Reviewed in August 2020. Content will be updated as negotiations develop.

Customs Acronyms – What Do They Stand For?

What is BTI?

BTI stands for ‘Binding Tariff Information‘. 

 A Binding Tariff Information (BTI) decision is a written tariff classification of your goods. It’s not a legal requirement, but it provides assurance that your goods have the correct commodity code etc.

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information . 

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.


What is an EAD?

EAD stands for ‘Export Accompanying Document’. 

Exporters can send Export Accompanying Documents (EAD) to HMRC using a new freepost address for indirect export movements from another member state, where the UK is the Office of Exit and is discharging the EAD. 

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information.

For EU information, see section 6 of Revenue Guide here. 


What is an EHC?

EHC stands for ‘Export Health Certificate’

 A EHC (Export Health Certificate) and other supporting documents are needed to export a live animal or animal product like food or germplasm.

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information.

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.


What is an EIDR?

EIDR stands for ‘Entry in the Declarant’s Records’.

Entry in the Declarant’s Records (EIDR) is a simplified procedure. Under this procedure, an economic operator may be authorised to enter certain goods to the customs important procedure at their premises or another approved location.

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information. 

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.

What is an ENS?

ENS stands for ‘Entry Summary Declaration’

If you import goods into the UK from outside the EU, you must make an entry summary declaration. This will contain safety and security information about your goods. You do not need to submit a declaration for certain goods, you can find a more detailed list here.

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information. 

For EU information, click  here.

What is an EXS?

EXS stands for ”Exit Summary” Declaration. 

This Exit Summary (EXS) declaration is a safety and security declaration which was introduced with the Export Control System (ECS), the EU system for the control of indirect exports. These are export consignments declared for export at a location in one-member state, that then exit the EU through another member state

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information. 

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.


What is GVMS?

GVMS stands for “Goods Vehicle Movement Service”

The Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS):

– Links declaration references together. This means the person moving goods only needs to present one reference at the frontier to prove that their goods have pre-lodged declarations

– Links the movement of goods to declarations, meaning they can be automatically arrived and departed in HMRC systems in near-real-time

For more information, click  here.

What is an ICS?

ICS stands for ‘Import Control System’, which is designed to incorporate:

The lodging, handling and processing of ENS in advance of the arrival of goods.

The handling of UK (Air) port diversions.

The issue of a Movement Reference Number (MRN) – the MRN is a customs computer system generated number that is automatically allocated.

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information .

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information .

What is a MRN?

MRN stands for ‘Master Reference Number’

A Master Reference Number (MRN) is generated by  CHIEF (Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight) for each direct or indirect export declaration. It’s used to identify the consignment within the EU and at the office of exit. 

For indirect exports, the MRN (and bar code) should be included on a paper copy of the Export Accompanying Document (EAD) which accompanies the goods to the office of exit. 

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information. 

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.

What is NCTS?

NCTS stands for “The New Computerised Transit System“. 

The NCTS is a European-wide system, based upon electronic declaration and processing, designed to provide better management and control of CT (Community Transit). It’s used in the UK, all EU member states, common transit countries and Andorra. Each country’s own NCTS processing system is connected, through a central domain in Brussels, to all of the other countries. 

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information. 

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.

What is S&S?

S&S stands for ‘Safety & Security‘. 

It is mandatory for carriers to provide the UK customs authority with advance information, by way of ENS, for goods being brought into the UK from outside the EU. The EU safety and security regulations require that carriers or their authorised representatives lodge electronic entry summary declarations (ENS), also known as safety and security declarations, at the first (air) port of entry into the UK at a prescribed time ahead of the arrival of goods into the UK from outside the EU. 

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information.  

If you are in Ireland, click here for more information.

What is TAD?

TAD stands for “Transit Accompanying Document”

Although the NCTS is a largely paperless system, a covering document known as the TAD must accompany the goods during transit and be presented, together with the goods, at any office of transit en route and at the office of destination.

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information. 

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.

What is a TSS?

TSS stands for ‘Trader Support Service’

At the end of the transition period when the Northern Ireland Protocol comes into force there will be changes to the way goods move between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. If your business is impacted by these changes, you may want to consider the Trader Support Service.

If you are in Northern Ireland, click  here for more information. 

If you are in Ireland, click  here for more information.