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pallet shipping

How to Ship a Pallet

Learn essential palletized freight lingo, expert tips on how to ship a pallet, and factors that impact pallet shipping costs.

Why Use Pallets?


A pallet is a flat, portable platform, usually made of wood, with openings on two sides or all four for easy maneuverability by pallet jacks or forklifts. The standard pallet size is 48″ x 40″, and most freight shipping will require palletization.

  • Pallets are the perfect choice for an oversized item that won’t fit neatly inside a crate.
  • Not only will pallets consolidate your shipment, but they also simplify the act of loading and unloading.
  • Pallets also help carriers optimize the space they occupy in the trailer and the warehouse.


Pallet Shipping


Mastering how to ship a pallet is at the forefront of the shipping world. If you’re running a small business or a large corporation with products to import, pallets will be your best friends. That’s because pallets make it easier for you to send and can help support and protect your cargo when appropriately used. Shipping a pallet can help you improve efficiency, which means better productivity and profitability. But what exactly do you need to know about shipping a pallet? We’ll review best practices for pallet shipping, guide you through some terminology, and provide insider shipping tips.





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Why Choose FreightCenter for Pallet Shipping?

There are many reasons to choose FreightCenter for your pallet shipping needs:

  • Expertise: We have the expertise and experience necessary to ensure your shipment arrives safely and on time.
  • Convenience: We offer a range of shipping options and delivery methods to meet your specific needs.
  • Cost-Effective: We work with a network of carriers to provide you with the most cost-effective shipping options.
  • Customs Expertise: Our team of customs experts can help you navigate the complex customs process and ensure your shipment is cleared as quickly as possible.
  • Customer Service: Our dedicated customer service team is available 24/7 to answer any questions or concerns you may have about your shipment.
  • Technology: Our advanced shipping technology allows you to track your shipment in real time and receive updates throughout the shipping process.

A Quick Guide to Pallet Shipping Terms

It is in your best interest to understand the different pallet types and the jargon used to define them. Speaking the same language as seasoned pros means you can better understand what options you have when it comes to pallets and shipping options. Here are some cheat codes when it comes to pallets:

  • Skid – Another word used for a pallet. The terms skid and pallet are used interchangeably, but they are not the same. A skid has no bottom deck boards and takes up less space when stacked. 


  • Deck boards — Deck boards are 2 x 4 wooden slats that make up the flat top and bottom of the pallet. This is where the item will sit. Deck boards are either evenly spaced or close-boarded.


  • 2-way entry — Opening on 2 sides of the pallet for forklift or pallet jack access.

2 way entry pallet


  • 4-way entry — Opening on all 4 sides of the pallet. This can be a true 4-way entry (open on all 4 sides) or 2 open entries with an additional 2 clefts for forklift and pallet jack access. Four-way entry is the preferred pallet type.

4 way entry pallet

  • Stringer pallets — Named after the 2 x 4 or 3 x 4 wooden “stringers” that support the top and bottom deck boards. There are typically 3 or more stringers to a pallet.


  • Block pallets — True four-way entry pallets. Four to twelve blocks of solid wood are sandwiched between the top and bottom deck boards, with stringers laid flat between the deck boards and the wooden blocks. They do not always have bottom deck boards.

block pallet

Finely-tailored freight solutions

To create value for our customers by delivering customized shipping solutions that meet their unique needs and to fulfill shipping demands from simple to complex with expertise, guidance and ingenuity.

LTL Shipping

LTL shipping involves combining multiple small shipments from different customers onto one truck, allowing each customer to share the shipment cost. Trust the experts at FreightCenter to give you the best prices and the most comprehensive options for all your LTL freight shipping needs.

Full Truckload

Truckload shipping, also known as full truckload (FTL), is a transportation option for freight that requires the entire trucks trailer space. Unlike LTL shipping, FTL shipping is reserved for larger commodities that exceed LTL weight and size limits, typically weighing more than 20,000 pounds or having dimensions that exceed 12 feet in length, 8 feet in width, and 8 feet in height. We deliver optimized solutions for full or partial truckloads and competitive dry van, flatbed, and refrigerated freight pricing. We can cover your full truckload shipping needs.

Expedited Services

Nationwide Expedited Trucking services move your freight securely and rapidly. Your freight requires fast delivery; our freight shipping experts can get your shipment fast, whether in one large box or a full truckload. Expedited shipping is a transportation option that prioritizes the speed of delivery for freight that needs to be shipped quickly. This can be especially important for urgent situations, such as engine repairs or replacements for critical machinery.

Specialized Freight Shipping

Specialized is a transportation option for items that require specialized handling, equipment, or shipping conditions. Specialized shipments may include high-value engines, oversized engines, or engines that require temperature-controlled transportation. The most reliable Specialized Freight Services rates from all the top carriers are just a few steps away. From white glove service to international shipping, we've got you covered.

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Pallet Shipping FAQ


Q. Why use pallets?

A. Pallets will help consolidate your shipment and make it easier for a freight carrier to load and unload your freight.

Q. What is a standard-size pallet and its dimensions?

A. Standard pallets are wooden and typically come in a size of 48″x 40″.

Q. What are deck boards?

A. The 2 x 4 wooden slats at the top and bottom of a pallet making it a platform to place freight on top of.

Q. What are 2-way entry pallets?

A. They are pallets that a forklift or pallet jack can access on via two sides of the pallet.

Q. What are 4-way entry pallets?

A. They are pallets with openings on all four sides of a pallet for a forklift or pallet jack to easily access.

Q. What are stringer pallets?

A. Named after the wooden “stringer” that supports the tip and bottom deck boards in a pallet.

Q. What are block pallets?

A. These are true four-way pallets since there are four to twelve blocks between the top and bottom deck boards.

Q. How to ship a pallet?

A. Utilize the correct supplies when shipping a pallet. Banding, stretch wrapping, and using load protectors/edge boards will keep your goods safe.

Q. Pallet shipping tips

A. Avoid any overhanging freight, as it will damage your freight and other freight around it. Knowing the capacity of your pallet and using four-way entry pallets are the easiest for freight carriers to handle is important.

Q. What is a skid?

A. A pallet that has no bottom deck boards and is a less expensive version of a pallet.






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