A pro number is a progressive or serialized number applied for the identification of freight bills, bills of lading, etc. In other words, it’s a way to keep track of shipments as they move through the logistics process. Pro numbers can be assigned by the shipper, carrier, or third-party logistics provider (3PL).
- Pro numbers are typically eight digits long but may vary in length depending on the company that assigns them.
- They usually start with a two-digit prefix that indicates the type of shipment (for example, ” air” or ” ground”), followed by six digits that uniquely identify the shipment.
For example, if you see a pro number that starts with “85,” that indicates that the shipment is traveling by ground. The first two digits of the pro number can tell you a lot about how the shipment is being transported. Here are some common prefixes:
- Air: 01, 02.
- Ground: 85, 86.
- Ocean: 70, 71.
- Rail: 80.
Knowing the prefix can help you determine the best way to track the shipment. For example, if you see a pro number that starts with “01,” you know the shipment is traveling by air and you can track it using an air waybill number.
Pro numbers are important because they provide a unique identifier for each shipment. This makes it easier to track shipments and avoid mix-ups.