Freightquote.com has an amazingly user-friendly quote request interface. Shippers simply log into their account (which is free to set up), enter some pertinent information like weight, dimension, origin, destination, special equipment and freight class, and click a button. Almost instantly, the screen fills with quotes from different carriers, sometimes even from different modes of transportation. The shipper can compare prices and transit times before making a shipping decision.
In order to make sure that the quotes received are the best and most accurate quotes for a particular load though, the shipper must really make sure that he or she has entered the right freight class for the load.
Freight class helps a carrier determine how best to fit specific cargo into the trailer. Pallets of cement blocks probably shouldn’t be loaded in on top of cases of ceramic restaurant dishware. So, the right mix of freight on the trailer is necessary. The cement blocks and the dishware have different freight classes to help with this.
Many shippers consider their freight as “top load only” – believing that nothing should be stacked on top of it. Too much “top load freight” can hamstring a carrier. If nothing else can be stacked on certain freight, filling a trailer is difficult. Because of its limiting nature, “top load freight” is more expensive to ship. Bottom freight can tend to ride on the top or the bottom whereas top freight is eliminating use of 50% of the trailer. Naturally, as you may expect, top load freight is more expensive to ship.
Freight classes range from 50 to 500 – the higher the number, the more easily damaged, the higher risk (and more expensive to ship) the freight is. If your freight has a higher classification, a change in packaging can help drop it down a bit. Any reduction in the risk of damage can help bring the freight class and shipping cost down.
Sometimes, by taking a closer look at the packaging, you could feasibly end up saving some money in the long run.
Freight classes for all products can be found in the National Motor Freight Classification book, generally referred to as the NMFC book. Almost every category of product is listed in the NMFC book, complete with sub-categories.
Each distinct product has a corresponding freight class.
If a shipper has trouble determining the appropriate freight class for any particular load, Freightquote’s expert staff can help identify the right class. In general, freight classes are determined by the density of the item being shipped. A correct freight class determination is imperative to receiving an accurate quote and not being surprised by a higher charge after delivery is made due to miscalculated freight class.
To make sure that the best possible rate is quoted and charged for freight, a shipper must pay special attention to freight class. Sometimes, just making sure the right freight class is entered can save headache and money in the end. Other times, adjustments can be made to cargo so that the freight class is actually lowered. In any event, shippers can trust the freight experts at Freightquote.com to help make the call.