LTL (less than truckload) freight shipping transports any goods that are too large to be shipped as a parcel but too small be shipped as a truckload. Anything that is over half a truckload is typically considered to be a full truckload while anything less than this is considered to be viable for LTL. Here are six useful hints to save you or your company money when using LTL shipping.
1. Research – A little research will give you the best rates for your shipment, so have on hand the information concerning the correct weight and number of pallets that you wish to transport before contacting LTL companies. This information will help you to find out about any discounts that may be available. Also, get to know the LTL companies that serve your delivery area. Unfortunately not all companies can deliver anywhere in the US like Southeastern Freight Lines (SEFL).
2. Planning in Advance – When considering LTL for transportation, a little planning in advance can save you money. If you leave it until the last minute you can sometimes expect to pay extra money for same day pick up fees. This is completely avoidable by planning in advance. The more time that you are able to give for your goods to be transported the less money you will have to spend on these transportation services.
3. Multiple Orders – Multiple orders that going to the same place can save you money if you ship them at the same time. SEFL can pass savings to customers when they ship multiple orders to the same place. Even when they are going to the one location you may not be able to put them on one bill of landing (BOL) and yet savings can still be found.
4. Use Less Pallets – If it is at all possible, then try to pack your goods on as few pallets as you can. Taking up the least square footage possible will almost always save you money.
5. Tracking and Insurance – Always make sure that the company you deal with has a tracking confirmation service and offers insurance on the goods that are to be transported. This may sound like an obvious issue, however it is tempting to look at companies that do not offer these services and then wonder where your goods are when they don’t turn up as you hoped they would. A little money spent on these services goes a long way to ease your mind.
6. Have Your Freight Ready – LTL drivers will have multiple pick-ups. Due to time issues, drivers are sometimes instructed to leave your premises after an allotted amount of time whether they have picked up your freight or not. Because of this, it is imperative that your freight is ready to be picked up as soon as the LTL driver arrives, as you may be liable to pay for a repeat pick-up. Avoid any delays by having an efficient loading system that gives priority to LTL freights, which makes it easier for you, your staff and the driver.