6 Tips and Tricks On How to Get the Best from Your Courier Service

Couriers can be expensive, especially if you are sending something overseas or if you have a large/heavy package. Sending merchandise and other documents regularly can add up to considerable costs for your business.

At FreightCom we believe in giving our customers value for their money. So, here is a handy guide on how you can manage you courier costs without breaking the bank:

1. Be clever about your packing

You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference you can make by packing in the right manner. This is because weight and dimensions have a major bearing on the cost. Keep your parcel as small as possible. Get the right sized box or packet when packing up merchandise. Avoid excessive padding unless it is delicate and the padding cannot be avoided.

Similarly, weight is also an important criteria. Since you cannot compromise on the weight of the merchandise, be clever with your packing. Use lightweight packing options, like bubblewrap. Instead of plastic cartons, use sturdy cardboard. It’s not just lighter, it can actually withstand more damage than plastic. If you use courier services regularly, buy your packing material in bulk. You can get discounts from wholesalers.

2. Give accurate measurements 

Courier services manage their shipments on the basis of the dimensions and weight of the packages. So, be specific in your measurements when placing an order. While this does not apply for small and light packages, large packages should be measured carefully. It could be worthwhile to buy a weighing scale if you use a courier service frequently.

3. Go for pickup services

When calculating courier cost, you have to also factor in cost of taking the package to the courier service. This is why pick-up services make more sense. This is a door-to-door delivery where the package is picked up from home and delivered to the specified address.

4. Get full coverage

Understand that accidents can happen even with the most careful courier service. Courier services usually offer some coverage for lost or damaged items, but this would be capped at a certain limit. For instance, Freightcom carriers cover up to $100 for any damaged or lost items. So, if you are transporting valuable merchandise, it is recommended to insure your package.

5. Time it right

If you are planning a pick-up, try to schedule it in the most efficient manner possible. Every courier service has a cut-off time for pick-ups. Any order after this time may get picked-up, but there would be on guarantees on the same. Orders after the cut-off time are usually picked up the next day. If you need urgent pick-up services after the cut-off time, contact your courier service to see if such facilities are offered.

6. Look for additional costs

Even if you have a proper cost tab, look for any additional charges that may apply. Details like taxes or pick-up services can add to the overall costs. This is especially applicable when you are looking for international shipments. Similarly, expressed deliveries are bound to cost more.

The Perfect Combination for Shipping

Global logistics services & supply chain management

Transporation and Technology

The logistics industry is going through a time of rapid and exceptional transformation. The future of logistics is paved by innovation and technology. When fully leveraged in the marketplace it empowers companies to compete and thrive in today’s new world of business, opening endless new possibilities. Many companies within the transportation industry are beginning to adapt and embrace this change by updating the way they currently operate. Freightcom has revolutionized the LTL and small Parcel booking process, instead of calling multiple carriers, waiting to hear back with quotes, rate compare etc.  You can now act as your own broker all from our cloud-based platform that requires no software, just a computer with an internet connection.

Freightcom has taken the supply chain model and with the use of technology has gone through and automated the entire shipping process!

How does it work?                

Freightcom’s network extends its reach using agreements with carriers and courier companies to offer access to a wide array of services, lanes, and volume discounted rates to customers. With the flexibility to connect and collaborate in unique ways, companies can effectively leverage Freightcom’s connections to their benefit allowing them to ship their products domestically, cross-border and internationally at a discounted price!

Think of this as the Expedia for freight!  

Through the Freightcom website (www.freightcom.com) you can instantly quote shipments, by simply entering in the pick-up and destination postal code (or zip code), the dimensions, weight and additional services your shipment will need. Instantly you will get live quotes you can rate compare with a variety of carriers, services and transit times.

Just like quoting, booking shipments are just as easy! Simply enter the pick-up and destination complete address, dimensions, weight and the additional services you would need. After selecting the carrier and rate you would like to go ahead with, you can submit your order. That’s it! The carrier will come to your location, pick-up the shipment and you are now good to go!

From the Freightcom website, you are also able to track all of your shipments with daily updates. Shipping pallets and packages just became a quick and painless process!

What’s the catch?

There are none! Creating an account with Freightcom is absolutely free! It is as easy as signing up for an email address.  There are no hidden fees, contracts or volume commitments – you only pay when you ship!

So what are you waiting for? Give us a call toll-free at 1-877-335-8740 ext 147 to learn more or go to www.freightcom.com to create a free account today! Saving time and money on your next shipment is only a click away!

2017 Year- End Holiday Schedule!

Freightcom Santa

holiday schedule 2017

How to tackle the holiday season like a pro?

Simple! Plan, prepare and most importantly… know your deadlines!

We made a list (and checked it twice) with all of Freightcom’s courier partners for their closures and deadlines this holiday season.

Please be advised that due to the significant increase in shipment volumes, our courier
partners have temporarily suspended their guaranteed service delivery until further notice. If a shipment is picked up the day before the holiday, it may not leave the origin terminal until after the holiday weekend. We strongly recommend pick-ups to be entered 1-2 days in advance of holiday closures.

Freightcom and all carriers will be closed Monday, December 25th, and Monday, January 1st, 2018. All Canadian carriers will also be closed on Tuesday, December 26th, however, Freightcom will be open with limited operations. Please note, all carriers will be running with limited operations on Friday, December 22nd and Friday, December 29th. Keep in mind delays may occur during this time.

Please see below to view each courier company’s holiday shipping schedules and deadlines:

FedEx

UPS

Purolator

Canpar

Dicom

DHL

On behalf of the entire Freightcom Team, we wish you a Happy Holiday Season!

 

Need a Lift?

Delivery truck

To liftgate or not to liftgate, that is the question.

You’ve seen the option but may or may not have chosen it. Or – your customer may have requested it upon delivery and you only found out once you were invoiced. It’s important to understand what it is and why it’s important for your shipments.

What is a liftgate?

A liftgate (or tailgate) is a hydraulic lift attached to the rear of the truck that allows you to load and unload pallets with only a handpump truck.

When is a liftgate required?

It’s a crucial part of a pick up or delivery when either (or both) parties do not have loading docks or forklifts capable of loading or unloading the back of the trailer.

How does a liftgate work?

Liftgate’s use a hydraulic system that powers them up and down. When required, they will lower to the ground and provide you the ability to push the pallet onto the platform with a handpump which either you or the driver supplies. Once loaded, the driver lifts the gate so it’s parallel to the back of the truck, which will allow him to then load the skid inside the trailer.

Are there limitations to the liftgate?

Absolutely. You’ll need to understand that liftgates are designed to work with your typical standard size pallets. The gate has a maximum width as well as height and weight limitation. Let me explain;

  • Depending on the style of truck picking up or dropping off, it may come equipped with roller doors or barn doors. Where barn doors swing open and roller will turn inside the truck. If it’s a roller-style, it’s going to limit the height of the skid fitting inside through the door. While the height maximum doesn’t necessarily mean much with a liftgate, it’s still important to know as a roller door may be a more common truck dispatched.
  • It’s typical for the liftgate not to be equal to the maximum width of the trailer. It probably won’t be too important as many skids won’t exceed 50” but it’s still important to consider.
  • Being mindful of the skid length is very important. If your skid is longer than the platform for the gate, you’ll end up with the skid’s back end lifting in the air once the gate is lowered. Common sense will probably let you know that it’s not going to work without potential for damage if the driver even allows it to happen
  • The weight of your pallet(s) is something you must also be mindful of. While some lifts may allow 3500lbs, the most you may be looking at is 2000lbs to be safe.

truck

So there you have it. If ever in doubt between who will dispatch what truck or what the maximum length or weight might be, especially when utilizing Freightcom’s system when we offer such a wide variety of options, reaching out to our experts to get the answer before shipping is extremely important. Nobody expects you to memorize each carrier’s limits, and that’s why we have a team that handles these things exclusively.

No account with Freightcom? What are you waiting for? Sign up today free, and browse our selection of carriers and service offerings.

Take The Fear Out Of Shipping Pallets!

Halloween scene with truck

Don’t let the fear of freight shipping rates drive you away from expanding your business. Many small/ medium size business owners often dream of taking their business to newer heights, but getting it there is always the issue…an expensive one as well! What if I told you there was an automated process for handling your shipments. You heard right! You can have less stress when you ship Less- Than-Truckload (LTL) freight shipping! Yes, that’s a thing… with Freightcom!

But what is LTL shipping you may ask? Let’s go over some of the basics!

Less than truckload, LTL Freight these are all terms used to describe palletized or large parcel freight shipments that do not require the full freight carrier’s truck. Typically this type of shipment ranges anywhere from 1-6 pallets, crates or oversized parcels. LTL shipping is a great method for companies that do not ship high volume as they would not require a full or partial truck and a more cost effective shipping method then to ship with most courier companies.

How is LTL freight priced?

There a six key factors that determine the rates:iStock_000006399715XSmall-300x208

  • The total weight of your shipment
  • The dimensions of your shipment
  • The distance it is traveling
  • Additional Services
  • The service type
  • The freight class

Total weight

When shipping a pallet, crate, or a box it is very important that you input the correct information to avoid any additional charges. It is always better to round up the weight, for example if a shipment is 115.5 pounds then round up to at least 116 pounds. In the event to where you list the incorrect weight and it is much lower than what the carrier had weighed it to be then you will be charged an additional reweigh fee. So to avoid any extra charges it’s always better to round up and if the shipment is palletized then the total weight should also include the weight of the pallet as well.

Total Size

box_dimensions_1The total size of your shipment must include the length x width x height. Again, if your shipment is palletized, then it is important to include the pallet’s dimensions in the total size. If the dimensions provided are incorrect, this will result in additional charges based on the new dimensions. Just as the weight with the shipment, the correct dimensions are very crucial and an important fact to note is to always round up!

Distance

This one is pretty self-explanatory, but plays a key role when determining the rate of a shipment. It is important to have accurate Postal/zip codes from and to, to achieve an accurate rates.

Additional Services

Additional services also plays a significant role in determining the rate of a shipment as well as ensuring the execution for delivery is successful. For example, if you have a shipment going to or picking up from a residential area, needs a tailgate, or set an appointment delivery, these are all important factors to include when booking your shipment. It is better to list all of this information on the BOL when booking the shipment to avoid any further delays for delivery and additional charges later on.

Service Type

Standard Freight

This is the ground service/ transit time for the LTL freight. It is important to note that when getting a freight quote online with a standard shipping option the estimated time of arrival (ETA) is not guaranteed. This service is great for when you’re not in any rush for the shipment delivery and you’re not limited to any specific carrier- not to mention it is also a cost effective method.

Expedited/ Express Freightfast delivery

If you are looking for a shorter transit time then expedited delivery would be a great option! With this type of service, your shipment will reach its destination quicker than a standard delivery service.

Guaranteed Freight

This service type cost more, but if you need your shipment to be delivered to a certain destination on a specific day then guaranteed freight is the way to go. If time is also a crucial factor then you can even schedule an appointment delivery.

Freight Class

Now, things can get a bit complicated here- so let’s go down to the basics. Here are a couple of factors you need to know about freight classes:

  • There are a total of 18 classes numbered anywhere from freight class 50 to freight class 500
  • The freight cost depends on a freight class (in USA and trans-border shipments)
  • Freight class is determined by either the goods being shipped or by shipment weight and dimensions

Commodity based class

National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) are assigned to different types of goods. Based on the commodity of what you are shipping, the weight and the dimensions that is how you determine the NMFC code.  When shipping cross border to the U.S. or intra U.S. it is very important to have the correct freight class to avoid any re-class fees.

Density based classing

If you are shipping anywhere domestic Canada, then density based classing is the way to go. Unlike goods based classing, density based classing is just based on the dimensions and weight of the shipment.

How can Freightcom help?

We here at Freightcom are focused on providing businesses the best possible solution when it comes to shipping. Our goal is to help companies save time and money by automating the entire shipping process online and providing aggressive rates. On our shipping platform you can easily compare rates with top-tier carriers, book shipments in minutes, receive daily updates on your shipments and pay your invoices online as well! It’s the clear one- stop-shop for shipping LTL!

Let’s get started!

Just like the shipping process, creating an account with Freightcom is simple! Just go to www.freightcom.com and select “Create a Free Account”. Remember with Freightcom, there are no monthly fees, contracts, or volume commitments! You only pay when you ship! So don’t delay, start saving on shipping today!