Guide to Freight Shipping Services


Freight is goods transported in bulk by land, sea or air. Freight shipping services are a part of the process of transporting goods from point A to point B.  These types of services can be customized depending on the types of cargo and the shipper’s needs. Goods are usually packed in boxes, crates and containers.  They are then transported by different means of transportation. Freight rates are mostly based on the distance, the size of the shipment as well as the method of shipping.

For stability, protection, and easy loading when shipping goods by truck, crates and pallets are used.   For perishable goods, refrigerated trucks are used. When goods are shipped by sea, they are usually transported in shipping containers. When it comes to air shipping, special air freight pallets that offer protection against extreme temperatures, humidity, pressure, and vibrations up to 500 Hz are used.

What is the difference between freight and parcel shipping?

Freight shipping and parcel delivery are two different things.  The main difference between the two is the weight. Parcels are individual shipments that are very much lighter compared to standard freight pallets. They are handled by common courier services such as the USPS, UPS, and FedEx.  Parcels are taken to a local drop-off point and to be shipped in a box or envelope. A package that exceeds the maximum parcel weight is classified and shipped as freight. A small truck or van is usually used for parcel shipping, while larger packages categorized as freight will require larger vehicles.

Freight transportation modes

There are several freight services available. Each shipment can be customized to meet the shipper’s specific needs.  The type of freight shipping services that best fit the shipper can be determined by the shipper’s budget, the nature of goods that are being shipped, and the speed of delivery.

Ground freight shipping services

Less Than Truckload (LTL) – This option is the best if you do not need to use the whole truck to ship your freight.  One truck is large enough to fit several loads of shipment.  LTL is more cost-efficient and also helps reduce the carbon footprint on Earth.

Full Truck Load (FTL)

If the goods you are shipping require a whole truck, FTL is a valid option. Full truckload is a convenient choice when you have goods that require a whole truck or a dedicated vehicle for a partial load. The standard size of each load ranges between 10,000 and 45,000 lbs. Full truckload uses dry van, flatbeds, and refrigerated trailers.

Rail shipping

Rail is the most affordable mode of transportation for large and heavy goods.  Some of the common goods that are transported by rail are automobiles, grain, coal, stone and petroleum. However, one of the biggest disadvantages of using rail is that additional modes of transportation may be necessary to have your goods delivered.  This in turn may involve additional costs.

Ocean freight shipping 

Of all the different types of freight shipping, air freight is generally preferred for international shipping. There are two types of ocean freight and they are Share a Container and Full Container.

1) Share a Container (LCL)

Share A Container is similar to Less Than Truckload where your goods share a container with another company.

2) Full Container (FCL)

Full container shipping is when your cargo requires the space of a whole container or a dedicated containter for a partial load.  By using FCL, there is no standby time for filling out the container and there is no risk of damage caused by someone else’s cargo. You can expect a quicker and safer delivery.

Air freight shipping services

Air freight is widely used all over the world because it is a safe, quick, and reliable way to ship your products. Smaller shipments are called express freight and are handled by one central company such as DHL, UPS, or FedEx. The second type is international air freight service which is used is used to transport larger goods that require larger planes.  An air freight trip can involve multiple companies. Air freight is much faster than other freight shipping services. Products transported by air are less likely to suffer any damage but are more expensive than other modes of transport.

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