Freight is a term used to describe shipments that exceed a parcel’s maximum weight and size dimensions. In other words, if it's too heavy or too large for your carrier's standard services or too bulky for their sorting scanners, it will be handled differently. Here we explain what it means for your shipment, tell you more about different carrier services and share tips for keeping the costs low.
When you think of freight, your mind might turn to container loads of goods or a pallet containing one heavy or fragile item. However, freight doesn't always have to be unique or even that large. Ordinary shipments like books, clothes or toys can also be sent as freight. So how do you know if your shipment falls under this category?
When choosing to combine packages into a single shipment, keep in mind that freight services may not serve the same destinations as those for regular parcels. It may also take longer for your shipment to reach its destination.
Remember that even freight shipments will have maximum dimensions. After all, your cargo needs to fit on a plane, in a truck, or into a container. If your carrier operates its own fleet, it may be able to ship larger cargo than carriers using passenger planes. If you need to move an extremely large, fragile or unique item (such as specialist machinery, or items destined for a museum), it's a good idea to reach out to your carrier so they can help plan the big move.
There are three ways a large and heavy shipment can travel from sender to receiver. Here's how they work and the pros and cons of each:
Whether you are shipping museum pieces or consumer products, your carrier will have a range of solutions that make sending and receiving goods a breeze. These three services may be especially relevant when shipping freight:
Regardless of how large or unique your shipment is, it will need a commercial invoice with a detailed goods description, HS code and an air waybill. Check if your goods require any licenses and permits. Arranging these may take time, so don't leave it to the last moment.
Just like when you're shipping a parcel, costs may vary when shipping freight – depending on several factors. Here are four things to keep in mind if you want to keep your costs at bay.
Seasonal price fluctuation. All carriers see a fluctuation of prices throughout the year. While the fee will always depend on your carrier’s capacity and their expectations of the market, it's safe to say that shipping a pallet will cost you less in March than it will in November when the holiday season shipping frenzy starts.
Shipment density. Remember dimensional weight? Small but heavy shipments may cost less to ship than featherlight parcels of the same size.
Shipping requirements and documentation may vary between carriers. This website is designed to provide general information related to shipping. If you’re unsure of the shipping requirements that apply to you, check with your carrier.