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Understanding the Difference Between e-Manifests and Customs Entries

It is important to understand that Customs is focusing on different information in an e-Manifest and an Entry.

  • A Manifest, or e-Manifest, provides US Customs with information about physical goods moved between a shipper and a deliver-to party
  • An Entry provides US Customs shipment and product-level information for a financial transaction between a seller and a buyer.

While most Entries and e-Manifests would have the same seller as shipper, and buyer as deliver-to; many transactions are sold by one company and shipped from another, or bought by one location and delivered to another. For this reason, the parties listed on an e-Manifest and an Entry will frequently vary.

The following diagrams help explain how e-Manifests and Entries relate to each other.

Single Shipment e-Manifests

The first diagram shows an e-Manfiest with a single shipment. As previously mentioned, the shipper and the seller may be the same party, however, they do not have to be. Likewise, the buyer and the deliver to may be the same party, but do not have to be.

Diagram of 1 shipment on 1 e-manifest

Downloadable/Printable version (214 KB PDF)

Multi-Shipment e-Manifests

The second diagram shows an e-Manifest with two shipments. Here’s a good example of when this might be applicable:

  1. ABC Manufacturer (Ontario) sells 100 hammers to Bob’s Hardware Company (Michigan). Bob’s Hardware Company has 2 stores (Illinois and Indiana) which each will receive 50 hammers via the same trip.
  2. The Entry would show 100 hammers sold by ABC Company to the buyer Bob’s Hardware Company (Michigan). The Shipment Control Numbers 12345 and 12346 would be placed in the Entry and would tie it to each of the e-Manifest Shipments.
  3. The e-Manifest would show 2 shipments for that trip since there are two distinct deliver to addresses. One shipment would be dropped off in Gary, Indiana (SCN: 12345) and the other in Chicago, Illinois (SCN: 12346).

Diagram of 2 shipments on 1 e-manifest

Downloadable/Printable version (253 KB PDF)