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Comparing LTL vs Partial Truckloads

Comparing LTL vs Partial Truckloads

When in the market for a shipping provider and shipping rates, your goal is to maximize space. Should you go with a partial truckload or a Less Than Truckload with an LTL freight provider? While you might have thought these were the same type of haul, there are reasons to choose either a partial or an LTL truckload. Consider the differences between each so you can select the exemplary truckload service for your shipment.

What is LTL Freight?

If you have freight that is a single pallet or a few hundred pounds, then you will be using an LTL shipper in most instances. Otherwise, you risk overpaying with a partial truckload. A less than truckload or LTL shipment is measured according to weight or pallet size. For a typical LTL freight load, the size ranges from 200 – 5,000 pounds and is the preferred shipping method for freight between 1 – 6 pallets. Therefore, the shipment does not take up the entire trailer and can share cargo space with other shipping customers.


The idea is that you are saving money on shipping costs thanks to the decreased fuel and space needed for your load. LTL shipping is well suited for local and regional deliveries. LTL freight typically uses straight trucks, also known as box trucks. These are 23 feet in length and far shorter than the 53-foot trailers of big rigs. As a result, freight rates can be less expensive simply based on the smaller footprint of the equipment and truck driver.

What is a Partial Truckload?

A standard freight partial truckload is a freight haul that weighs more than an LTL load but less than a full truckload. For a partial truckload, the weight is between 6,000 – 27,000 pounds or the equivalent of 8 – 18 pallets of freight.

When to Choose LTL vs. Partial Truckload

When you have a partial truckload shipment, you do not have to worry about freight class, which allows you to choose the cheapest mode based on your budget. You are also less likely to be stuck with a more costly rate due to a lack of options.


For example, with partial truckload hauls, you can use one truck for all of your freight rather than load and reload cargo for an LTL shipment, thus ensuring less opportunity for damage, loss, or theft. More importantly, you save time on having to handle cross-docking as you do with LTL freight.

Choosing the Best Freight Mode

By partnering with Royal Transportation Services, you gain access to our comprehensive cargo shipping specialists to ensure you always get the best freight rates for your shipments. Along with LTL and partial truckload freight, we also provide total logistics and supply chain services. Become a partner with Royal Transportation Services and allow us to help keep your business moving every step of the way! Contact us today and receive your first custom quote. 


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