Mastering Flatbed Shipping: A Comprehensive Guide

Flatbed Shipping Guide: How to Prepare for Flatbed Shipping?

Posted on:
Sep 11, 2019

If you ever wanted to ship items too oversized for LTL shipping, you may have heard about the benefits of flatbed shipping. It can be an excellent solution for industrial shippers and individual delivery of large objects. Learn how to manage logistics operations and get the best flatbed shipping rates!

What is flatbed shipping?

Flatbed shipping is a type of truckload shipping that refers to moving oversized cargo with an open trailer. Unlike dry van shipping, flatbed trailers provide vast space for locating large units. It is a plane platform, a trailer with no sides or roof, often with an additional deck. Due to these features, you can load and unload your freight from different sides of a flatbed, including its top and back.

Flatbed shipping helps move items within industrial areas like steel manufacturers, machinery and equipment, building materials, heavy hauls, and oversized loads. Shippers often need to move the items requiring particular loading and don’t have much time for numerous physical operations. Flatbed trucks are the best option for resolving these issues.

Benefits of flatbed shipping

Sometimes, flatbed transportation is the only way to transport your oversized freight to the destination. Due to the nature of the trailer, it offers flexibility and versatility according to your items’ sizes and types. Thus, you can securely accommodate oversized and overweight units in a flatbed trailer avoiding freight damage.

Also, there are different flatbed trailers, such as drop decks, double drop decks, lowboys, and removable goosenecks. Those have different sizes and loading docks, which lets you choose the most suitable type of equipment for your freight. It facilitates handling the cargo despite its weight and reduces the need for additional physical help.

How to prepare for oversized shipping?

Before booking a flatbed shipment, learning about the main factors affecting your logistics choices is essential. If you get informed about the details of a large items shipping organization, your logistics experience will be smooth and effective.

Get accurate freight information

Although flatbed transportation is meant to move oversized loads, it’s not limitless in size and dimensions. It is crucial to know your shipment well, including all the dimensions, weight, and sizes. Try to be precise when measuring your cargo and considering the most suitable transport unit. Typically, flatbed trailers are 48 feet in length, but it’s not a limit. For example, you can look for a double-drop flatbed trailer that offers up to 80 feet in length.

There are specific limitations for each type of flatbed trailer, and it’s essential to ensure your cargo validates with load permits. Logistics limitations usually depend on your cargo weight. A standard flatbed trailer provides a capacity of 48,000 pounds. If your load weight exceeds this, you’ll have to take care of additional permit paperwork.

Consider accessorial charges

Since flatbed often involves moving specialized loads, professional equipment or additional services are usually required to complete the delivery. For example, you might hire helpers to handle a load of a large size before shipping. If you’ve previously disassembled your freight, you’ll probably need some assistance assembling at the arrival.

If you’ve provided imprecise measurements of your cargo, it may lead to remeasuring it by a carrier service, charging extra costs. Choosing the wrong flatbed type can result in using additional fixating appliances you have to pay for. Similarly, insufficient protection can cause cargo damage during flatbed shipping.

Before booking a flatbed shipment, consult an expert to choose the proper equipment and services for your freight. Experienced services like GoShip can advise you on the best truck choices and appropriate documentation for your flatbed shipping. Besides, you’ll be aware of the charges caused by shipping delays. It will improve your time management and planning activities.

Choose reliable shipping partners

When searching for a suitable flatbed type, consider all the cargo features and your logistics budget. It’s equally important to communicate all the questions with your carrier to ensure they know how to move your oversized load quickly and safely. Learn what freight the carrier has transported before and if there have been any challenges in the process.

Arranging flatbed shipments on your own can be burdensome and expensive. Working with an experienced shipping company will make the process easier for you. Shipping providers like GoShip can connect you to a network of flatbed carriers who’ll provide you with high-quality logistics service and show you the benefits of flatbed shipping.

Compare flatbed shipping rates

The more specific flatbed type you’re looking for, the more limited the transportation capacity. Sometimes, retrieving the requested truck to meet your logistics needs takes longer, increasing flatbed shipping rates. If you want to avoid overpaying, try to plan your shipments in advance. Given enough time, you’ll manage to find a carrier at an affordable price.

On our platform, you can look for available carriers in real time, compare their rates, and book shipments in a few simple steps. Visit the GoShip website and get a free quote!

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