Tag Archives: multimodal

What Is Multimodal Freight and How Can It Benefit You

Transporting an object from one place to another doesn’t seem like a difficult thing to do unless it’s a volume of freight going within continents. In that case, companies have to utilize several modes of transportation to get their freight from origin to destination. These modes involve a ship, air, rail, and trucking, and can be consolidated in different ways. The two main ways to arrange such a complex combined shipment is either intermodal transportation or multimodal.

What is the difference between Intermodal and Multimodal?

The distinctive feature between these two transportation modes is different cargo handling. When a company manages to use intermodal, they sign multiple contracts with several carriers.

In case of using multimodal, shipping still suggests consolidating modes, but everything is signed under the single bill of lading since the freight is handled by one shipping company. Multimodal is often preferred by the shippers since it’s a solid, end-to-end solution.

Read Intermodal vs Multimodal

Why Choose Multimodal?

It depends on the company’s needs which mode will be a better fit. Of course, intermodal offers benefits to shippers, such as the opportunity to choose carriers with the lowest rates, more flexibility, and control. However, watching every step of the shipment and dealing with all the carriers is time-consuming, and certainly requires effort, which is not for every business. Here are some of the most comprehensive advantages of multimodal transportation:

Time savings

Since multimodal transportation is handled by one shipping provider, you’ll only have to communicate and get a report from one entity. This ensures less worrying about the shipment, and faster transit times, which eventually result in higher productivity.

Cost-efficiency

It may seem like picking carriers with the lowest price is definitely a more profitable option. However, the lowest price is not always the greatest deal. Intermodal transport involves not only different contracts and carriers but also multiple shipment insurances. A much easier logistics coordination within multimodal can help you save a significant amount of money on transportation.

Less worrying

When a single carrier handles you freight from door to door, it ensures easier communication and efficient tracking. Moreover, it delegates a larger piece of responsibility and liability to the company coordinating your logistics.

To sum it up, your business could benefit both from multimodal and intermodal, depending on your company’s goals. However, if you don’t want to control every single move of your freight and deal with lots of paperwork, multimodal transportation would probably be a prudent solution.

Multimodal Transport: What is Multimodal Shipping?

There are many different types of transport and various shipping modes available to shippers today to help move goods all over the world. But sometimes, a single mode is not enough. Perhaps, your goods are going a long way from another part of the world by ship or aircraft. To reach the final destination, freight needs to be moved over the road, air, or ocean. In a nutshell, shippers often need to combine transportation modes in order to get their goods to the right place. Logistics companies define two ways of such combination: intermodal transport and multimodal transport.

What is multimodal transport?

Multimodal transportation is a combination of several shipping modes like a truck, rail, ocean or air to deliver freight to its destination. Multimodal shipping suggests all of your freight movements are handled under a unified bill of lading, even if different carriers are moving it.

What is the difference between multimodal and intermodal?

Both intermodal and multimodal transportation suggest using two or more shipping modes. However, there is a list of differences between intermodal and multimodal. When you ship intermodal, a different carrier is responsible for each part of your transportation. Consequently, you have several separate shipping bills and reports from each link in the chain.

When using multimodal, all of your shipments are signed under a single bill of lading. Both transportation methods have benefits and drawbacks, and here we will dive deep into multimodal.

Benefits of Multimodal Transport

benefits of multimodal shipping

Multimodal transport can benefit many businesses that ship large amounts of freight on a regular basis. The main reason why companies prefer multimodal is that it requires less time and effort. All the shipments are under a single bill and are usually managed by an external party. Other than saving money and time, there are many reasons your company should choose multimodal transport when planning your next shipment, including:

Time savings

Since in multimodal transportation one shipping provider handles the entire process, you’ll only have to communicate and get a report from one company. This ensures less worrying about the shipment, and faster transit times, which eventually result in higher productivity.

Cost-efficiency

It may seem like picking carriers with the lowest price is definitely a more profitable option. However, the lowest price is not always the greatest deal. Intermodal transport involves not only different contracts and carriers but also multiple shipment insurances. A much easier logistics coordination within multimodal can help you save a significant amount of money on transportation.

Less worrying

When a single carrier handles your freight from door to door, it ensures easier communication and efficient tracking. It delegates a larger piece of responsibility and liability to the company coordinating your logistics.

Easier Communication

When companies ship through multimodal transportation, they handle all shipping updates, delays and interactions through one provider and contract. This gives shippers ease of mind and simplifies the process of communicating between different contacts and carriers. Essentially, when you have one person responsible for the entire transportation chain, it’s much easier to just focus on the business and not spend time bouncing from one call to another.

Faster Transit Options

Due to new restrictions on truck drivers on driving hours and other regulations, some longer haul shipments are not as fast as they once were. The combination of different transportation modes under one contract lets you have a piece of mind and balance transit time. That way, you avoid drivers driving too long and therefore bypass shipping delays. Giving companies more options for their shipment gives you control and flexibility over the loading and unloading process.

Ultimately, multimodal transport helps guarantee consumers on-time deliveries and true cost savings. Whether you are shipping by air, rail or barge, multimodal shipping can be a solution for you.

Intermodal vs. Multimodal Freight

It is important to know the difference between intermodal shipping and multimodal shipping to make sure that you are using the best shipping method for your shipment. Many people often confuse intermodal and multimodal shipping. Deciding when to use intermodal or multimodal transport depends on several factors, such as the total cost difference, time savings, and if the shipper wants multiple independent contacts.

Today, we will be learning the difference between intermodal and multimodal freight and when it is best to use each type of transport. 

Intermodal Shipping

Intermodal freight is defined as the transport of freight in a container or vehicle without handling the freight when changing modes. The movement of the cargo from origin to destination is completed by several modes of transport. In intermodal shipping, every mode has a different transport carrier responsible for the shipment. The shipper will have several contracts, one with each transport carrier to handle their portion of the shipment. The different transportation modes of intermodal shipping can include rail, ship, and truck. Using intermodal transport helps to improve security, reduces damage and loss, and allows freight to be transported faster.

Multimodal Shippingintermodal4

Multimodal is the combination of different types of transport to move a shipment. This can include trucks, trains, ships, airplanes, etc. Even though the shipment is broken up into different modes of transport, it still falls under a single contract/bill of lading. Companies that choose multimodal shipping can handle all shipping delays and interactions through one provider and ease the stress of communicating between different contacts. Some of the main advantages of multimodal transport are efficiency in delivery time and proficient shipment tracking.

There are many different variables to take into consideration when deciding which type of transport is best for you and your shipment. Many people lean towards multimodal because it can provide shippers with a more timely, cost-saving shipping resource. Multimodal freight can also be easier to manage since it is through a single contract, unlike intermodal that is covered by various contracts and modes of transport. Intermodal shipping can provide shippers with lower costs and more predictable pricing.

Both intermodal and multimodal transport can help shippers optimize lead times, reduce inventory costs and improve environmental sustainability. Make sure to weigh the options before deciding which would be best for your company and/or shipment. PLS Logistics has access to various multimodal and intermodal freight modes to help businesses optimize their transportation. Get a quote with PLS today!

 

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