What is LTL Freight?

fleet of semi trucks under blue sky

If you run a business that ships all over, it’s important to understand your options.

Truck drivers in the United States recently transported nearly 12 billion tons of goods in a single year. There are numerous methods for transporting materials, including less than truckload (LTL) freight.

This is a classification you need to know about no matter what sorts of goods you ship. So what should you know about LTL?

The tips in this LTL freight guide will help you understand the LTL meaning, in addition to other points of information that can steer you straight.

What Is Freight LTL?

yellow and white semi truck in sunrise

Before anything, you should break down the LTL meaning and what it means for your company. Less than Truckload (LTL) refers to shipments that weigh 15,000 pounds or less.

It could also refer to the size and dimensions of the freight. These loads generally take up less than 24 feet of space in the truck. While they’re less than 150,000 pounds, it refers to shipments that are more than 150 pounds. If the shipment is 150 pounds or less, you’d rely on couriers or parcel services.

You have to assess the nuances and details of this form of freight shipping so that you can use it to your advantage.

Types of LTL

When choosing a company that can handle your freight, start by recognizing that there are different types of carriers that you can do business with. These pros will offer you LTL freight tips so that your goods get to their destination without any setbacks.

Here are some of the main LTL arrangements you might choose to look into:

  • National LTL
  • Regional LTL
  • Asset Light LTL
  • Load to Ride LTL
  • Reefer LTL

Get to know the differences between these types of shipments and seek the LTL freight advice you need for each.

The Benefits of LTL

Once you have LTL freight explained, you should also get to know the advantages. This is half the battle when it comes to understanding LTL Freight, and you’ll feel comfortable investing in this service.

Some of the benefits of LTL include:

  • The shipments are quicker and more convenient
  • It accommodates all types of e-commerce
  • The price is cheaper than a dedicated workload shipment
  • You get in-depth and up-to-the-moment tracking info
  • These shipments are safer and more secure

If you know the benefits, you’re more likely to make sound decisions about your freight and shipping needs.

LTL in Practice

Understanding the meaning of LTL is one thing, but you also have to know how to go about it in practice. Look for the help of LTL freight carriers that can manage your load in a timely manner.

When you have some goods that need shipping, you’ll coordinate with a truck driver that can handle it on their route. Instead of being quoted prices for the entire truckload, you’ll instead be charged for the space that you take up in the back of the truck bed. You’ll also be charged for the amount of distance traveled and whether or not the shipment requires multiple stops.

Understanding the cost of LTL will let you figure out your budget and also shop around for price quotes. Get any LTL freight quote in writing and with each point itemized. To know the variables that you’re dealing with, get a handle on your trucking logistics upfront and discuss them with an LTL freight shipping company that can help you out.

Managing the Details of Your LTL Shipments

Once you partner with a less than truckload freight shipping (LTL), you’ll be given an estimated time of arrival (ETA) of all your goods. From here, you can factor in the timetable to tell your customers.

The LTL shipping fees that you are charged will also let you know what shipping costs to pass along to your consumers. Keep documentation for every aspect of your LTL freight, and double-check your shipping numbers. The best thing you can do is choose a logistics and shipping company that you know you can put trust in.

Find out about their credentials and how long they have been offering shipping services. Seek some recommendations from other companies you know that have relied on these shipping professionals in the past. During the planning phase, these pros will let you know their service map, so you can figure out how your shipment can be put together.

What Is an LTL Shipment At Its Best: Optimize Your Process

To get the most out of your LTL trucking needs, give yourself plenty of time to prepare your shipments. Take some time to arrange your shipment so that it’s easy for your driver to grab and go. Label everything clearly and consider whether anything you’re shipping is fragile or has any special considerations.

You might want to watch the driver loading the inventory into their truck so that you can see for yourself how much space it takes up. You may also choose to take photos for insurance purposes, in addition to investing in a policy for the shipment.

LTL Meaning and Explanation

Now that you have an LTL meaning understanding, it’s time to figure out your company’s logistics needs. This is an essential point in the supply chain and one that deserves your undivided attention.

We’ve got you covered when you need the help of the best LTL pros.

Amertrans Logistics has the logistics and supply chain information and services that you need. Set aside some time to chat with an agent or give us a call.

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