What Are the Types of Freight?

Designing and manufacturing a product is only half the battle. After it has been produced, you have to find a way to get it to market – and that’s where freight transportation comes in handy. Whether by ground, rail or air, there are various types of freight transportation you have at your disposal – and they all have their fair share of advantages and disadvantages. Ultimately, the type of freight transportation will depend on what’s best for your product and for your situation.

In this post, we’ll take a closer look at three of the most popular types of freight transportation to help you determine which one works best for you and your product. Here’s what you need to know:

Ground Freight Transportation

It’s estimated that there are at least 1 million semi-trucks on American roads and highways at any given time, driving products from their point of origin to their final destination. Perhaps the biggest benefit of ground freight transportation is that it’s affordable. It takes a small crew to load the truck, usually just one person to drive it and fuel costs are more manageable than by air or sea. This all translates to lower overall costs, which can be a big determining factor for companies that need to stay on budget.

Another nice thing about ground freight transportation is that it’s versatile. There are various types of ground transportation options that you can select from depending on the product you’re moving. There’s less than truckload, or LTL, the most affordable and reliable type of ground freight. There’s also partial truckload, full truckload and air ride truckload. Whether you’re shipping hazardous materials, need your product climate controlled or need to transport oversized items, ground freight can be the ideal choice.

Ocean Freight Transportation

Ocean freight transportation involves shipping products by sea. It’s best utilized when transporting goods across oceans or long distances. It’s also ideal for the shipment of oversized, heavy or extremely large cargo. Though it’s not as fast as air transportation, it’s also about half the price – which can help keep budgets on track. Another key benefit is that it’s an ideal means of shipping large volumes of cargo over long distances, again offering a more economical alternative compared to air freight.

It also tends to be a safe transportation option and ocean vessels have become more environmentally friendly over time.

Airfreight Transportation

Airfreight transportation isn’t cheap. Nor do airplanes have the same cargo capacity as ocean liners or semi-trucks. But the biggest benefit associated with air freight transportation is the speed at which it can move. It’s flat-out fast. For the right type of product that’s in demand, spending a little bit extra to expedite air shipment can actually end up making a company more money in the long term.

Airfreight transportation is associated with a variety of other benefits as well, including travel consistency, lower insurance premiums on shipped goods, better security and more frequent shipments. The high comparative cost may be off-putting for some, but for others it can make perfect sense – especially when shipping goods that are needed fast or are in high demand.


What type of freight transportation is best for your company and for your goods or products? For more information on the different types of air freight and which one is best for you and your situation, contact NAS today. With more than 50 years’ worth of experience in the freight transportation industry, we have the solutions to meet your needs.

Contact us today for more information.

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