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Understanding Truckload Capacity

Understanding Truckload Capacity

We’ve helped thousands of businesses and individuals all over the world get their goods from point A to point B faster and smarter.

Understanding Truckload Capacity. The current market is one of limited capacity – but what does that mean when it comes to full truckload? What are the effects that capacity, whether excess or limited, can have on your shipping strategy? Understanding truckload capacity is a key element in keeping your shipments moving smoothly and successfully. Let’s breakdown what it all means.

What Is Truckload Capacity?


Truckload capacity is the availability of drivers and equipment to transport your shipment. Capacity fluctuates rapidly at times, and these changes affect how much it costs to ship your goods. When truckload capacity is reduced, rates increase because drivers and equipment are limited. However, when truckload capacity increases and isn’t so tight, truckload rates decrease because more drivers and equipment are available. These changes in truckload capacity throughout the year can drastically impact how much it costs to ship your full truckload cargo and how many shipping options are available to you.

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What Affects Truckload Capacity?


When it comes to shipping, there are certain things that affect truckload capacity. For example, the logistics industry is facing a truck driver shortage. If there aren’t enough drivers to transport shipments, then capacity will tighten, and costs will increase for both shippers and carriers. Here are some common things that affect truckload capacity:

– Truckload Seasons—Yes, seasons, you read that right. Certain truckload shipping seasons cause truckload capacity to fluctuate. Produce shipping season and peak shipping season are often the busiest for full truckload shippers and carriers. Generally, produce shipping season occurs in the spring and summer, and peak shipping season happens in the late summer and fall. During these truckload seasons, demand for trucks increases, but the supply of available trucks is limited.

– Regional Capacity—Did you know that some areas of the U.S. are considered danger zones for truckers? Certain areas of the country aren’t as appealing to truckers because, while they may be able to find loads in the area, they have a harder time finding loads to take out or backhauls. Typically, these regional, low outbound shipment areas have tighter capacity.

– Equipment—Sometimes it’s easier to find a driver and harder to find the right equipment for your full truckload shipment. Different types of cargo have different equipment needs. For example, temperature-sensitive items may need a refrigerated truck and heavy machinery may need a flatbed. Sometimes the truckload equipment you need isn’t available for that lane. When this happens, it affects truckload capacity because there just aren’t enough trucks with the equipment shippers need at the exact time they need it.

– Driver Shortage—We mentioned this briefly before, but the driver shortage affects truckload capacity for obvious reasons. Without drivers, there simply aren’t trucks moving cargo. According to the American Trucking Associations (ATA), the trucking industry is short by approximately 35,000 to 40,000 drivers.

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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.

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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.

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Specialized is a transportation option for items that require specialized handling, equipment, or shipping conditions. Specialized shipments may include high-value cargo, oversized cargo, or cargo 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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