We ship a lot of items at FreightPros. We ship engines, household goods…all sorts of stuff. And though we try to make ourselves available to our customers, to assist them in their daily shipping needs in any way that we can, there are definitely things that we DO NOT SHIP. One of these things is cassssshhhh money. There are numerous ways to move money, but shipping cash is tougher. Money is easy. Wire transfers, Venmo, Paypal, bank transfers, etc. Technology has brought us into an age where something called BitCoin exists and acts as completely electronic currency. Young kids use credit cards more than cash. People are trying to retire the penny. It’s madness! And though I don’t think the greenback will be going the way of the dodo anytime soon, our collective reliance on (and the ubiquity of) paper money is changing. So if you’re looking to move a large amount of cash, there are some things you need to think about. Why doesn’t FreightPros move cash? It’s pretty simple: The freight carriers that we partner with do not accept shipments of cash because these shipments are prone to theft. Next time you’re at the bank, check out the tank-looking truck idling at the curb. THAT’s the kind of truck that transports cash, that’s into shipping money. Not our carriers. You’ll also find that neither FedEx nor UPS will ship cash (though UPS does say it will move checks). USPS will ship money, though they highly suggest using money orders that can be replaced in the event of loss or damage. And that’s what it comes down to when you’re shipping money in the form of cash: insurance (though not exactly freight insurance). That’s the thing about dollar bills – there’s no paper trail. When it’s gone, it’s gone. There are numerous ways to move money around that are easier and more secure than shipping cash. But if you’ve exhausted these options and there’s no alternative to shipping money, your best bet is the post office, money orders, and insurance.
Federal Express shipping rates are some of the best in the small package or parcel shipping game. Everyone knows this. But, you ask, I’ve never heard of “Federal Express.” It sounds like something familiar but…oh wait…FEDeral EXpress. Right. Federal Express shipping AKA FedEx shipping is one of the largest movers of freight on the planet. Along with UPS, they make up the majority of the small packaged courier industry. But what you might not know about is the Federal Express shipping rates for LTL and Fedex volume. We’ve discussed that regular LTL shipments are not the same as Amazon, small package UPS, Post Office shipping, or small package FedEx. LTL shipments are commonly heavier, use pallets, freight class, and sometimes charge extra for residential delivery services. And while there are hundreds of carriers both big (R & L Freight) and small (New Penn) that service primarily LTL, Federal Express Shipping also has LTL rates. But how does the pricing work for Federal Express shipping? This is often a lane by lane situation, but our Account Executives spend hours on the phone getting us better contracts with carriers both regional and national that focus primarily (or some cases solely) on LTL shipping, rather than small package or full truckload rates. And while Federal Express certainly has good rates and excellent service, that doesn’t mean that other carriers don’t have a coverage map. Carriers such as Roadrunner or Central Freight have hundreds of terminals spread out across the country, not to mention contracts with tons of other carriers for interline purposes. Different carriers are better for different things. Some are regional, some are national, some are faster transit, and some slower – it just depends what you’re looking for! If you’ve never tried to get a quote using one of our fleet of LTL carriers such as Federal Express shipping, contact us and we’ll answer all your questions. A broker handles all aspects of your freight shipments, and that includes getting you the best price available. cc image courtesy BriYYZ via Flickr
Getting freight picked up from or delivered to a residence is different when shipping LTL than when you’re shipping small package with UPS or Amazon. Part of this has to do with the size of most LTL freight shipments. LTL shipments are rarely a cardboard box that can be left on a doorstep. More often than not they are palletized and weigh over 100lbs. The second has to do with the size of the truck delivering or picking up the freight. Residential streets are often small and not equipped to accommodate a semi-truck.
Because of these LTL shipping aspects, if you need something picked up from or delivered to a residence you’ll need to pay the additional services fee for LTLResidential Delivery or Residential Pickup. All freight carriers are different, so check with your freight broker for pricing. Unfortunately one charge does not cover both pickup and residential delivery. As pickup will be handled by one terminal, and delivery handled by another terminal (and sometimes even a different carrier due to interlining) residential delivery is a separate charge from residential pickup.
You Will Need a Liftgate
The other thing to keep in mind for residential freight services is that you’ll probably need a Liftgate for both pickup and residential delivery. LTL carriers are not moving companies, so they will not take freight to the front door. If you’re having freight picked up at a residence you’ll need to have the freight palletized and on the street so the driver can easily get the freight on to the truck. Unless you have a forklift or the freight is small, you’ll need a liftgate to help get the freight on or off the back of the truck. Some carriers do not charge for liftgate fees and some do, however if you are charged for a liftgate you’ll need one for both pickup and residential delivery.
Residential Pickups/Delivery Fees
If you are having LTL freight delivered to a residence, make sure that you’ve selected the Residential Delivery additional service, as well as a Destination Liftgate. When creating the BOL, make sure you put the street address and contact information for the resident in the Special Instructions where it’s clearly visible and legible. The carrier will need to call and make a delivery appointment with the resident, and without correct contact information delivery delays can occur.
Standard protocol for LTL shipping is business to business and dock to dock. This does not mean that they can’t deliver or pick up from a residence, it just means that you’ll need to pay for some additional services and make sure you have all the necessary contact information on the BOL used at the time of pickup. Residential Delivery / Residential freight services in LTL shipping are not things you should be afraid of, and a few simple steps will go a long way to ensuring your freight moves successfully.
A quick peak at Wikipedia will inform you that the United States Postal Service was founded in 1971. That will seem a bit late, but keep reading and you’ll learn it was preceded by a number of independent courier organizations such as the United States Post Office (USPO) in 1775. In 1792, the Post Office Department (USPOD) was officially formed. Prior to these official organizations, people have been concerned about post office shipping since the beginning of the United States, as riders criss-crossed New England in the early 17th century passing mail to and fro. In the past, there was romance surrounding post office shipping. Evolving technology brought new forms of communication, making it easier and, pardon the modern vernacular, cooler, to pass messages from one person to the next. The impact this communication and technology had on our civilization is impossible to wholly quantify, especially in a blog this size. Lately, post office shipping has existed under a fat black cloud. The economical issues faced by the United States over the past decade have put a whole in many folks wallets, and the USPS is no different. The discussion of the legacy of the USPS is a conversation for a different time though, because today I’m going to go over a few little differences between post office shipping and LTL shipping.
The first thing to keep in mind with post office shipping is the weight limit. Per the USPS website the maximum weight your package can weigh is 70lbs. Anything over that, and USPS won’t be able to accommodate the shipment. Compare this to LTL shipping, and you’ll find that 70lbs is the bare minimum that you should think about shipping LTL. As you can see, they are not competitors.
Post office shipping services have expanded in recent years, as the USPS attempts to keep up with its direct competitors Fedex and UPS. Fedex offers LTL rates, and there are also UPS ltl rates to contend with, but they ship items of all shapes and sizes so they are a competitor to both the USPS as well as LTL carriers and online freight brokers. The USPS now offers to pick up your package from your home via appointment, though this wasn’t always the case. In the past, you would have to deal with the lines and crowds of the post office if you wanted to ship something. In LTL shipping, the carriers provide business pickup and delivery services for free because the average weight and size of an LTL shipment is too large to easily transport to a carrier terminal or hub (though it is possible to pickup or drop off freight directly at the terminal).
Packaging for post office shipping is very different from the packaging required for LTL freight shipping. As I said before, post office shipping usually deals with smaller shipments in both weight and size. The standard packaging for post office shipping is a cardboard box stuffed with packing peanuts and other similar packing materials. LTL shipping on the other hand deals with larger shipments, so a standard sized pallet or a standard crate is usually used to package the material. This makes it easier for the carrier to use a forklift to transport the freight from dock to dock. Because LTL shipments are usually less protected, we also suggest getting third party freight insurance if you’re planning on shipping fragile items less than truckload. These are the basic differences between Post Office Shipping and LTL shipping, but if you’d like to learn more about the latter, download our FREE freight shipping guide today!
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