Q: Is my shipment “freight”?
A: Freight is defined as any goods transported by truck, train, ship, or aircraft. While you may be picturing a stack of perfectly square boxes, freight can be all shapes and sizes. If your product is bulky, oversized, or oddly shaped… it still counts as freight.
Q: How should I package my goods?
A: As a shipper, the best precaution you can take against damages is proper packaging. Pallets are portable platforms that allow for ease of freight movement. When choosing a pallet, make sure it’s large enough to accommodate the shipment without overhang, and sturdy enough to support the goods. Boxes should be full with no air, as air could result in crushed or damaged products. Use packing materials like peanuts or bubble wrap to prevent this.
For greatest stacking strength, align your boxes in columns, corner to corner. Heavier boxes on the bottom, lighter at the top. Use flat pieces of cardboard every couple rows to solidify loose boxes, and cardboard corner boards and edge protectors. Do not pyramid the boxes. Try to keep the top layer as flat as possible to prevent damage from other freight that may get stacked on top of it. Use strapping to secure your boxes to the pallet and then stretch wrap the entire shipment (3-5 revolutions) to prevent pieces from getting separated.
If you don’t plan on palletizing your shipment, use corrugated boxes or crates, and protect the contents with at least 2 inches of cushioning material like corrugated fibreboard, styrofoam sheets or packing blankets.
Whether you’re shipping palletized or not, the experts at Radius recommend using high quality packaging materials. If you’re a first time shipper you may be hesitant to spend a lot of money on quality boxes, pallets, shrink wrap and tape… but we can assure you the peace of mind and reduced damages are well worth it.
For a better visual aid, check out Freightera’s picture-guide to palletizing freight, HERE.
Q: What is freight class based on?
A: The NMFTA defines a class as a way “to establish a commodity’s transportability.” They’ve created a standard freight classification system that works for all types of commodities. There are 18 classes between 50 and 500 based on four characteristics: density, freight stowability, ease of handling, and liability. This all may sound complicated, but the experts at Radius are happy to make your experience as easy as possible! Contact our Rates Team today.
Q: How should I label my goods?
A: Make sure each individual piece of your shipment has a label with complete address information for the shipper as well as the consignee. The shipper and consignee information must match the information on the BOL.
Q: Is transit time guaranteed?
A: While shipping services are very reliable, transit times are not 100% guaranteed as weather, traffic, and mechanical issues can be unpredictable. The experts at Radius advise scheduling your shipments as soon as possible to ensure the quickest delivery. Keep in mind that the pick up day is not included in the calculation of transit time.
Whether you’re brand new to the game, or have been shipping for many years and just needed a refresher, we hope this guide serves as a useful resource. Looking to familiarize yourself with some common lingo? Check out our Glossary of Freight Terms.
Contact Radius today to see how we can help find the most efficient solutions for all your transportation needs!