Caribbean Export Supply Tax and Duty Free Export FAQs

Below are some frequently asked questions which people have submitted to us. We publish these questions and answers for use of the importing and exporting public for evaluation and use in determining their specific needs.

Will my purchases be listed CIF or CNF on my sales invoice or separated on my Freight Invoice?

Most countries within the Caribbean Island Basin and Central and South America assess a tax and or duty on the costs of freight. Many also require that insurance be charged and assess tax and duties on that freight value also. In order to provide a seamless clearance process at Customs in the port of entry we will separate the cargo invoice from the freight invoice.

What is CIF or CNF?

CIF stands for Cargo, Insurance and Freight. CNF stands for Cargo and Freight. These are both Incoterms® which refer to the International Commercial Terms and are defined and administered by the International Chamber of Commerce®. These terminology are used on invoices and bills of lading and usually describe the point at which the shipper and the consignee change ownership or the goods under invoice while in transit. It is imperative that any ambiguity in any terminology be spelled out on the bill of lading and the invoice so that your cargo moves freely in transit to you. It is very easy for extra destination or assessorial charges to be added which may or may not be part of the terms listed on the invoice or bill of lading.

What is tax and duty free?

Taxes and Duties are assessed and collected by many US federal and state agencies in many ways on imports (Federal) and domestic sales (States). When we say or mention “tax free” or “duty free” we mean that we are exempt from paying those taxes or duties on purchases that we sell to you. We as a company do not refund taxes or import duties and in many cases once they are paid by you in a purchased transaction they are non-refundable to you be the retail proprietor. Most companies will not refund or cancel the sale to re-exempt the sales tax of any commodity that is exported. That is why it is imperative for you to contact us regarding your purchases if you want to save money on the tax. All exports regardless of whom they are for are exempt of any and all locally applied state sales tax. So for many purchases you can save an average of seven percent in just sales tax alone by utilizing our tax and duty free services.

When Should I use a Common Carrier?

If your package ways more than 150 lbs, it is too heavy for many and all parcel service’s and you will need the services of a common carrier. Our companion company Stingray Trading LLC. is a US Customs bonded common carrier and has negotiated inland rates with all of the major US carriers.
LTL (Less than Truckload) carriers will transport shipments weighing anywhere from 100 to 10,000 lbs. If your shipment weighs more than 8,000 lbs, it may make better fiscal sense to take an entire truck which means you will need a FTL (Full Truckload) carrier. We provide both LTL and FTL carriers. Either way we can negotiate those rates for you and coordinate the pick-up and delivery of the freight to our warehouse and subsequent loading into the ocean container.

Does Caribbean Export Supply provide air freight or air charter services?

Caribbean Export Supply can provide standard air cargo and immediate air charter services to any country or island of destination. We can also provide cargo and passenger service in the same aircraft. Caribbean Export Supply can have cargo on hand and in the air within an hour in emergencies. Our network of private and commercial aircraft and commercial pilots have a wide range of capabilities to service your specific needs.


Incoterms are a group or series of international sales terms, published by the International Chamber of Commerce ®(ICC) and used in international commercial transactions. They are used to divide transaction costs and responsibilities between buyer and seller and reflect current transportation practices. They closely correspond to the U.N. Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods. For a free and complete reference on Incoterms please click here!