LTL vs. FTL Shipping: What’s the Difference?

While global trade has seen its ups and downs since the start of the COVID outbreak, e-commerce isn’t going anywhere. In fact, it’s growing at unprecedented rates. In 2020, the first year of the pandemic saw a $244.2 billion or 43% growth in e-commerce sales.

As online shoppers become more comfortable with the idea of buying things online, the demand for shipping goods will increase even more. That’s why you need to know the difference between LTL and FTL shipping, so you can offer your customers a better experience. 

Keep reading to know the differences between these two shipping options.

What is FTL Shipping

There are two basic types of for-hire trucking in the United States, Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) and Full-Truckload (FTL). FTL shipping is when a shipper contracts an entire trailer load to a trucking company. The shipper pays for the use of the whole trailer, whether it is half-full or completely packed. 

What is LTL Shipping

LTL shipping is when a shipper has a smaller shipment that will not completely fill a trailer. The shipper pays for the space their shipment occupies in the trailer, which means they share the trailer with other LTL shippers. This can save on shipping costs, but it also means that your shipment may take longer to reach its destination.

Weight Allowed for LTL vs FTL Shipping

The main difference between LTL (less than truckload) and FTL (full truckload) shipping is the amount of weight that is allowed. LTL shipping typically allows for weights of 50-5,000 pounds, while FTL shipping requires a minimum of 10,000 pounds. This is why LTL shipping is often used for smaller shipments, while FTL is typically used for larger shipments. 

How Fast Do the Goods Arrive

LTL shipments typically take longer to arrive than FTL shipments. This is because they are sent on smaller trucks and have to make more stops along the way.

With an FTL shipping service, you are not sharing the freight space with others. This means that it doesn’t have to wait for other shipments to fill the space so that you can get your goods as soon as possible.

The Difference in Cost Between LTL and FTL Shipping

The cost to ship with an LTL carrier is less than that of an FTL carrier because the LTL carrier can ship multiple customers’ shipments on one truck. The cost to ship with an FTL carrier is higher because the FTL carrier has to dedicate an entire truck to one customer’s shipment. For any cargo transportation needs, you can get more information at

Transport Your Goods in the Best and Most Affordable Way by Choosing the Right Shipping Services

If you’re trying to figure out whether to use LTL or FTL shipping for your business, it’s essential to understand the difference between the two. LTL shipping is best for smaller shipments that can be delivered within a few days. FTL shipping is best for larger shipments that require a longer delivery time.

Ultimately, the decision of which shipping method to use depends on your specific needs. For instance, if you are going to ship fragile goods, then FTL shipping is the way to go. You have to consider several factors and not only focus on the price when choosing the freight transportation to go for.

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