Tuesday, May 2, 2017
What is LTL shipping?
Less than truckload shipping or less than load (LTL) shipping is the transportation method of choice for relatively small freight shipments usually for a single item or pallet (also commonly known as a skid) of 150 pounds in weight or more, to several pallets. Often, consumers tend to balk at the idea of using LTL freight for transportation of their ware. There is a misconception that LTL shipping is automatically going to be more expensive and more of a hassle than standard parcel shipments like UPS, or USPS. Surprisingly, LTL is generally more cost effective than parcel shipments on larger orders, and you don’t have to deal with unpacking your ware from outer cases and packing peanuts. At Packaging Options Direct, orders shipped on a skid are commonly stacked case to case on a pallet and then wrapped with plastic to ensure all items stay together. Another plus to shipping orders via LTL is that there is less potential for fragile items arriving damaged. Pallets are moved with pallet jacks or forklifts, and cases are not individually handled like they would be with small parcel carriers.
Determining LTL Shipping Costs
Like parcel carriers, rates for LTL freight are determined by weight, and distance between pickup and destination zip codes; but LTL also looks at class; along with specific delivery needs which can added to the shipment for additional fees (commercial or residential delivery, whether a liftgate or delivery appointment is needed at delivery or not, or if you prefer the ware to be delivered inside or outside).
Common Freight Terms:
Here is a quick reference of common LTL freight terms to help you better understand the ins and outs of LTL shipping:
The freight class is a designation given to specific volumes of materials to help you get standardized freight pricing for the items you are shipping.
Delivery of a shipment to a warehouse, or office building that is solely used for business purposes.
Advanced arrangement for delivery of a shipment
A rear-wheel driven, powered industrial truck used to lift and move materials short distances; also commonly called a lift truck, a fork truck or a forklift truck.
A rear panel that opens upwards. On a trailer, this is often motorized and acts as an elevator for getting freight on and off the trailer.
An area of a building where goods vehicles (usually rail or road) are loaded and unloaded. They are usually exterior, flush with the building, and sealed by metal roll up doors. Generally speaking, a landing bay is the same height of the trailer door for easy access into the trailer.
A wooden or plastic portable platform on which goods can be moved, stacked, or stored, especially with the aid of a forklift or pallet jack.
A manual or hydraulic tool used to lift and move pallets; also sometimes called a pallet truck, pallet pump, pump truck, dog, or jigger.
Delivery of a shipment to any location that can is used as both residence and office (or place of business). A home office, farm, or ranch would all be considered residential locations.
Today’s post concludes with a walkthrough on how to select LTL. When the selection in your cart exceeds 150 pounds you will now be able to select LTL as a shipping option.
1. Begin this process by selecting or filling out your billing and shipping address.
2. Once you click continue you will now see a new shipping option available for selection.
3. Click continue to shipping information area. In this step, you will be able to select the need for a lift gate or delivery appointment. You will also be able to note any special delivery instructions such as warehouse hours or contact information.
4. Continue through the checkout process by selecting your preferred payment method.
5. Verify payment details are correct in the payment information tab.
6. Review your order details and click confirm.
That’s all it takes to get started with our new LTL shipping options.
As always, if you have inquiries regarding this new offering, please don't hesitate to reach out. Our packaging consultants are here to help.
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