A contract of carriage is a legal agreement between a carrier and a shipper, outlining the terms and conditions governing the transportation of goods. It details the obligations, responsibilities, and rights of both parties involved, including in cases of loss or damage. This agreement can be in paper or electronic form, depending on the preferences of the parties involved and legal requirements.
Various international conventions, including those under the auspices of the United Nations, have been established to standardize contracts of carriage, ensuring uniformity in the application of rules across different countries. It can include various forms such as air waybill, bill of lading, sea waybill, or charter party.