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How to Save Time and Money on Freight Shipping

26 October 2017

When you’re in the business of shipping and/or receiving freight it’s a no brainer that you may wind up searching for ways to save money. It can be difficult for shippers to find the lowest rate that will fit their shipping needs. In the long run, pretty much all organizations are searching for the most ideal approach to get their products from one location to the next at the lowest rate possible. Many shippers are overspending on LTL freight shipping by not fully understanding how transportation impacts LTL freight costs. In business saving time is of the same importance as saving money. If the proper steps are not taken, freight shipping can be just as time consuming as it is expensive. Here are tips to consider the next time you have an LTL shipment:

Understand what factors go into shipping rates.

  • If you do not understand what factors go into shipping rates, as a business owner, you may waste a lot of time trying to sift through quotes.
  • When you understand the shipping costs everything will be much more time efficient and your shipping department will be able to secure competitive rates. The shipping origin and destination, commodity details, special services, desired method of shipping and service level preference are all important parts in determining shipping rates.

Know exactly what your shipment is

  • It is crucial to be exact when weighing and calculating the size of a shipment. Freight shippers should NEVER use an estimate for the weight or size of their items because if they are wrong, carriers will almost always charge additional fees.

Choose the correct freight class

  • Find out the exact and correct NMFC item number and description for your item and make sure it is noted on your bill of lading. 
  • Understanding freight classifications is important to saving money on LTL shipments. Freight classifications are based mainly on density, liability, stowability, and handling.  There are 18 total standard classes, which are numerical codes between 50 and 500. Getting the right one is key or you may end up with a reclass.

Consider Accessorial and Other Fees

  • These are extra fees for services performed beyond simply shipping from one point to another. Examples include inside pick-up or delivery, lift gate service, residential delivery, waiting time, storage, packing and fuel surcharges.
  • The freight rate shouldn’t be your only concern as you sift through your LTL freight estimates. Pay mind to any additional fees and accessorial charges that will be added once the shipment is complete.

Consolidate orders

  • If it is possible, try to combine small LTL shipments into one larger shipment. Multiple small shipments will be going to the same location daily.  If these shipments are consolidated into one, rates will decrease and you will save money.
  • Packaging items together can significantly cut down on shipping and packaging costs. Consolidating your shipment can cut weight, density, and a chance of damage or loss. It’s much easier to keep track of one piece of freight than it is to keep track of five or ten.

Use proper packaging

  • It is important to correctly package your shipments to avoid damages. Attaching freight to the pallet by using shrink-wrap or other protective wraps can help you avoid damages to your shipments.
  • Make note of fragile shipments by adding labels or signs that are easily visible on the packaging.
  • Maximizing your pallet space and increasing the density of your shipment is a great way to save on LTL shipping.

Prepare the warehouse

  • Overall shipping time may be affected by whether or not the warehouse is properly prepared to send or receive shipments.
  • Make sure your freight is ready to go, or else you might end up with a dry run fee, and that can cost you cash.
  • Make sure that all trucks can move to and from where they need to be easily and that all shipping docks are available.

Choose the best shipping mode    

  • If you’re new to shipping you may need to spend some time learning about the various shipping methods and options that are available and which is the best option for your business. It’s hard to avoid spending time on research up front, but in the long run you will be saving yourself days of work.

Get a Quote from Freight Retriever  

  • You can use our instant LTL rate shopping tool to find rates from multiple carriers and compare them to find which will suit your needs the best. Not all volume quotes are created equal, start your quote search early and try to find your best deal.


Don’t allow freight shipping to take time or money from your business. Follow these steps to help your business grow and be more efficient when shipping freight and less than truckload today!  

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