The Benefits Of Employing Packing Services

Methods of Freight Shipping via Ground

Most freight is transported via ground freight. The three most common ground freight shipping methods are:

  1. Truckload (TL)
    Also referred to as Full Truckload, TL shipping is used when the load is too large for LTL shipping, when the shipment is too unwieldy to share space with other cargo or when a specialty vehicle such as a flatbed or drop deck truck is required.

    TL shipping is very straightforward and much less complicated than LTL shipping. Since truckloads do not accommodate more than one shipper’s cargo, the load can frequently be picked up by the truck that will immediately deliver it to its destination.
  2. Less-than-Truckload (LTL)
    As the name suggests, LTL shipping is for freight shipments that do not require an entire truck. Instead of one shipper using an entire truck, multiple shipper’s share the same truck, thereby reducing costs for all of them. The biggest benefit of LTL shipping is price. LTL shipping is the most popular mode of shipping in the United States.

    There are several processes involved with LTL shipping. Freight gets picked up from each shipper’s location by local trucks that deliver these shipments to a terminal or hub. From there, all freight is placed on a truck that carries it for the long haul to the destination terminal. At the destination terminal, the shipments are unloaded, reorganized, loaded onto local delivery trucks and sent out to the destination location.
  3. Partial Truckload
    Partial truckload could be considered a hybrid between LTL and TL shipping. It’s used for six to 18 pallets of freight with a weight range of 8,000-27,000 pounds. Advantages to using partial truckload can include faster delivery and a lower price.

    The downside to partial truckload service is there is very limited capacity for it. Ask your freight agent whether it’s better for your load to ship as a partial truckload or as two LTL shipments.
  4. Intermodal Rail Freight
    Intermodal railway freight shipping involves the combination of freight shipping by rail and truck. Almost always, a rail shipment will need the help of a truck. The truck takes the freight from the rail hub to its final destination.

What can I ship using PTL?

PTL stands for partial truckload. It can be considered an option under very specific circumstances. For instance, if a shipper needs significant space inside the truck but without filling it entirely, PTL becomes a suitable option.

Finding a PTL carrier is ideal if you require more volume than you would normally need for LTL shipping but still not enough for a full truckload. PTL freight companies use the same truck for the pick-up and the delivery of the shipment, thus making the transportation faster than LTL shipping.

Advantages

  • Shipments are being picked-up and delivered by the same truck
  • No need to declare the class of your shipment

Disadvantages

  • Not all shipping companies offer partial truckload services

Best use

  • Suitable for small-medium businesses

When To Use a Combination of LTL and TL Shipping

There are other situations where you can actually blend an LTL shipment into TL.

Typically, your decision on whether to use LTL or TL will be based on an individual shipment. For example, if you have a few different pallets each going to different destinations, LTL will be your best option. But advancements in freight consolidation are now making it possible to somewhat mold LTL into TL for non-recurring, long-haul shipments.

Sometimes, it may be best for a company to order a full truck to ship a lot of product to a single destination. Long-term TL shipping may not make sense if the destinations of delivery will evolve, which would make shipping more expensive. In these instances, the shipper can use freight consolidation through TL shipping to get their products sent along the same route to the various distribution centers along the way.

Once things reach this point, you can typically transition from consolidated TL to LTL shipping, which allows shippers to operate in local markets. You will have to do your homework here to make sure you’re doing what makes sense for your budget and needs, but as the needs of your company change, it may be a good option for added flexibility. This is another reason that using third-party logistics can save you some real headache when it comes to choosing your shipping method.

Breaking down common Shipping Types

To understand the differences between LTL and PTL shipping, it’s paramount that we outline the three main types of shipping in so that you understand the terminology, and why a certain type is typically chosen.

TL

Full truckload shipping is a type of freighting which means a single truck is filled with a single company’s shipment. Not only the costliest type of shipping, but it’s typically the most efficient. The reason is that the transit time is less, and the shipment isn’t unloaded before its destination, being that there are no other unloading stops. This type of shipping is typically utilized by established companies that require a hefty amount of shipping. They tend to use TL if they’re shipping 20,000 pounds or more and don’t mind paying the extra cost for faster delivery time.

LTL

Geared towards smaller-medium sized business, less than truckload shipping is a type of freighting that fills a truck with multiple shipments. The weight is usually somewhere from 0 to 10,000 pounds per shipment and LTL isn’t keen to onboarding cargo with pour dimensional weight (when the package is voluminous but the contents themselves on the lighter side). By filling a truck with different shipments all heading to the same destination, carriers are able to save shippers money by offering a reduced price. The downside is that—taking into account all the stops, onboarding, and unloading—the contents have a higher propensity for damage because they pass through multiple hands. Then, the multiple stops are a time drain, and they tend to increase the total transit time.
Still, LTL shipping is commonly the go-to for smaller-medium sized businesses because it’s cost-efficient, flexible, and offered by most freight carriers.

PTL

Partial truckload shipping is a different type of freight altogether, being something of a hybrid between LTL and TL. It’s only considered an option if a shipper needs a truck for 8,000 to 27,000 pounds, or somewhere between 5-22 pallets. This very specific prerequisite is why it’s not a common type of shipping. However, PTL is usually a straight shot, meaning the same truck which picks up a shipment is the same one that’s going to deliver it. This means that with PTL shipping the cargo has less of a propensity for damage. Additionally, being that it’s one truck and there aren’t any connections, the transit time is typically smaller.

The key differences between parcel and LTL.

Parcel shipping and LTL shipping have some clear differences. 

Here’s a look at some of the major differences between these shipping types:

1. Damage risk and loss prevention

Each option comes with risks and benefits. With parcel shipping, the chance that a package will become lost or damaged is higher than with LTL. An LTL shipment is often secured by pallets and placed in a space that is designed to prevent damage to the freight. 

Parcel shipments are smaller, therefore able to be packed in higher volumes. While this is a nice advantage, it could absolutely lead to a greater risk of loss or damage.

2. Ease of tracking and checkpoints

Another key difference between parcel shipping and LTL shipping is ease of tracking. Parcel packages go through several different checkpoints, so parcel carriers are updated with shipment location more frequently than LTL shipments. On the other hand, fewer checkpoints allow for greater security with LTL. 

LTL also allows for zone skipping, the process of bypassing a parcel carrier’s zones, letting the shipper evade charges from crossing multiple zones in a single trip. Essentially, the fewer checkpoints and transfers a shipment has to go through, the safer that shipment will be. 

3. Cost advantage

The cost advantage of parcel shipping comes from the higher volume it offers. Since LTL packages are larger, they take up more space and result in a slightly higher price.

This is not always an advantage of parcel shipping. Parcel carriers have their own set of additional charges. Things like correcting an address to a Saturday delivery could cost you extra with parcel shipping, whereas LTL carriers could hit you with charges for not having a loading dock.

When Local Moving Companies Make Sense

Why is Moving House So Stressful?

If you have a preconceived idea from the majority of negative articles that moving house is going to be stressful, then it will. There will inevitably be a psychological effect of moving house as you’re uprooting your life, leaving behind important relationships and going through a physically strenuous process. However, if you’re worried, then first identify the areas of the process that have the potential to bring on anxiety.

Reasons you might feel stressed when moving:

  • Change of routine
  • Thought of packing
  • Fear of the unknown
  • Leaving friends and family
  • Feeling unprepared
  • Physical labour 

Research has previously shown that it can affect not only adults but also children too. It was discovered that children showed “poorer mental health in periods following a residential move” than those who were stable and not constantly moving house. Clearly, moving house can have a huge impact on families and people’s mental health, proving that it is a stressful event to go through. 

So, what can we do to prevent any moving house stress? With planning, sensible choices and our 9 top tips then you should be able to stay on top of the moving stress.

Tips for Minimizing the Stress and Cost of Your Move

Stress and costs; wouldn’t it be great if we could limit them both? Of course it would!  Moving is commonly associated with being a costly and stressful event, even though it doesn’t have to be. In the following post, we will outline three tips for reducing your stress and your moving cost and keeping them to a minimum.

Answer Two Important Questions

“Can my moving company get in and out?” and “will my furniture and appliances fit?” Whether you’re moving from one permanent residence to another – and especially if you’ll be occupying temporary housing for a few months such as an apartment or condo – there are two things you want to keep in mind:

Vehicular Access

Take the area in the immediate vicinity of your new residence into consideration; is there room enough for a 53-foot moving van to maneuver safely? If not, the driver will have to park the moving van as close to the residence as he or she can get and rent a smaller truck and shuttle your goods to your residence. Finding this out at the last moment is a nasty surprise that can cause you more than a little stress. Access can also be a problem if you’re moving into a permanent home. Gated communities are a prime example of a situation where a shuttle needs to be used.  Granted these environments shouldn’t deter you from purchasing the home you want, but knowing the circumstances in advance will mean less stress and better enable you to budget for the added moving expense.

Furniture and Appliances

From time to time the furniture and appliances that fit so perfectly in your old home can be tricky to fit into your new residence. Stevens personnel see it more frequently than we would like to admit. For example, that big armoire is too big to fit in the upstairs bedroom. If you are bound and determined to make it fit, the only way is to hoist it up over a balcony and through a larger entryway offered by a sliding door at significant added expense. Exercise equipment can also cause problems for moving crews. In many cases this equipment needs to be taken apart before it can eve moved. It’s just one more headache you don’t need.

Make specific plans with your old friends to see them in the future.

It’s always difficult to say goodbye. And when people move, they usually have very good intentions of staying in touch and visiting. But let’s face it — sometimes life gets in the way and you don’t get around to making those plans. So put the get-togethers and reunions on your calendar before you leave. That way, you’re more likely to follow through.

Introduce yourself to your new neighbors.

Even if this is out of your comfort zone, it is always helpful to know your neighbors. Whether you need to borrow a cup of sugar, have someone keep an eye on the house when you’re traveling, or simply to make new friends, it is definitely worth it to go out of your way to get to know the people who live near you.

Establish new routines.

Let’s face it — everything has probably changed for you. And that includes your routines. Maybe your route to work is a lot longer, so now you can’t get up early to do your morning workout. Try to figure out ways that you can still do the things you love, but with different routines.

Find as many free boxes as possible before moving

Moving boxes aren’t cheap! Before you start packing, seek out free moving supplies from various stores, online marketplaces, community groups and friends. Not only is the process of finding free boxes easy, but it’s also a surefire way to save hundreds of dollars on moving expenses. You can find potential moving boxes on Craigslist, Freecycle, U-Haul Box Exchange, Nextdoor.com and local Facebook groups. If you’re looking to take the search offline, check out local liquor stores, big box chains, offices, grocery stores, recycling drop-off points, and schools. Of course, you can always ask friends, family and neighbors for any extra moving boxes they may have lying around.

Choose a cheaper date and time to move

One of the easiest ways to save money during a move is to simply choose the right moving date. When hiring a professional moving company, the date and time of your move can make all the difference when it comes to the ease of your relocation and the size of your bank account. First, avoid moving during the “peak moving season” from May to August. Instead, opt for a mid-week, mid-month moving date between the months of September and April. Demand is typically lowest during the mid-week and mid-month days. Therefore, your costs will likely be lower as well. Of course, many of us don’t have the option to move during the most ideal time of the year. If this is the case for you (and you’re looking to save money), I suggest considering a DIY move instead.

Pack everything yourself

While hiring professional packers can certainly speed up the moving process, it can also weigh it down in terms of cost. Hiring professional packers can get expensive – costing upwards of several hundred dollars. Of course, packing rates vary from moving company to moving company. So make sure to ask how much they charge per hour per mover and how long those packing services typically take.

Hire professional movers.

No one really likes packing and lugging around furniture. So if your budget allows for it, hire a dependable moving company like Allied. When I have moved, I have done it both ways — done it myself (along with friends and family members who helped out), and I have hired movers. Trust me, having movers do all the work took away so much of my stress, and it was definitely worth it.

Questions to ask your movers before hiring them

When moving locally or long distance, you are pursuing not only a reasonable price but also a good quality of services. In order to get a good moving service and a good price, you might need to negotiate with a moving company. The rule of thumb – do not sacrifice quality for low-cost services when choosing a moving company. Here are some questions you’ll need to ask your movers before hiring them:

  • What are the services you can get?
  • How much will the move cost?
  • How much time will your moving take?
  • Will you get insurance for all of your belongings?
  • Do you pay extra for the packing supplies?
  • What does a full-moving service imply?
  • Are there any additional fees you should count on?

By asking all of these questions to a moving crew, you will make sure to prepare for any inconveniences. In case your movers don’t seem to speak openly about their services, you might want to avoid them and look for others.

Partial Truck Loading Services Are A Great Shipping Choice For Smaller Companies

Tips for Choosing the best Load Board

As an owner-operator, you know you need to find loads to haul. Your business is based on running as many loaded miles as you can in order to maximize your profits and mileage. One great way to find loads is through online freight matching services, also known as load boards. These websites can save you a lot of time hunting down work, so you can spend your time earning money.

Low cost

Make sure you find a freight matching service that fits within your budget. A good load board will pay for itself after a few loads.

User-friendly interface

Is the load board user-friendly? Look for an intuitive interface, so you don’t waste time searching for loads, posting your truck or using other value-added features.

Free trial

Look for a load board that offers a free trial, so you can test it to see if it suits your needs. Be weary of a load board that does not offer a free trial.

Mobile apps

When you’re on the go, you need a freight match service that offers the same access on your phone or tablet as what you can see on your computer.

Ways to Find the Loads that are Right for You and Your Trucking Business

Anyone can go to a load board and find a load, but how do you find the loads that are right for you and your trucking business? And what actions can you take so that you aren’t always worried about finding the next load?

Decide who you want to work with.

Before you do anything, figure out who you want to be in business with. Figuring out what kind of customers you want to focus on will help you find them. It also means you can better narrow in on your business goals.

Use a good load board.

A good load board is the best tool you can have at your disposal. Use one that provides enough flexibility to support your unique business needs. Make sure it has plenty of volume so you have the freedom to work with who you want, when you want, with the ability to move what you want. (Truckstop.com’s Load Board has hundreds of thousands of loads to choose from!) It should offer the features you need to make the right decisions for your business. Look for options like sorting by rate, origin, and broker rating which will help you find the loads that work best for you. The best load boards will offer tons of features like the ability to create multiple stops so you can plan ahead or the ability to book loads instantly (no negotiations required), as well as heat maps so you know where the best-paying loads are.

Focus on broker relationships.

It might be hard to hear it, but focusing on having good relationships with brokers can help your wallet later down the road. If it’s a lane you like to run because it gets you close to home or pays well, make sure the broker knows that, then provide the best service you can so they want to go to you in the future. If you’re reliable, provide excellent customer service, and they know you’re interested, they will call you directly instead of posting a load to the board, and that saves both of you time and resources. Brokers also have the ability to add you to their preferred carrier list on Truckstop.com, offering you access to exclusive Book It Now loads that save you time and get you paid quickly.

Search for more than one type of trailer.

Including more than one trailer type will produce better search results. If you focus too closely on one kind of trailer, you may miss loads that can go on various types of trailers. If you have a reefer, you can also run it as a dry van. If you’re only looking for full truckloads, you’re missing less-than-load (LTL) options. This obviously doesn’t work for everything (you can’t haul ice cream on a flatbed), but consider giving it a try when you’re in a pinch. You rely on your instincts every day, so go into situations knowing there is always a way to make it work for you.

Moving Loading Services

Loading seems simple, but it’s essential to having a good moving experience. For starters, tightly loading the truck helps ensure less shifting during transit, which means fewer scratches or dings. Proper loading also ensures that you’ll only need to use as much of the truck as estimated.

How it works

If you pack your own stuff, you want to have everything ready to go when the truck arives so you have plenty of time. With a professional move, a two to five man crew will load your things on moving day depending on the size of your residence and the amount of items you are moving.

Pricing

Pricing depends on the type and amount of stuff that needs to be loaded.

How to Choose the Right Crane and Reduce Risk When Buying a Used One

With advancements in technology, lifting cranes have become a lot more common. Almost all construction and demolition projects, as well as transport or shipping of heavy materials, require powerful lifting cranes. However, the success of your project depends on choosing the right one. Doing so will also prevent potential accidents and damages, saving your time, money, and improving your reputation as a safe workplace

Check the Load Weight to Be Lifted.

One of the first things you need to consider is the weight of the load to be lifted or moved using the crane. Naturally, you need a crane with a suitable lifting capacity to move the load. If you use a high-capacity crane for a small load, you will most likely end up wasting time, labor, and money. On the other hand, a low-capacity crane can lead to fatal accidents and cause damage to the load.

Know the Lift Height.

The height of the lifting load is as critical as the load capacity of the crane. The length of the crane’s boom will depend on how high the loading material needs to go. If the construction is vertical, you will need a lift with a longer boom length

Find the Moving Distance (Horizontal).

Just like the vertical distance, the crane also will need to travel some horizontal distance to pick up the load. If you need the crane to transport the equipment from one spot to the other, you will need to get a mobile crane with wheels. If there is a fixed path of movement, you can use a crane with rails.

Evaluate the On-Site Terrain.

All types of cranes require a support structure to hold them firmly to the ground. It is the most crucial element that stabilizes the crane and the load. So you will need to choose a suitable crane depending on the terrain.

Choosing the Right Forklift for Your Business

Choosing the right forklift is important for your business. It affects everything from operation costs, productivity, employee morale and stock management.

Environment

Your business environment will influence the type of forklift, tyre selection and fuel type

Load Size / Capacity

It would be a big mistake to choose a forklift with a maximum lift capacity that is below your requirements

The type of load also matters as there are specific forklift attachments that can enhance a standard forklift and help you move the load more efficiently. There are many types of attachments available: appliance clamps, carton clamps, paper roll clamps, etc.

Fuel type

There are three types of fuel options – electric, gas or diesel