white truck in ship port logistics

How to Select the Best Shipping Method

by Ann-Ghilianne Laguerre

With so many different ways to ship freight, how do you select the best shipping method for your freight? Well, look no further. Here at FreightCenter, we’ve simplified the search for the right shipping method for your cargo.

To help you make a better, more informed decision, we’ve created a short synopsis of the types of methods available.

Select the Best Shipping Method

Less than Truckload (LTL)

If your cargo is too big to be parcel (150 lbs. or more), but you don’t need an entire freight truck, LTL shipping is the way to go. It’s the most popular shipping method, and for a good reason; it’s the most economical way to transport freight.

You only pay for the space you need. And LTL carriers calculate rates off dimensional weight and load capacity. Streamlined stowing on shared truck space with other freight loads means lower risks of damage and more timely deliveries. Sharing is caring!

Truckload (TL)

Is your cargo oversized or pretty heavy? TL shipping is ideal for getting your oversized or overweight cargo (5,000-10,000 lbs.) from point A to point B. Shipments that are unpackaged or may require refrigeration, climate control, flatbeds, or other special accommodations are perfect for TL also.

Cargo stays in one trailer, so no need to deal with truck transfers or reloading of your shipment. That means a lower risk of damage and faster transit times.

Partial Truckload (PTL)

Partial Truckload is your best option when you have large cargo that is in between the average LTL shipment and a full truckload. These shipments are usually between 6-18 pallets and 8,000 lbs. or more. And the best part is freight class isn’t required.

Intermodal Rail Freight

Looking for the best-kept secret in freight? Intermodal shipping combines the use of rail and trucks for freight shipping. Trucks take the freight from the rail hub to the final destination. It is an often overlooked, underrated shipping method in the industry.

And, if your business is eco-minded, trains use less fuel. Meaning lower greenhouse gas emissions. Consolidate any size shipment all in one place on a flexible transit schedule.

Air Freight

Is your shipment time-sensitive? Then air freight may be right for you. This is the best way to move time-sensitive freight intercontinentally as air freight has the fastest transit times. With modern technology, it’s easier to track your cargo through highly reliable air freight carriers during transit.

Also, there is a lower chance that your cargo will get damaged. 

International Shipping


The world is a big place, and if you need to move cargo across international borders – well, this is it. There are a few ways to handle your international freight – Ocean or Air.

Ocean Freight 

The most efficient way to ship internationally is to have your goods transported in a cargo container by ocean freight liner. These are giant boats built to accommodate many containers. It doesn’t matter if you’re shipping an entire container to Italy or just a small portion of one to the United States.

Non-conforming loads are not a problem with ocean shipping. International ocean freight services are all-encompassing and cost-effective for any shipper. When looking to ship internationally with a relaxed shipping schedule, ocean freight is a great option.

Air Freight (International)

Just as air freight is the fastest intercontinental shipping mode, it is also the fastest international shipping mode. If your shipment is dense, meaning it has a small footprint that takes up minimum space but weighs more than 150 pounds, then air freight may be the best mode of transportation.

Air freight’s transit times are unmatched and even offer expedited, overnight, and specialty shipping options and accommodations.

Additional Freight Services


If your supply chain needs that extra boost, there are additional freight services out there to optimize your shipping game.

Expedited Freight

Expedited freight shipping is for an urgent shipment that must arrive by a certain date and time. Since expedited freight involves the handling of urgent or time-sensitive loads, there are usually no accessorials on this type of shipping.

Predominately used by supply chains to meet the needs of customers, expedited freight moves as a priority above all other shipments. Trucks shipping expedited freight rarely stop along the way.


If your shipment is delicate or has a high risk of damage, then a dedicated truck with air-ride suspension is the most preferred method of transportation, which provides a softer ride than a standard freight truck.

It’s also versatile on different types of terrain and helps with the overall well-being of the truck itself. Improved fuel economy and less wear and tear on the trailer make air-ride suspension a friend to trucking companies. 

Guaranteed Delivery Freight Services

When it comes to any type of shipment, you want to ensure you select the best shipping method. This helps keep costs low while ensuring your freight arrives to its destination with zero harm. If your cargo requires a specific date and time for delivery, then guaranteed delivery is your best option.

Your supply chain gets stronger with this service knowing it has the flexibility to meet customers’ demands, especially during the busy shipping seasons.

We hope this helps to explain what type of shipping method would work best for you. FreightCenter is always here to help answer any and all shipping questions. Give us a call today at 800.716.7608, or get started with your free online quote today.

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