Steps In Choosing The Right Freight Company

Your products need to get to their destination and unless you have your own trucks or shipping company, you’re most likely going to use a third-party freight company. With so many out there these days, finding the right one can be overwhelming and frustrating. You want to make sure that you choose the right freight transport company to handle your goods with care and get them to their destination on time. In order to help you with your search, here are some tips on how to choose the right freight company for the job:

Understanding the Freight Services, You Need

In order to find the right freight company, you’ll have to first understand what sort of freight services are needed in order to choose the one that best fits in with your needs. You’ll have to determine your transportation preference, if you’ll need and specific services and all the details of what you plan to ship before you contact a company. Put together a list of things you want like time frame, speed delivery, special packaging and more so that you’re clear on your needs.

Take Time to Research the Industry

By doing a bit of research on the freight services industry, you’ll be able to understand better what a freight transportation company will and won’t do for you. The research will help you understand various industry terms and regulations that will impact your choice of what company to go with.

Trust Your Gut to Go with Experience

When looking for freight services, you’ll want to go with a company that not only offers a great price, but also has years of experience in the industry. When a company has experience, they know how to handle packages and what it means to provide excellent customer service since they’ve been doing it for so long. If you can, get references to help you make your decision based on what others have said or experienced with that company.

Look for Great Customer Service

The right freight company is the one that will provide the best customers service. You want to make sure the company will communicate well with your about the service from the day they get your goods to the day they deliver them.

Learn more about Matrix Transportation and the transportation services they offer including: dedicated truckloads, JIT truckloads, less than truckload (LTL), same day expedited FTL and LTL, full truckload, warehousing, cross-docking, and trailer rentals at  To contact one of our trucking experts call toll free 888.896.2405 today.

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Updated reports on female representation in trucking

The Women In Trucking Association (WIT) partnered with the National Transportation Institute (NTI) to create an index tracking female representation in the industry.

WIT’s priority is to attract more women to trucking in order to increase the percentage of female professionals, so to more accurately chart these numbers, it partnered with NTI, which specializes in research.

Narrowing the focus, NTI included two additional questions to their research responses last year to differentiate between women drivers and women in leadership positions. A January 2017 report found women were merely 7% of female over-the-road drivers and totaled 23% of management. This varies from the Department of Labor’s single estimate of women who are “driver/sales workers and truck drivers,” a notably dissimilar category from NIT’s “over the road drivers.”

In recent NTI findings, female driver representation grew from 7.13% in January to 7.89% at the end of December, and women in management grew from 23% to 23.75% in the same time. Also showing improvement is carriers — in the last two years, these companies displayed 19% better tracking, and more companies became involved, which in theory means comparisons and discussions are more common. Of those companies that reported data, more than a quarter of the carriers confirmed a 28.7% increase in female drivers.

According to NTI chief operating officer Leah Shaver, companies involved are guaranteed confidentiality; data and names are not released without permission, granting anonymity to participants. To join those who have already contributed and share your company profile, visit

Along with its NIT partnership, WIT also works with Memphis University to monitor the percentage of women in management and board positions of publicly traded carriers. The data shows 12 of the 16 associations have directors who are women, and six out of 15 companies have females filling management positions.

Original Source:

Original Date: May 1 2018


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Growing Your Business Using Reliable Freight Services

When it comes to growing your business, it is important to work with a company that offers complete and reliable freight services.  Your success comes from a number of elements working together throughout your business most of which rely on the support of a consistent logistics provider.  Reliable transportation services are used to keep the flow of products coming and going in an efficient manner.  This is done by finding a logistics partner that offers an approach to your freight distribution that is strategic to your business’s needs.

Key parameters to evaluate freight partners:

  • Logistic support that aligns with your time and budget constraints: Logistic partners must understand that each company has individual requirements in regards to their unique time limitations and regulated budget. Different levels within your company may have differing needs when it comes to time and budgets, so it is important that the logistics support received adjust with each unique layer of your business as needed.


  • Logistic support that offers one unified system for your freight transportation needs: When logistic support comes from one complete system there are fewer hassles and less costs associated with service. It allows employees to be trained and rely on one platform thus avoiding unnecessary training and outside support services.


  • Logistic support that provides automated processes for your specific company: Not all logistic support services can be automated however when services can be they should be.  Automated services allow for more efficient and quicker results.


  • Logistic support that is trackable through a single dashboard: Logistics that can be controlled and tracked through one platform helps to create a sound system. One reliable point of access for logistics allows for a perfect flow of service.


  • Logistic support that handles your freight management challenges: When challenges arise, you want a logistic team that can handle the complications and create solutions that are optimized for results.


  • Logistic support that performs even during peak periods: It should not matter when services are needed your logistic support team should perform as expected every time. Whether it is during a period of slow operations or peak plus logistics support should allow you to flawlessly operate.


  • Logistic support that helps you stay ahead of competitors: If logistics support providers are working to grow their technology and business delivery then they won’t be able to do this for you. Growth within their operations will transfer to you which allows you to stay one step ahead of your competition.


Learn more about Matrix Transportation and the transportation services they offer including: dedicated truckloads, JIT truckloads, less than truckload (LTL), same day expedited FTL and LTL, full truckload, warehousing, cross-docking, and trailer rentals at  To contact one of our trucking experts call toll free 888.896.2405 today.

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Trucker gets lost in the woods with truck full of chips, doesn’t eat any

Truck driver Jacob Aaron Cartwright, 22, went missing Tuesday in Eastern Oregon.

(CNN)When Oregon truck driver Jacob Cartwright first set out on Tuesday to deliver a shipment of potato chips, he never expected to emerge from the wilderness four days later — on foot.

And, despite being lost in the woods, the 22-year-old didn’t touch the chips he was transporting, said his boss, Roy A. Henry, the owner of Little Trees Transportation.

Cartwright had been driving from Portland to Nyssa, Oregon, a town near the Idaho border, trying to make a delivery by 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday, CNN affiliate KATU reported.

But his GPS system sent him up the wrong road and into a “remote and mountainous location,” the Oregon State Police said.

Henry said Cartwright entered the wrong address, but because he’d never been in that town before, he couldn’t tell whether he was going the right way or not. He continued following the GPS, not knowing he was going the wrong way. It was the middle of the night at that point, Henry said, and Cartwright had missed three opportunities to turn around.

Once Cartwright finally decided to try and turn around, police said the 18-wheeler began sliding toward a steep embankment and got stuck on the snowy and muddy road.
With no cellphone signal, Cartwright began walking back along the road he was driving on and at some point began walking through the forest to find someone to help him free up the truck, Henry said.
“He said he didn’t stop, he walked 12-13 hours a day all three days,” Henry said. “He told me the last night, he wedged himself under a log and the ground to stay warm and stay out of the elements.”
State police searched for Cartwright and the truck during the four days he was missing.
“Luckily it wasn’t snowing last week, it was very warm last week,” Henry said.

Cartwright ended up finding his way to Interstate 84 on Saturday, where he flagged down a driver who gave him a ride to his home in La Grande, Oregon, about 9 miles away. He was taken to the hospital for evaluation. The trucking company posted to its Facebook page Saturday, saying “JACOB HAS BEEN FOUND ALIVE!!!!!”

“He was so dehydrated that his kidneys stopped functioning,” Henry said, adding that Cartwright also had possible frostbite in his right foot. Henry said he joked with Cartwright about having a truck full of chips and wondered why he didn’t eat any of them.

“That stuff’s worth something, that’s the load — I’m not gonna touch it,” Henry said Cartwright told him. “That’s the way he was raised, that stuff’s not yours, you don’t touch it.”‘

Original Source:

Original Date: April 29 2018

Written By: Nicole Chavez

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The Differences Between LTL and FTL Freight Shipping Options

For businesses that ship out products throughout the nation it is important to know the differences between LTL and FTL freight shipping options. It is obviously important for businesses to save as much money as possible on shipping costs for products, but this is especially true if you want to save money on large shipments that weigh more than 100 pounds.

Your best two options in shipping large orders are Less Than Truckload Shipping (LTL) and Full Truckload Shipping (FTL).  It not only makes sense to look for an affordable trucking company to ship your products it is crucial to work with companies that offer personal customer service, on-time shipments, and guarantees that your products are delivered as intended.

Consider the following differences in shipping LTL and FTL in order to make an informed decision for your company’s products.

Full Truckload Shipping

One of two things are possible when you hire a full truckload:

  • You have a shipment that will fill an entire truck.
  • You have a shipment that will not fill the whole truck, but you want a truck dedicated to only your shipment.

Most business’s that choose FTL freight shipping do so because they are shipping more than ten pallets, any which are considered high-risk packages.  This option is also plausible if you are short on time to have your shipment delivered.  FTL is a faster shipping option than LTL.  Full truckload shipping usually costs more than less than truckload shipping mainly because it will get your shipment to where ever it needs to be much faster.

Less Than Truckload Shipping

Unlike FTL, LTL shipping is when you share one truck with multiple other customers. It’s a more budget-friendly option for companies who are shipping average or stable products. The cost of the transportation for the goods is shared with all the companies using the third-party logistics company and their freight truck.

Companies only pay for how much space their product is taking up and how far it takes to get their products to their final destination. But since the freight shipping truck will make multiple stops, it’ll take longer to ship your product.  Shipments that range from 100 pounds to 10,000 pounds can be shipped using this method, while those higher than 10,000 FTL will be the viable option.

Learn more about Matrix Transportation and the transportation services they offer including: dedicated truckloads, JIT truckloads, less than truckload (LTL), same day expedited FTL and LTL, full truckload, warehousing, cross-docking, and trailer rentals at  To contact one of our trucking experts call toll free 888.896.2405 today.


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These Electric Semis Hope To Clean Up The Trucking Industry

Thor Trucks ET-One, the winner of Fast Company’s World Changing Ideas Award for energy, can haul 80,000 pounds of cargo and travel 300 miles on a single charge.

These Electric Semis Hope To Clean Up The Trucking Industry
[Photo: Thor Trucks]

Growing up in a family business with a fleet of heavy-duty trucks, Dakota Semler saw the business face a difficult choice. New state air quality standards in 2007 meant that the winery would either need to install pricey retrofit kits in each truck or replace the whole fleet. As the economy crashed the following year, they made the decision to shut the fleet down.

“At the time, we figured that somebody would eventually build electric trucks, therefore foregoing the requirements for compliance,” Semler says. By 2016, at the age of 24, he decided that he should bring together a team that could do it themselves. Semler and co-founder Giordano Sordoni, also 24, realized that battery technology, electric motors, and software had advanced to the point where electric trucks could be cost-competitive.

[Photo: Thor Trucks]

In 2017, their startup Thor Trucks–with an engineering team pulled from L.A.’s growing electric vehicle industry–unveiled their design for the ET-One, an electric semi that can haul 80,000 pounds of cargo and travel 300 miles on a single charge. It’s the winner of the transportation category of Fast Company‘s 2018 World Changing Ideas Awards.

While many people might picture semis making cross-country trips, “the reality is that the majority of the Class 8, heavy duty truck market is more local and regional,” Semler says. For truck drivers delivering local freight, or grocery distribution, or for garbage trucks or cement trucks, a vehicle with a short range isn’t an issue. The ET-One can recharge after a workday in 90 minutes.

Unlike Tesla, which is also building an electric semi, Thor Trucks plans to use many off-the-shelf components, and partner with other companies for those parts, along with manufacturing, distribution, and maintenance. “The typical Silicon Valley software approach is to come into a new space and say ‘hey, everyone in this space is stupid and no one’s thought of this clever way of doing things that we thought of, so that’s why we’re going to dominate,’” says Sordoni. “But the reality is that the automotive industry has developed and improved the way it has over the last 100 years for a reason, and hardware is a lot trickier and more difficult than software. There’s compliance and safety regulations, and all kinds of things at play. So we’re more open to partnering within the ecosystem and don’t want to do everything ourselves.”

[Photo: Thor Trucks]

By using a collection of existing components, the startup believes that it can more easily prove to customers that the product is ready to be on roads. “If you are a big parcel delivery company, for example, you don’t want a truck that’s a research project,” he says. “You don’t want a truck that has brand new components that were just invented six months ago.” The new truck also won’t be autonomous, unlike Tesla’s semi, which has some self-driving features. Others, like Mercedes-Benz, are exploring fully autonomous trucks. Thor believes that drivers will have a role to play in transportation for the foreseeable future, particularly on short or mid-range routes–someone like a UPS driver only spends a fraction of their time actually driving.

All of these factors, along with the fact that electric vehicles are less complex than traditional vehicles with internal combustion engines (a traditional diesel truck engine has 16,000 parts, and an electric truck of the same size has 16), meant that the team was able to create a design in six months, with no outside funding. The company is demonstrating the electric semi now, and will begin demonstrating other electric trucks later this year.

The company is also partnering with an existing manufacturer with the capacity to quickly scale up production when the trucks come to market in 2019. “I think there are a lot of levers in place right now to make rapid adoption of this technology very much possible,” says Semler. Though the truck will cost more up front than a diesel truck, customers will save on fuel and maintenance over time, making it cost-competitive–but without any of the pollution problems of diesel.

It could be the first cost-competitive electric semi to make it to market, though Tesla is also aiming for 2019. As fleet owners begin to shift away from diesel, the change will impact health–the exhaust can worsen asthma, heart disease, and other illnesses–and the climate. Transportation is now the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. “I wanted to do something that was a force of social and environmental change but also had an economic incentive behind it,” says Sordoni, who suffered from asthma as a child. “When we’re successful, we’ll not only be a sustainable business, but also be giving back to the environment and communities when people don’t have to breathe in diesel fumes.”

Original Source:

Original Date: 4-9-18

Written By: Adele Peters

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5 Considerations of Choosing A Freight Carrier

In order to get the best value for your money while receiving and sending your shipments on time and in the best condition possible you need to find a suitable freight carrier.  Your shipments are worth a great deal to you and need to be handled with the utmost care.  Shipments need to be received on time and in perfect condition to maintain your business’s reputation within the industry.  There are 5 critical elements that need to be considered when looking to find the most suitable carrier for your shipments.  Let’s explore this in a bit more detail.

  • Safety of Your Shipment

When looking into available shippers it is reasonable to expect that anyone in the race for your business is fully licensed and insured.  As a business owner it is your responsibility to only consider a freight company that insures your shipment and offers compensation in case of causalities that occur along the way before shipments have reached their preferred destinations.

  • The Type of Shipment

Take a look into the type and volume of your shipments.  This will allow you to identify the most suitable freight companies to handle your shipments.  Often times, business owners decide to work with a freight broker who will handle the detail of finding a freight company for you.  However, if this is not an option or you prefer to keep the logistics of your company in house look for a freight carrier that has a record of transporting goods that match yours and your area of trade.  Some freight carriers and trucking companies offer diverse services while other specialize in one shipment type. The same is true for service areas; while some companies service the entire US and global shipments others stick to specific regions, such as the Midwest.

  • Shipping Areas

As previously mentioned there are companies that only ship regionally.  Obviously, this element is crucial.  It is important that you consider freight carriers that serves your region.  Consider working with a company that offers freight services from your preferred destination to your nearest local terminal for purposes of convenience and accessibility of your shipment. You can use this company for future projects.

  • Regular Shipment

If you are having weekly or monthly regular shipments, you need to identify a freight carrier that can handle your regular loads and deliver your shipment right on time, right where you want them to depend on the nature of your business.

  • Market Rates

Before paying for the services, you need to know whether you will get value for your money. Expensive is not always the best. Finding a freight carrier that offers top quality services at the most reasonable rates is most important for your business.

Learn more about Matrix Transportation and the transportation services they offer including: dedicated truckloads, JIT truckloads, less than truckload (LTL), same day expedited FTL and LTL, full truckload, warehousing, cross-docking, and trailer rentals at  To contact one of our trucking experts call toll free 888.896.2405 today.

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Weather Company Aims to Give Truckers Full Forecast

Truckers Full Forecast

In the past, the trucking industry has relied on weather information that is vague and one-dimensional. That is changing.

The Weather Company wants to provide truck drivers with a more detailed snapshot of weather information before they hit the road.

The data company – which is owned by IBM and serves a handful of industries such as aviation, agriculture and energy beyond its consumer-facing Weather Channel brand – has already released a briefing tool that delivers weather information to drivers via a mobile app.

Now it’s working to translate weather and road conditions data into traffic pattern predictions along specific routes.

With the briefing tool, drivers can see how weather will tangibly affect their drives, said John Bosse, who heads up The Weather Company’s ground transportation business. They can also receive alerts of upcoming weather events.

Most truck drivers use free mobile apps like Yahoo Weather and the company’s own Weather Channel for weather information along their routes.

It presents an abstract picture because truckers receive little clarity about what implications the weather has on traffic and driving conditions, Bosse said.

The “cobbled together” overview doesn’t give veteran drivers like Idella Hansen much insight into route planning. A driver for IBI Secured Transport from Camden, Ark., Hansen said her philosophy is, “I’ve got to go, so I go anyway, and I go until I can’t.”

With traditional weather apps that depict colorized radar data, the other information the driver really cares about is missing, Bosse said. The Weather Company’s method is different because it tracks six parameters that will affect truck driving, including fog, high winds, wet roads, puddling, snow and ice.

It provides drivers “a much better view of the next several hours out in front, so there should be no surprises,” he said.

In the future, the company plans to add a predictive traffic service that uses weather data and machine learning to better forecast traffic speeds.

If a tool like this were released, “I would jump on that,” Hansen said.

After its 2015 acquisition by IBM, The Weather Company looked for ways to expand, Bosse said. Freight and ground transportation were an “obvious choice” given the company’s four-decade history with air transit, providing weather forecasting and measurement products for pilots and ground crews.

Unlike pilots, who are required by the Federal Aviation Administration to consult weather information before takeoff, truck drivers do not have relevant, high-quality weather resources when trip planning. “It just seemed inefficient,” Bosse said.

With more data, drivers will be able to make better decisions about what they can drive through with considerations for what they’re hauling, as well as prepare for any accidents up ahead, he said.

An alert service with text-to-speech capability can also be set to ping drivers in advance of upcoming weather events along their routes.

“Any time you take one distraction away from a driver will make him a safer driver,” said Allen Lowry, vice president of safety and risk management for USA Truck.

“It would be so beneficial safety-wise, not just for the transportation industry but for other drivers on the road,” Lowry said.

The Weather Channel focused on the driver first, because driver decisions are “where the rubber meets the road and where the important costly decisions get made or are negatively impacted,” Bosse said. Better-informed navigational decisions have the potential to save gas, prevent accidents and improve on-time performance.

The new vertical has big potential, he said.

The technology has “legs” in many of The Weather Company’s other businesses, including its consumer application, Bosse said. For now, free weather services like its own present its biggest competition.

The very collection of this data is another space where the trucking industry and weather information could intersect, said Randy Baker, senior meteorologist for UPS Airlines.

Since 1997 the National Weather Service has been compiling weather information from sensors on airplanes like the ones in UPS’ fleet, Baker said. That information yields much higher quality data than what can be collected from weather balloons.

There is a similar potential to gather better ground-level information from sensors on vehicles to “improve the accuracy of forecasting models” for ground transportation, he said.

UPS has done some preliminary testing on this, monitoring windshield wipers and air temperature readings. The company is now pondering different ways to collect information from vehicles that in real time can be dropped into a computer model for analysis, Baker said.

The Weather Company’s mobile app-based trucking tool is available to fleets for an annual fee based on user count, ranging from about $30,000 for a small fleet to hundreds of thousands of dollars for a large fleet, Bosse said. It is working on a web version for dispatch use.

Original Source:

Original Author: Emma Hurt

Original Date: Mar 20 2018

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Main Factors Affecting Freight Charges

The cost of transporting commodities from one place to another is affected by various factors.  Freight charges may vary from one destination to another but there are standard issues that influence shipping rates on a global level.  These include:

Mode of Transport:  This allows business owners to choose the right means of transportation depending on the size, perishability, and the fragile state of the cargo.  Large shipments require spacious cabins and well-equipped freight vehicles.  Some goods are too delicate to fit all in one truck, hence the option of cargo trains in transportation.  If you are transporting perishable items through the air, the cost will be higher than opting for a truck equipped with preservatives.  Water transportation takes longer and carries heavy equipment; therefore, freight rates differ according to the amount or the number of items in question.

Weight: The less than truckload shipping (LTL) rates are set in a manner that favors the heaviest loads.  According to carriers, LTL costs less per a hundred pounds for heavy cargo, but freight charges are distributed using the various weight groups set aside for all shipments.   On that account, more weight means high freight rates and vice versa.  For supply chains, full truckload (FTL) is cost effective and fast.  Their freight rates follow the same rules as the LTL, but the latter makes fewer or no stops.

Distance and Time: Shipping companies charge less while delivering within their geographical location, but they sometimes tend to receive items for clients beyond their reach.  Instead of returning the cargo, they transfer it to the nearest LTL carrier who in turn charges more for the final delivery.  Basically, the longer the distance, the higher the price.  Just in time (JIT) deliveries are charged more due to the urgency of the products in question.  Most carriers have a specific time assigned for transportation.  On that note, it will cost more to adjust the company’s schedule or ensure fast delivery.

Density and Classification of Freight: To determine density, shippers take the total weight of the cargo and divide it by mass. Also, include detailed information about the package’s physical appearance (i.e., protrusions or overhangs). The denser a shipment is, the lower the charges and the lighter it is, the higher the price. How so? The LTL freight rates are classified according to the various classes (ranging from 50-500) established by the NMFTA (National Motor Traffic Association). They fall into lower and higher-class levels. The former represents freights that are dense and easy to handle while the latter covers the light and fragile shipments.

Other factors include:

  • Extra services given by carriers beyond their usual routes, drop off points, or docks involve making deliveries inside a prison, jail, school or church. Adding another extra mile to their schedule means more fuel hence higher freight rates.
  • Negotiations can be carried out between a carrier and a client in cases where the shipment falls into the lower and higher class. Vendors transporting multiple commodities seek the Freight All Kinds (FAK) rates because the rates are cheaper despite the shipment’s weight.

Learn more about Matrix Transportation and the transportation services they offer including: dedicated truckloads, JIT truckloads, less than truckload (LTL), same day expedited FTL and LTL, full truckload, warehousing, cross-docking, and trailer rentals at  To contact one of our trucking experts call toll free 888.896.2405 today.

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The Role of Trucking in Logistics Business

Logistics encompasses a combination of production and the delivery of a product or service to ensure efficient and effective management of various warehouse and distribution companies. Logistics management matters because it controls the flow of supplies to match the needs of the manufacturer with the schedule of sales to customers. It also coordinates the flow of information in terms of delivering feedback about sales, financing, and the delivery of product from various suppliers.

Trucking, on the other hand, involves the research and planning of trucking operations and considers all the factors involved in the transportation of goods by trucking companies with the goal of maximizing productivity and efficiency. In trucking logistics, distribution companies analyze trucking routes to improve efficiency through the reduction of delivery times including putting into consideration the type of load being transported to determine the best shipping method of goods.

Depending on what you want to transport and where you have the following services to choose from:

Just-in-Time Truckload (JIT)

This freight forwarding service specializes in the transportation of oversized goods on flatbeds, multi-axle trailers, or step decks. The Just in time truckload services includes same day land delivery in a local area or air freight services that can either be same day or next day. JIT transportation services are location-specific to ensure that a client’s shipment arrives at its destination on time, hence reducing storage and inventory cost while allowing customers to track their products in transit.  3pls prefer the Just in time truckload method because there are minimal inventory levels, which makes it cost effective as it minimizes the number of consignments a client can hold at a time. The turnaround of stock is equally fast, which also minimizes the risks of damaged or stolen goods.

Full Truckload Shipping (FTL)

Full truckload shipping is a cost-effective and practical solution for any large domestic shipment especially for time-sensitive, delicate or high-risk freight because the goods stay in the same truck during the entire journey. Full truckload shipping is a faster and safer method of transportation where companies dedicate an entire truck to a single client, regardless of the weight or size of the shipment. There are no stopovers, and the goods are not handled en route until they reach their destination. This minimizes the chances of mishandling or damaging the consignment.

Less Than Truckload shipping (LTL)

This shipping solution has several advantages as well as disadvantage. Less than truckload is cost-effective because clients only pay for the space they use rather than paying for the entire trailer as they would with FTL. The downsides are, shipments are handled several times through the duration of transit and often change trailers several times before reaching the destination. As a result, shipping companies must spend additional resources on the packaging of a product to minimize the potential for damages. Consignments in the Less than truckload method also does not come with guaranteed delivery unless requested, which increases shipment costs.

Learn more about Matrix Transportation and the transportation services they offer including: dedicated truckloads, JIT truckloads, less than truckload (LTL), same day expedited FTL and LTL, full truckload, warehousing, cross-docking, and trailer rentals at  To contact one of our trucking experts call toll free 888.896.2405 today.


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