Over the years, as Over The Road (OTR) shipments have increased in popularity, intermodal shipping has been tagged, somewhat unfairly, as the lesser choice for LTL shipments. However, in the face of driver shortages, busy seasons and increased trucking rates, shippers are recognizing the inherent benefits to intermodal shipping that have stood the test of time. As a business logistics manager, it’s important not to write off certain shipping methods based solely on outdated reputations. While it’s tempting to find your routines and stick to them, the cost and time benefits gained from branching out can be well worth the effort.
At FreightorGator, our main goal is to make your shipping processes as easy and painless as possible. For that reason, we’ve listed out the benefits of intermodal transportation for your LTL shipments. If your shipment is ready to go and you’re in need of carrier rates, don’t hesitate to head to our homepage now for an instant quote. Otherwise, read on to learn more about the benefits of intermodal transportation options.
Why Add Intermodal Shipping to your Logistics Strategy?
- Cost. Intermodal transportation tends to be extremely stable and predictable when it comes to shipping costs, particularly when it comes to rail. Rushed shipments, cost for long-haul drivers, and busier seasons for trucking all lead to higher, inconsistent rates. Intermodal is like the slow and steady turtle when it comes to rates. If you’re not rushed for time and your shipment is going 700 miles or more, it could be effective to compare both straight truck and intermodal options.
- Energy Efficiency. According to statistics comparing trucks and rail, trains emit approximately 5.4 pounds of carbon per 100-ton miles, whereas trucks are closer to 19.8 pounds. Using train where possible can significantly reduce the carbon footprint of any company trying to adopt a greener approach to shipping. Also astounding is the finding that one intermodal freight train can take up to 280 trucks off the road, leading to less fuel consumption and carbon output.
- Reliability. At one point, rail was singled out as being unreliable, and many shippers had horror stories about overdue shipments. However, in the face of significant criticism, rail carriers got to work changing their infrastructure to keep up with client demands and now boast on-time numbers of up to 98% – similar to any efficient trucking company.
- Product Safety. As shipments are loaded into freight containers, intermodal companies have taken great care to figure out the best way to handle, block and brace shipments. Once shipments are loaded into the container, handling and processes from there become a cinch, hence the reason intermodal containers were created in the first place. Essentially, most of the risk involved takes place in the loading and unloading processes which remains the same whether regardless of which carrier type you choose.
Ready to Find an LTL Carrier for your Shipment?
Overall, whether you go with OTR trucking or intermodal transportation for your shipments, you’ll want to compare rates and find carriers you trust. Use our instant quote tool to get compared rates for tons of top carriers or click here to find out more information on how FreightorGator is innovating the LTL industry!