipments: From the summer timetable on March 27, 2022, all shipments on possible lanes will be transported with an electronic air waybill – eAWB only. Additionally, the airline is introducing a “paper to eAWB” service, whereby the few remaining paper LTAs will be scanned upon shipment acceptance and then continue to accompany the shipment as eAWB.

“Over the past few years, we have led many digitization initiatives in the air cargo industry. In fact, eliminating paper LTAs in the future could be one of the most important steps. The majority of our customers already use eAWB exclusively. With this new service, we can now easily take all customers with us on our digitization journey and also enable them to take the leap to paperless transportation,” says Ashwin Bhat, Commercial Director at Lufthansa Cargo.

“Our goal is to make communication with our customers easier, faster and better through our digital services. We have implemented the eAWB process as an IATA industry standard continuously and globally at Lufthansa Cargo since 2014. A five-year data quality initiative that has effectively decluttered the data interface between customers and Lufthansa Freight was, among other things, an important cornerstone that enabled eAWB’s sustainable penetration and consistent global ranking positions,” said Dr. Jan-Wilhelm Breithaupt, Vice President Global Fulfillment Management. Lufthansa Cargo. “We are very pleased to have achieved our goal of transporting paperless shipments and avoiding unnecessary printing along the process chains with our customers and partners.”

The newly introduced service is mandatory on practicable routes for all carriers not yet using electronic air waybills. The routes that are feasible with the eAWB are those for which the regulatory basis for the use of electronic air waybills is in place. This means that all shippers who have not been able to use the eAWB so far due to their own infrastructure can also switch to paperless transport. If the local regulations of a country require the presentation of a paper AWL, Lufthansa Cargo will replicate the AWB and it will accompany the shipment on the flight. In addition to more efficient transport routes and faster information flows, paper is also saved during transport. This aspect of sustainability also plays into the UN sustainability goals “Climate Action” and “Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure”, to which Lufthansa Cargo is committed with other objectives.

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