So you have something to ship from your home or residential business that is too big for a parcel and too small for a big truck. LTL freight shipping is a great solution for this. There are a few things you’ll want to know about scheduling your pickup with the LTL carrier. One very important thing is to give as much advance notice as possible. It will make all the difference in your shipping experience.
Giving advance notice allows you and the carrier to coordinate effectively. The reason you want to do this is because the carrier needs some advance notice to plan your pickup. They often need special equipment that it is high demand. This means they need to find a place for you on the schedule. Also, you will need time to clear your schedule to fit with theirs. Our advice is to keep your calendar clear for the day of pickup and the day after. This is just in case they can’t make it on the scheduled day and need to reschedule for the following day.
LTL carriers typically run their drivers on standard routes
Most of their pickups are in commercial areas. Commercial areas are places where you are likely to find warehouses, factories and distribution centers. City planners often zone these areas away from residential areas for safety and aesthetic reasons. Considering this, most residential pickups are normally considered out of route for the carrier. This means that you will need to give them advance notice so their dispatchers can plan to make your pickup.
Also, having advance notice is good for your schedule too. Typically, the standard pickup window this is a minimum of 2 hours but you should block out a at least 4 hours. If you have things to get done that day it is best to complete them before the pickup window. A normal day for most drivers is to deliver in the morning and pickup in the afternoon. Depending on where your located, it is common for residential pickups to happen in the later part of the day. The carrier or broker you are working with should be able to give you an idea on that day. Drivers may or may not call ahead, it is your responsibility as the shipper to be ready for them.
LTL carriers do not guarantee pickups and often need a pickup window
This is because they have no control over the factors that impact their route. There could be delays at other shippers, traffic delays and mechanical issues. Also, drivers need to take breaks. If you give them notice and they can commit to a time window there is a better chance you won’t be waiting for them only to find they don’t show. Just in case, don’t schedule your pickup the day before a trip or important event. If the carrier misses the first time, they will reschedule for the next day, usually at the same time. Granted this is not ideal and can be tremendously inconvenient but it is part of LTL shipping and best to plan for it. Often the lower rate is worth it!
We hope this article was really helpful to you. If you need someone to help you move your items we can help. We have great rates and carriers all over the country. We can move LTL shipments in the lower 48 states, Canada, Alaska, Hawaii, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean.
Transportation Executive with experience in developing processes and controls for early stage start up companies. Specialties include: Sales, Marketing, Transportation, Trucking, Brokerage, Project Transport and Rail Operations.,Organizational Design, Process Development, Accounts Receivable Management, Leadership, and Business Start-ups.
Let's get started!