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What is Ground Freight Shipping?

The world is getting smaller every single day due to modern technology and transportation options.

This has created a new approach for businesses that want to expand their reach and extend their operations globally. 

Logistics has always been a critical component of business and is considered the backbone of any modern economy.

Through the science of logistics, businesses can plan and organize their procurement, delivery, and distribution of goods on a global scale.

One of the most important aspects of logistics is ground freight shipping.

In this article, we will focus specifically on this kind of ground freight shipping: what it is, how it works, and the different types you should be aware of.

What is Ground Freight Shipping?

Ground freight shipping is a cost-effective way to move large items from one place to another. Ground freight shipping—also called land freight shipping—is the movement of goods by trucks or railways.

The average transit time for ground shipping is three to 10 days, depending on the pickup and delivery locations.

The main drawback of ground shipping—how long it takes—is also its main advantage: because it's slower, the cost of shipping is much lower compared to shipping by air or sea. 

How Ground Freight Shipping Works

Shipping via ground freight generally takes place in three phases:

Collection- First, the shipment is collected from the shipper's loading site. This could be a business or residence.

Delivery to the service provider/third-party warehouse- The shipment is then delivered to a service provider or third-party warehouse. This is where the shipment will be sorted and combined with other loads whose destination is the same.

Sorting and delivery- Shipments are continuously sorted and combined with other shipments going to the same location. This process repeats until the shipment reaches its final destination. 

Ground freight shipping can also be part of intermodal transportation, where a combination of different modes of transportation is used to move goods.

A typical example would be using sea freight to transport goods to a port, ground freight to transport the goods from the port to a warehouse, then air freight to make the final delivery.

To coordinate the different types of freight shipping and make sure the goods arrive at their destination on time, businesses rely on freight forwarders. 

Freight forwarding is the coordination and shipment of consignments using sea, air, or rail. It is a service that businesses offer to manage import and export operations across borders.

Freight forwarders are responsible for the flow of goods between two locations—the people in the middle who coordinate ground deliveries for customers.

They focus on the logistics of transport, allowing their clients to focus on their core business.

For ground freight shipping, freight forwarders arrange shipments by matching shippers’ loads with available trucking carriers in their networks.

They make sure the shipments are routed correctly, with additional services such as tracking and insurance provided along the way.

Ground freight shipping is preferred for shipping large, unwieldy items such as industrial equipment, auto parts, medical goods, hazardous chemicals, metals, dangerous goods, construction materials, and vehicles across long distances. 

Types of Ground Freight Shipping

There are four main types of ground freight shipping: Less than Truckload (LTL), Full Truck Load (FTL), Partial Truckload (PTL), container trucking, and heavy-lift cargo trucking. 

LTL shipments are categorized as cargo that weighs between 150 and 15,000 pounds and occupies less than 24 feet of space.

This type of shipment is efficient for domestic and international land freight shipments that do not exceed five pallets in size. 

FTL shipping is when the truck’s trailer carries only one shipment. The whole room is set aside for a single particular shipment.

This type of trucking has several advantages, including:

  • It’s cheaper per unit to ship compared to LTL trucking
  • Shipments arrive at their destination faster since there are no other stopovers in between
  • FTL shipments are less likely to get damaged, as there is less handling involved

Container trucking is defined as the movement of shipping containers between a loading site and container port (or yard).

This type of shipment can be used for international and domestic ground freight. It’s also very cost-effective for shipments that require packing in boxes or crates. 

Heavy-lift cargo trucking is when specially made heavy-duty trailers are used to move cargo without regard to size or weight.

This type of trucking is used for shipments that are very large and heavy, like oversized machinery, construction equipment, and vehicles.

Ground freight shipping is a cost-effective way to move large, unwieldy items across long distances.

Whether you’re looking for LTL, FTL, container trucking, or heavy-lift cargo trucking, ground freight shipping can get your goods where they need to go. 

The main drawback of ground shipping is its slow speed. But this also happens to be its main advantage: because i’s slower, the cost of shipping is much lower compared to shipping by air or sea.

So if you have a large item that needs to be transported cheaply and slowly, ground freight shipping is your best bet.

If you need to transport large shipments across long distances, our ground freight shipping services are the perfect solution.

We offer LTL, FTL, container trucking, and heavy-lift cargo trucking, so we can accommodate any size or weight of the shipment. 

And because we're experts in ground freight shipping, we can ensure that your goods arrive at their destination on time and in perfect condition. Contact us today to get started!

See how much time and money you'll save by having our pros help manage your freight.