RFX Blog

When is LTL Freight Shipping Right for Your Business?

January 10th, 2013

LTL Freight Shipping

Less than truckload shipping, or LTL freight shipping, is used when a relatively small shipment doesn’t require a full truckload trailer. Full truckload trailers can be up to 48 or 53 feet in length and are generally used for much larger shipments. Choosing less than truckload is not a complicated process, but there are certain pros and cons you should be aware of before choosing an LTL freight company for your business.

Positives of Using Less Than Truckload

The best thing about LTL freight shipping is the cost, which is a fraction of what you would pay to hire a full truckload shipping service. This is possibly its most attractive attribute, if you are a small business on a budget. There are also optional yet very convenient services that less than truckload offers to its customers. These include liftgate services, residential pickup or delivery, notification prior to delivery and freeze protection. Full truck load freight has yet to offer such services, giving less than truckload a competitive edge and providing customers with an easier delivery experience.

Negatives of Using Less Than Truckload

One of the major differences between less than truckload and full truckload is that the latter is an exclusive service, carrying the shipment of just one business or customer. Less than truckload, however, services many different people at once, with one carrier containing numerous different shipments. This can make the overall delivery process much longer than truckload. LTL freight companies also require their customers package their items in accordance to DOT standards in order to be protected from freezing or harsh weather, which can be difficult or for those unfamiliar with such standards or who don’t have the time.

The Size is What Matters

Although these pros and cons need to be considered, in the end, the size of your shipment is going to be the major tipping point. Truckload carriers typically do not service businesses that don’t have a substantial amount of cargo to fill their truck’s very large trailers. Even if they did, it wouldn’t make much sense for you to pay more money in order for you to ship a somewhat smaller shipment when you could do so for much less. In this case, LTL freight is the way to go and the aforementioned cons can be easily minimized with such services such as expedited delivery.


With LTL operations based in the northeast and midwest, the RFX companies specialize in refrigerated LTL services.  We’ve built a business that is flexible and provides custom LTL transportation for smaller volume refrigerated shipments.

Posted on January 10th, 2013 in LTL Freight Shipping