Special Cargo Handling Diploma

About the diploma

Develop a solid foundation for your cargo career by gaining knowledge and skills to accept and handle special cargo products such as dangerous goods, live animals, perishables and pharmaceuticals.

The regulatory requirements for transporting special cargo by air are complex and detailed. The IATA Diploma in Special Cargo helps you understand the intricacies of these regulations and allows you to safely and efficiently handle special commodities.

Diploma code: DIPL-42

What you will learn

This diploma prepares you to

  • Intensify your study of time and temperature-sensitive cargos and the value-added service they require
  • Make appropriate arrangements and reservations for international air cargo shipments
  • Explore the latest industry trends and types of perishable commodities transported by air
  • Explore the latest industry trends and types of Live Animals transported by air

Key subjects

Preparation of dangerous goods for air transport

  • Classification and identification
  • Packing, marking and labeling
  • Documentation

Acceptance of dangerous goods

  • Storage
  • Loading
  • Emergency procedures

Live animal regulations

  • Containers
  • Country and operator restrictions
  • Documentation

Industry standards and best practices for perishable cargo transport

Download the Outline

Who should attend

  • Cargo agents
  • Cargo operations managers
  • Cargo supervisors
  • Regulatory compliance specialists


A passing mark of 70% is required on all assignments and exams. A special distinction is awarded to candidates who obtain a distinction in all, or all but one, of all course exams and assignments that make up this Diploma.

How to obtain your diploma

  1. Complete all Required and selected Elective courses that make up the Diploma, within 3 years.
  2. Please contact us on our Customer Portal to request your diploma, stating the title of the diploma you are applying for and the list of courses you completed for that diploma.
  3. IATA Training will issue your diploma upon verification of your eligibility.

To receive the diploma candidates must complete

  • 3 Required courses
  • 1 Elective courses

Required courses

Live Animals Transportation (classroom)

Learn the most up-to-date airline and government requirements pertaining to the transport of live animals by air.

Perishable Cargo Transportation (classroom)

Gain the knowledge required to ship perishable goods safely and how to comply with the industry standards.

Temperature Controlled Cargo Operations (classroom)

Learn the requirements of the healthcare industry for an air cargo logistics service provider, to become a player in the pharmaceutical logistics market.

Elective courses

Cargo Skills and Procedures (classroom)

Develop a solid foundation for your cargo career by learning the fundamentals of cargo skills and procedures.

Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) Initial Category 6 (classroom)

Gain the competencies to accept, handle and process shipments containing dangerous goods according to the current edition of the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) manual.

Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) Recurrent Category 6 (classroom)

Revalidate your 24-month IATA Dangerous Goods (DGR) requirement and stay up-to-date with the legal requirements, operational restrictions, and documentation regulations for dangerous goods.

Infectious Substances Transport (classroom)

In accordance with Division 6.2 – Category A and B requirements, this course will keep you compliant with regulations for shipping infectious substances, such as those used in medical research and diagnostic fields.

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