The benefits of Less Than a Truckload or LTL shipping are many, especially for businesses who need to transport small freight or freight that does not require an entire trailer. While we’ve written many articles about LTL and the different aspects of LTL shipping, we wanted to share a few helpful tips you’ll be able to keep handy for your next LTL shipment.
Understand Your Needs and Dimensions
First and foremost, you’ll need to figure out your particular shipment needs. Take the time to measure and weigh your items so that you’ll get accurate quotes. Keep in mind that if you provide inaccurate dimensions, your items may not be able to fit on the truck and you may be charged a fee.
How to Find Your Dimensions:
Measure boxes using a standard tape measure. Find the Length (L), Width (W), and Height (H) in inches. Measure all boxes on your pallet. If you have oddly shaped items, measure the item at its highest and widest point as though it were in a box that size.
Next, in order to find the density of your shipment, multiply the L x W x H for each package. Multiplying the length, width, and height gives you the number of cubic inches for each box. Add all the cubic inches together, then divide that number by 1728. That will give you the cubic feet of your shipment.
Once you have the cubic feet of your shipment, weigh the pallet. Divide the weight by the cubic feet to arrive at the density. While you can find these measurements manually, there are density calculators like this one available on the internet to help you speed up the process.
Note, when measuring the height of your shipment, measure from the base of the pallet to the highest point. As above with oddly shaped items, measure total pallet width including anything hanging over its edge.
Additionally, think about how you’d like your items handled and stored. If your freight is fragile or must be stored in
Use Pallets and Crates Properly
LTL shipping involves the use of pallets and crates to protect your items from damage and expedite the loading process. Crates are wooden containers that can help you organize your items while pallets are portable platforms used for packaging. The standard pallet size in the U.S. is 40 by 48 inches.
If you have fragile and non-fragile items, separate them into their own crates. Also, be sure to wrap fragile items in bubble wrap, tissue paper, or other protective material. Regardless of whether your items are fragile or not, you’ll need to work with your carrier to determine which pallets to use. In most cases, wooden pallets are recommended because they are the most durable.
Fill Out the BOL Correctly
The Bill of Landing or BOL is one of the most crucial documents needed to complete an LTL shipment. If it’s not filled out correctly, there may be confusion and delays. Triple check your BOL before submitting it and make sure information such as the contents of the shipment and shipper contact information is accurate.
Find the Right LTL Provider
It’s important to do your research and find the ideal LTL provider for your needs. You may find that some carriers are experts in truckload shipping while others pride themselves on their exceptional LTL service. Amware is a 3PL, providing supply chain logistics services, including LTL, FTL, and Warehousing. Amware offers clients the option to receive quotes from multiple carriers through their cloud-based LTL software – Amrate.
Contact Amware Today
If you are interested in learning more about LTL shipping through Amware and how it may benefit your small business, we encourage you to contact us today. For a free trial of Amrate, click below.