A less-than-truckload (LTL) carrier enables you to load and carry your product to its destination for a fraction of the cost of full truckload freight (FTL). When you use only a portion of the truck, you can take advantage of the benefits of consolidating your goods with other freight. Lower shipping costs top the list, but there are other good reasons to consider an LTL carrier.
LTL freight generally involves loads of between 150 and 20,000 pounds. Cargo is classed differently based on density, with denser weight tallying up at a lower cost per pound, as it takes up less space. Your partial load may take up a portion of a 28, 48 or 53-foot truck. You pay only for the space you use. It is then the responsibility of the freight carrier to organize handling and shipment so that your goods are delivered on time and in top shape.
The differences in LTL carriers have largely to do with geography and service. For regional deliveries, it is a major benefit to go with a company that has strategically placed terminals in your market. This convenience mitigates the extra time spent dealing with deliveries other than yours while keeping you on schedule. Plus, a good LTL carrier will employ its own methods of keeping tabs on the details of moving your product, from commodity classification to ease of handling.
Of course, LTL freight is a smart option for the long haul as well. Ground travel by truck is often faster than by rail, which must stick to a rail company timetable. You can maintain control over inventory in transit with GPS tracking technology.
The ground portion of shipping is a critical element to your supply chain. When you choose an LTL carrier to manage your short or long haul transport needs, you drive value to your business. Letting the experts organize your LTL shipments frees you to focus on production.