What is a Less Than Container Load Shipping?

fcl vs lcl

Less-than-container-load shipping, LCL, is the transportation of shipments that share container with goods from another owner. You choose LCL when you can not fill a full container with your product. LCL freight is usually placed on pallets and weighs between 1 m3/1000 kg to 15 m3/15000 kg

LCL is perfect for a business that ships freight weighing less than 15 m3 or 15000 kg and does not require an entire container.

Benefits of LCL shipping:

  • Smaller shipments. If your business ships rather irregularly, or each shipment is relatively small, LCL poses a significant advantage over FCL.
  • Multiple destinations. If your business frequently ships small parcels to end consumers in multiple locations nationwide, LCL may be a more expeditious and affordable solution.
  • Technology/visibility. The LCL industry uses the most up-to-date technologies: estimates and quotes, invoicing, tracking, and delivery confirmation are automated and managed online.

What is a Full Container Load Shipping?

FCL stands for Full Container Load, a shipping mode whereby an entire container is dedicated to transporting an individual shipment. FCL shipment offers several benefits over its alternative method, LCL, or less than container load shipping. FCL is generally utilized for large cargo when there are ten or more palettes prepared for shipment.

A full container load is a shipping mode that involves renting an entire container to move the freight. FCL has a plenitude of benefits over LCL, although the pros must be weighed with the costs:

  • Lower risk. With FCL shipping, you rent the container, load it, and ship your goods. The risk of damage is minimal as compared to LCL when your cargo shares space with goods from other company or owner
  • Speed. FCL is streamlined and fast, your freight is being transported straight from its origin and to the final destination.
  • Shipment size. Since FCL shipping involves renting the full container, you have a ton of room to ship large, or hazardous items or non-stackable cargo.

Differences Between FCL and LCL

The differences between FCL and LCL can be grouped into four brackets:

  • Size of the shipment. The major difference is simply the space in a container that a single freight requires. LCL freight is a smaller shipment that takes up a portion of a container whereas FCL shipping tends to move a larger freight that fills up an entire container.
  • Cost. Since LCL freight is smaller and gives room for other shippers’ cargoes, it is a cheaper option. FCL freight uses the entire container and costs more
  • Handling. You must also consider how fragile and sensitive your shipment is. With FCL, the carrier will pick up your product at the point of origin and deliver it directly to the receiver. LCL shipments are susceptible to damage, and loss since products share space with different cargo on the ride.

Making the right shipping decision is imperative since it saves time and money for your business. Whether you require an LCL or FCL shipping solution, look no further than CREDO TRANS!

To wrap it up, both LCL and FCL methods can be beneficial. However, whether you plan to utilize LCL or FCL service, take into careful consideration your freight volume, shipping budget, timeframes, fragility, and value of your cargo.

How to Optimize Your Options: LCL vs. FCL

To optimize your LCL and FCL shipments, let us present the most relevant scenarios for your business.

  • Consider the number of pallets. If you’re shipping more than 10 pallets at a time, go with the FCL. When shipping fewer than 10 pallets, LCL will be more cost-effective.
  • Pickup and delivery. If your cargo requires strict pickup and delivery times, go with the FCL since it provides greater predictability
  • Care and handling. If your shipment is fragile or you’re concerned about possible damage, use the FCL. It provides a dedicated container for the entire route
  • Irregular freight. If you are shipping heavy or odd-shaped cargo that cannot be fully palletized or occupies more than half of container space, go with the FCL.

As you make your supply chain management decisions, it’s always a great idea to turn to pros. Contact CREDO TRANS today to experience the difference we can make for you.

If your business is looking for ways to save money, resources, and time when shipping cargo, reach out to one of the CREDO TRANS team members and ask us for recommendations! We’re well-versed in all things LCL and FCL!

At CREDO TRANS, we know the importance of having a reliable LCL or FCL freight carrier by your side. We offer FCL and LCL freight services and suggest transportation solutions for different situations to assist you in achieving business goals while providing cost-effectiveness and timeliness. This guide gives insight into what LCL and FCL freight means and explores the key differences between the two methods of shipping, their benefits, and drawbacks. Let us lead you through the entire LCL and FCL process.

Whether you require LCL or FCL, our experts have the expertise needed to get the job done. To explore our freight shipping options, and discover how our services can help your business, contact CREDO TRANS now!