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Incoterms: Free On Board (FOB)

Do you know your incoterms? Please see our in-depth guide to Free On Board…



What is the Meaning of Free On Board? (FOB)

“Free On Board” or FOB is one of the 11 official incoterms used in international shipping. This term means that the seller is responsible for delivering the goods to the port of departure. At this point, the buyer assumes responsibility.


FOB Shipping - What Transport Mode Can Free On Board Be Used With?

FOB is restricted to transport via sea or inland waterway, meaning that this specific incoterm has no use for an air cargo shipment.


Shipping Terms - How Does Free On Board Work?

The seller is responsible for delivering the cargo to the nearest port under the incoterm “Free On Board”. The buyer however, is responsible for the costs associated with the transportation from the origin port to the final destination. This includes any other fees which may be payable from that point onwards such as customs clearance at destination, customs duties and taxes at destination and inland haulage at destination.


FOB Overview

  • Once the goods have been loaded onto the vessel, risk transfers to the buyer, who bears all costs from thereafter.


  • FOB is restricted to transport via sea or inland waterway.



  • If you are looking at shipping containerised goods, consider Free Carrier (FCA) as an alternative.


If you have any questions regarding the use of “Free On Board” or any other incoterm, please feel free to contact our team on 0113 250 1155 or email us at:

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