Every day tons of products are shipped from one corner of the world to another. These include consumables such as products used in homes, clothes, entertainment items, books, electronic gadgets, and many more. Of crucial importance is to get these products to the doorstep of the consumer in the same state they left the warehouse. It gets tricky if a product is perishable, which means it has to be shipped in a befitting manner.
To ensure products reach consumers in the same state they were shipped, you need to use the right freight shipper. Below are a few common types of freight shippers you can choose from.
1. Air Freight
If you need to ship a product really fast, air freight shippers are the best for your cargo. These types of freight employ the use of planes to ship products both internationally and domestically. While it is quick and efficient with simple logistics, air freight is also quite expensive. Use it only when making sure a product arrives on time is more important than the cost. When it comes to a choice between air freight and other types of shipping, the need for speed is the determining factor.
2. Ocean Freight
If you are looking for the most inexpensive type of freight, doing so via ship freight is the way to go. However, use this mode of freight if you are not in a hurry to get your products to a consumer. This is because ocean freight is the slowest shipping method. It involves stocking products into large shipping containers, which are offloaded at ports and loaded onto trains or trucks for onward transportation to their final destinations.
You can use ocean freight to ship products, both domestically and internationally. Ocean freight usually involves a lot of logistics, and products using this type of shipping are subject to a lot of potential ocean vulnerabilities. It is crucial that products are packed and stored appropriately in containers before freighting them by sea.
3. Rail Freight
While shipping products by train could take longer than using trucks, you won’t have to contend with road traffic or run into road accidents. It can sometimes be faster than road transportation, especially as more high-speed cargo trains hit the market. Besides, trains are more eco-friendly and economical since they can pull more containers than trucks.
Rail freight is ideal for international and domestic shipping. In most cases, trains pick up the loads where ships leave them. Once ships dock at a port, the offloaded containers are loaded onto trains for onward transportation further inland.
4. Ground Freight
Ground freight involves transporting cargo locally and across the country using trucks. One truck of standard size could ferry as much as 26 pallets, with each pallet measuring 48”Wx40”Lx48”H. A double pallet is anything above 48”.
Among ground freight shipping options include Less Than Truck Loads (LTL), which is the most popular type of ground shipping, Full Truck Loads (FTL), which combine the ability to ship extra-size loads and also uses refrigerated trucks, and Partial Truck Loads (PTL), whose rates are comparable to those of LTL but with the added benefit of FTL shipping times.
5. Full Truck Loads (FTL)
FTLs have a typical load capacity of between 24 and 26 pallets. For this type of freight, you can make shipments straight from a pick-up to the destination since these are full trucks. Full truck loads can ship over-size loads and often used refrigerated trucks.
6. Less Than Truck Loads
These are also abbreviated as LTLs. They can ship cargo that is smaller than a truckload but larger than a parcel. It can ship between one to six pallets. Less than truckloads are the most preferred method of ground shipping. As they ferry cargo, they make stops along the way to transfer it to other trucks for onward shipment via local terminals.
Since the load is shared, and the fact that they have to make stops along the way, it takes longer to ship with LTLs than it does with Full Truck Loads, which ship directly to their destination. However, LTLs are a cheaper option compared to other ground shipping truckloads.
7. Partial Truck Loads (PTL)
A partial truckload typically carries six to eight pallets. While their rates are comparable to those of LTL, they enjoy the FTL shipping times, mainly because they are expected to be transferred to different trucks, although this rarely happens.
Freight shippers are daily looking for ways to make the process of shipping cargo and dealing with freight movement logistics more efficient. The future of the cargo shipping industry appears bright as the idea of driverless vehicles become even more plausible. We might also see the entry of drones in the shipping industry as technology continues to advance. These developments notwithstanding, the most cost-effective and efficient freight shipping methods are trucks, trains, planes, and ships.