Why Partial Truckloads are a Beneficial Way to Ship Freight

Partial Truckloads

Partial truckloads are beneficial for both the shipper and the freight carrier.  When the load of goods doesn’t fill up a truck, partial truckloads can help decrease the cost to ship.  Often companies fall in between the more common types of shipping.  Meeting the requirements for less than truckload (LTL) shipping is hard for most businesses, however many of them don’t ship enough goods to fill up a truck or make it worth the cost of a full truckload (FTL).

This is when using partial truckload shipping is the most cost effective option.  Freight shippers offer this option to their customers to help them ship more efficiently and pass on their cost savings to their customers.  Logistics Consultants, like Larry Mullne, recommend that freight shippers fully evaluate their processes and the services they offer when implementing a cost saving plan.  Utilizing partial truckloads to increase effectiveness is one of the things he teaches shipping companies how to do when he helps them take control of their shipments and their costs.  He, like many other logistics experts, believes that controlling shipments fully allows companies to control their costs.

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What are partial truckloads?

Partial truckloads is a method of freight shipping that many carriers offer as a service to their customers.  The term partial truckload comes from the truck being partially filled with goods by their customer.  This type of shipping method is often more cost effective for smaller and mid-sized companies that are shipping enough goods to fill more than a handful of pallets.  Partial truckloads fall in-between less than truckload and full truckload shipments, meaning they contain between 6 and 20 pallets.

This type of shipping is best used by national and global shippers to help increase their effectiveness.  Partial truckloads can mean fewer stops and less cost than other modes of shipping.  Freight shippers who offer this method are most likely to have a good understanding of how they ship and how they can control their costs. Shipping companies that effectively utilize partial truckload shipping are typically more affordable, as they can pass on their savings to their customers.


Partial truckloads vs less than truckloads (LTL)

Knowing the difference between types of truckloads is important for customers.  Without knowing the details of shipping methods, they may end up paying more costs and fees than they should.  Less than truckloads (or LTL) are designed to ship smaller amounts of goods.  This means that it takes more stops to fill up that with partial truckloads.  While less than truckloads appear to be cost effective up front, they have a down side as well.  Since less than truckload shipments must be smaller than 6 pallets, loading and unloading will occur on the truck and the chance for damage is increased.  In addition that, the stops can take longer than anticipated and significantly delay the scheduled delivery times.  Once that impacts customer service, the less than truckload option can become more costly than partial truckloads.

Partial truckload shipments can save money on shipping.  They are more cost effective than shipping multiple less than truckloads and typically have decreased risk for damage.  Overall, freight shipping companies that offer partial truckload shipments, like AA Logistics, provide a valuable service for companies that don’t ship enough to fill an entire truck.


Partial truckloads vs full truckloads (FTL)

The biggest difference between the two is that partial truckloads do not require freight class.  Full truckloads are also different than partial truckloads in that they fill up most of the truck.  This type of shipping is the most costly upfront and requires at least 18 pallets. Full truckloads are loaded and then delivered without stops at other locations or other items being loaded onto this truck.  This makes full truckload shipping the type with the least risk of damage to goods.  However, it is not a cost effective option for many businesses.


Benefits of shipping partial truckload

There are many benefits to partial truckload shipping according to Larry Mullne, owner of AA Logistics. Partial truckload shipping is a cost saving option for those shipping goods and the haulers.  Since it doesn’t require freight class or a full truck, the cost and size of the shipment is more practical.  Additional benefits of using partial truckload shipping are below.


Pay only for what is used

Customers don’t have to worry about paying for hidden fees and unused space with partial truckloads as they are calculated by the amount of space the goods take up in the truck.  Using linear feet to measure exactly how much space the shipment takes up to calculate the priceensures that customers only pay for exactly what they use.


No freight class required

Since partial truckload shipments do not require freight class, many of the hidden fees that can be charge are eliminated.  Partial truckloads have predictable costs, unlike other shipments methods subject to hidden charges and fees for things like re-classing.


Decreased risk of damage

Partial truckloads involve less stops than other shipping classes.  They often require fewer stops to load and fewer stops at distribution terminals than other types of shipments.  This translates to decreased risk of damage to goods.


Improved potential for on time delivery

Partial truckloads are more on time than some deliveries.  Since partial truckloads require less stops they have less chance to be unexpectedly delayed.



When is shipping partial truckload the best option?

According to logistics consultant, Larry Mullne, he tells his customers at AA Logistics that shipping partial truckload is the best option when they want more control over their delivery than less than truckloads and are ready to ship more than 6 pallets at a time. That said, sometimes it is more cost effective for a company to ship once per week using partial truckload than twice per week using less than truckloads.  Evaluating more than just cost of shipping with a logistics consultant is highly recommended for anyone looking to gain control over the cost of shipping goods.  Larry says at AA Logistics, his main goal is to help his customers find a cost effective option that allows them to have control over their shipments and how they arrive to their end customer.  For some, using partial truckload shipping is an obvious choice that meets their needs.