When your determining a freight rate, you may be surprised to learn that every carrier works off what is known as a “different base rate tariff”. When you attempt to receive a rate from a carrier, there are a few methods you can use:

  1. Call the carrier’s rating department
  2. Go to the carriers website
  3. Use a carrier provided rate disk

No matter what method you use it all works out the same; you enter in your zip codes, the product classification and the weight. From this, the carrier uses their base rate, fuel surcharges, minus any discounts, to determine the shipping rate. Sound confusing? It is. But the truth is that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Since every carrier works off a different rate, if you really want to lower your costs, you have to do this for every single carrier, comparing rates. But, of course, every carrier servicing any set of zip codes. One of the most basic features of a Transportation Management program-least cost routing-provides substantial savings simply by automating the process of comparing rates so you can select the proper carrier in an instant. Now, another trend is starting to develop. Three relatively new carriers have entered the long haul market. Their transit times are a bit longer than we’re used to seeing which tends to lower the price. Companies are realizing that an additional day or two is sometimes acceptable to their customer who may once have been a next-day consignee. The savings from this type of carrier base can exceed more than 25%. That is substantial and it doesn’t matter if you’re a small shipper or not. For more cost saving options please contact us today.

Carl Lappke