Have you noticed more and more ‘freight consolidators’ showing up on your Global Source Logistics rate screen when you’ve booked a shipment lately? A freight consolidator specializes in collecting freight in a small service area, using a central terminal. Once they’ve collected enough freight for a full truckload, they will line-haul it to the destination terminal that will then service that local area. Consolidators can offer lower rates than other LTL carriers, due to the combination of servicing a smaller origin area and then ensuring a full truckload to the delivery terminal. The downside is they don’t cover every zip code like a regular LTL carrier would.
Another advantage of using consolidators is they tend to have fewer damage claims due to fewer break-bulk points along the way. The fewer times your freight is handled, the fewer chances it has for damage. While the cost savings can be great using a consolidator, it may add extra transit days onto the time in transit because of the time it can take to fill a trailer going to a particular destination.
If cost is more important than transit time, consider using a consolidator the next time it appears on your rate screen. However, if time is a factor, you may want to look at a regular LTL carrier.
Due to the impact of Hurricane Irene, transit times may be affected for locations on the East Coast. Feel free to contact us for the latest news on your particular shipment.