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Benefits of Intermodal Transportation

When logistics providers are looking to move cargo, there are many options to consider. Shippers want the highest quality transportation services at the lowest price. How can logistics providers fulfill these shipping requirements? The solution is intermodal transportation. 

What is intermodal transportation?

Intermodal freight transportation is the movement of freight using more than one method of transportation. Typically when the freight moves from one mode to another, it is not directly handled. In intermodal transportation, freight is usually moved in shipping containers built in standardized dimensions. Trains, ships, trucks, and airplanes can be used to move freight over long distances, and trucks are ideal for moving freight short distances. The beginning and end of the shipment is often conducted on the road so trucks play an integral role in intermodal transportation. Intermodal trucking is a specific type of intermodal transportation. To learn more about intermodal trucking, read this blog. 

To learn all of the benefits of intermodal transportation, continue reading below. 

1. Intermodal is Cost Efficient

One of the most appealing advantages of intermodal transportation is that combining more than one method of transportation saves shippers money. When the freight lanes align with intermodal options such as rail, water, or air transportation, switching from OTR transport to intermodal reduces shipment costs. 

2. Intermodal is Green

Intermodal transportation is environmentally friendly. As emissions standards are raised, the logistics industry is being forced to adapt. Intermodal transportation is the solution. For long distance national or international hauls, train and sea transport are more efficient than OTR diesel trucking. Only a single gallon of fuel is required for a train to transport a ton of freight over 450 miles. For short distances, particularly at the beginning and end of the shipment journey, intermodal trucking is the most efficient and agile transportation option. The smaller trucks used for drayage are more fuel efficient than the large diesel trucks used for long-haul trucking, and are necessary for navigating the last mile in deliveries. To lower greenhouse gas emissions and improve the bottom line, intermodal transportation is the solution. To learn more about the environmental impact of intermodal transport, read this blog. 

3. Intermodal Reduces Traffic

Switching from OTR transport to intermodal transport dramatically reduces the number of freight trucks on highways. A single freight train can transport more than 250 truckloads of goods. Reducing traffic congestion is good for the environment, and it is good for business. Customers increasingly demand fast shipping times, and logistics providers are under a great amount of pressure to meet the demand. Shippers and customers suffer when freight idles in transit, and opting for intermodal is the best way to keep freight moving so that it reaches the final destination as quickly as possible. 

4. Intermodal Reduces Noise Pollution

As we know, using intermodal transportation reduces the number of freight trucks on highways. One of the major benefits of reducing road traffic is a decrease in noise pollution. Noise pollution takes a toll on the environment, adversely affects wildlife, and causes stress to humans. Reducing noise pollution is good for everyone and everything. 

5. Intermodal is Secure

Every time a truck stops, OTR shipments are vulnerable to theft. For long distance trucking hauls, there are many stops. Opting for an intermodal solution that combines rail, air, or sea for the longest portions of the trip with trucking for the short segments reduces the number of times the freight is stationary. The more the freight is moving, the safer it is. On a train, cargo is difficult to access and the cargo is never left alone. 

6. Intermodal is Flexible 

Within the logistics industry, there is a great amount of unpredictability. Every industry is impacted by the recent supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, and changing regulations. The logistics industry is challenged by these realities and also uniquely positioned to address the hurdles. Intermodal transportation provides the flexibility and versatility needed to keep cargo moving. In these challenging times, considering intermodal transportation opens up options in terms of capacity, quality, and price. 

How QFS Can Help

There are many different intermodal trucking companies, and it is critical to choose the best freight logistics specialist to oversee your intermodal transportation needs. The freight logistic coordinator must have extensive relationships with terminals, understand how to liaise between customers and transportation modalities, and have the most up-to-date technology to keep the cargo safe. With over 60 years of experience, QFS is a global leader in intermodal trucking. With skillfully trained drivers, sophisticated tracking technology, and meticulously maintained fleets, QFS is an expert in ensuring customers receive their products on time and in perfect condition. Shipping rates are competitive, so you always get the best deal. Customer service is exceptional and every detail is carefully considered. To take advantage of the benefits of intermodal transportation, contact QFS today!