Which Freight Shipping Method Offers the Best Value?

by | Oct 7, 2020 | 3PL, Less Than Truckload, Parcel, Truckload

Your business has its own unique needs. Therefore, it’s important to select the shipping solution to help it meet (or even exceed) its goals. Since there are so many shipping options these days, this task may seem quite overwhelming. The good news is that we’re here to outline the differences between LTL, FTL, Partial Truckload, and Parcel shipping so you can make an informed decision for your business.


LTL Freight Shipping

Less than a truckload or LTL freight shipping is an ideal shipping solution for small and medium-sized businesses that send shipments regularly but don’t have enough freight to justify the use of an entire trailer. With LTL shipping, you can save money on shipping your smaller items. Generally, if your freight utilizes several pallet spaces and weighs less than 10,000 pounds, your freight is eligible for LTL shipping. If you opt for LTL shipping, you can expect pricing to be based on factors such as weight, height, density, how easy your freight is to handle, and its liability.

LTL is shipped through freight carriers. Working with a 3PL rather than the carrier directly will allow you to get the best rate for your freight within a centralized dashboard. Amware offers clients the ability to use Amrate, their custom web-based transport management system. Now in its seventh iteration, Amrate 7.0 adds even more value for businesses shipping LTL.


FTL Freight Shipping

Does your business ship a great deal of freight? If so, full truckload (FTL) shipping may make the most sense. It’s a direct shipment method for freight over 20,000 pounds on at least 20 pallets.

Since there are no stops or transfers involved with FTL shipping, you can expect your freight to quickly reach its destination. Your items will only be loaded and unloaded one time, so there is less of a chance for error. Air shipping is the only other quick way to ship your freight, but it is much more expensive than FTL and, in most cases, isn’t justifiable from a cost and supply chain perspective.


Partial Truckload Freight Shipping

Partial truckload offers an option for that in-between size when your shipment is too big for less than truckload (LTL) yet won’t fill an entire truck.

Generally, partial truckload shipments contain greater than seven pallets and/or range from 7,000 to 28,000 pounds, and the number of linear feet taken up by the freight determines the cost.

Although it’s not utilized nearly as often for shipments, Partial Truckload can offer a perfect alternative for numerous situations, including:

  • A shipment of 10+ pallets via Full Truckload that leaves a section of the truck empty
  • Use of Full Truckload when it’s more cost-effective than LTL (again, there can be wasted space)
  • Extended transit times and higher costs due to freight interlining by the LTL carrier
  • Shipping 5,000+ pounds via an LTL carrier
  • Lighter freight with enough volume to make LTL too costly



Parcel Shipping

If your business typically ships smaller packages, parcel shipping may be the way to go. In most cases, parcel freight shipping makes sense if your packages weigh less than 150 pounds, have a combined length and girth measurement of fewer than 165 inches, and are up to 108 inches in length. Parcel shipping has evolved as parcel packages can now be sent through multiple modalities. Also, they differ from other shipping methods because they are not shipped on pallets.

Some companies ship a high volume of parcel freight. This is becoming increasingly more common as e-commerce continues to grow. Businesses shipping a high volume of parcel packages should consider a custom parcel agreement with their parcel carrier. These agreements can be complicated, so any business considering one would benefit from some help in creating or reviewing it. The team at Amware can help with custom parcel agreements.


Contact Amware to Determine the Right Freight Shipping Solution for Your Business

Regardless of your industry and your shipments’ nature, Amware can help you determine the ideal freight shipping option for your needs. We are pleased to offer a variety of freight shipping options, including  LTL, Partial Truckload, and FTL shipping. If you would like to see how Amrate can save your business time and money on LTL quoting and freight shipping, click below for a free 30-day trial.


Amrate 7.0 is Now Available!

Amrate 7.0 moves the Amrate TMS to a whole other level.

What’s new in Amrate 7.0? In addition to all the great features of its predecessor, Amrate 7.0 now offers:

  • The most aggressive pricing we’ve ever been able to offer on LTL and FTL rates
  • Lightning Fast rate returns
  • Fully customizable dashboard 
  • Fully customizable reporting
  • Integration with most database-driven ERP, WMS, and Inventory Management Systems.


About Dan Ramella

About Dan Ramella

Dan Ramella is a member of Amware's executive team, helping drive growth and manage key relationships. With over 20-years experience in the transportation and logistics industry, Dan has helped Amware become one of Northeast Ohio's premier 3PLs