The flow of "export" goods at departure follows the following pathway in a cargo terminal:
reception on a “town-side” berth,
registration (weighing, completion of airway bill and corresponding bills,
storing in a warehouse (under customs control if necessary),
putting onto palettes, i.e., grouping by destination and flight (palette or container),
weighing and warehousing on runway side awaiting loading onto aircraft.
- Mayotte Airport Cargo, runway side
- STAC Photo Library /Véronique Paul
The warehousing phase does not take place if preparation is continuous, that is, if all the packages are immediately placed in a container or on a palette, which is current practice for high flow of traffic leaving regularly for a given destination.
Sometimes the cargo is loaded “in bulk” in boxes of small dimensions which can easily be adapted to the holds of any vehicle.
- Marseille Provence Cargo conduit towards embarkation
- STAC Photo Library/Alexandre Paringaux
Merchandise undergoes three types of checks:
physical safety check; when this has to be done in the cargo terminal it is done before being put onto palettes,
customs control by spot checks aiming to stop illegal transportation,
health checks, if necessary, for some perishable goods, either plant or animal.
Flow of "import" goods goes on the following pathway:
unloading from the aircraft,
introduction into the cargo terminal,
separation and then storage before delivery,
physical check of merchandise if necessary.
For the flow of goods "in transit" : if the loading units (palettes/containers) do not require intermediate splitting, they are transferred immediately from the import to the export side. If they contain packages for different destinations, they follow the import and export pathways described above.