What’s the Difference Between LTL and FTL Shipping?

June 22, 2018 10:56 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

If you are involved with the shipping department for your company, either directly or indirectly, you’ve probably heard the terms “LTL shipping” and “FTL shipping” before. You probably also know that these acronyms stand for less than truckload (LTL) shipping and full truckload (FTL) shipping, but what exactly is the difference between the two, and which one should you use?

As a local trucking company that offers both FTL and LTL shipping in Houston, TX, we often find that local businesses are choosing inappropriate shipping options that aren’t efficient and are causing them to lose money. To help remedy that, we are going to cover the differences between LTL and FTL shipping so, regardless of who you choose to ship with, you can choose the best shipping option for your company.

Less than truckload (LTL) shipping

LTL shipping is a form of ground freight transportation in which shipments from multiple customers are combined on one truck. You can think of it as being similar to carpooling—everyone is chipping in only a portion of the cost for a full shipment, and they all get to share the ride.

Shipments that would be considered LTL are typically within the range of 100 to 10,000 pounds. How much you pay for your shipment will depend on where within that range your shipment falls and, of course, how far your shipment is going.

LTL shipping is ideal for small businesses that have smaller shipments. It helps save costs and you aren’t paying for space on a truck that you aren’t using. Keep in mind, however, that because LTL shipments usually require multiple stops and pickups, the delivery time for your shipment typically increases. If your shipment requires a speedy delivery, FTL shipping may be the better option for you.

Full truckload (FTL) shipping

FTL shipping, of course, means that a full truck will be used for transporting your shipment. However, this does not always mean that your shipment is large enough to take up a full truckload.

While FTL shipping is typically best for larger companies that ship large loads frequently and require a full truckload for their shipments, FTL shipping can be used for smaller shipments as well. If you want to ensure that your shipment reaches its destination quickly and is not bogged down by multiple pickups and drop-offs, FTL shipping is likely your best option. Another example would be high-risk shipments that require special care; these are often safest when shipped FTL as well.

In some cases, your business may require a combination of both FTL and LTL shipping. Best practice is to optimize your transportation while reducing costs, and Pro Delivery LLC can help you do just that. We offer both FTL and LTL shipping in Houston, TX, so we can best meet the unique needs of your business. For reliable shipping service from a trucking company you can trust, be sure to use the team at Pro Delivery LLC. For a free estimate, get in touch with us today!

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