Intermodal Shipping: The Best of Both Worlds

When it comes to shipping, trucking is not always the most efficient mode of transportation. Well, at least not by itself. Especially for long, cross-country hauls, driving a truck thousands of miles can be a costly proposition.

Luckily there’s another terrestrial transportation system that has a vast network in place for long-distance travel: the rail. Trains are more fuel-efficient than trucks, which makes them an ideal mode of transport for significantly long distances. But it’s not all about efficiency, of course. What trains gain in cost savings they lose in flexibility. A train will have a hard time reaching a specific building, warehouse or home, while a truck can go pretty much anywhere if there’s an adequate road.

Intermodal shipping, as its name may suggest, combines the best of both modes. It integrates rail and road into a single supply chain to maximize both efficiency and flexibility even over long distances. For example, if you need to ship a container from Miami to Los Angeles, instead of having a truck drive the almost 3,000 miles, it makes more sense to ship your container to your closest railroad station, have a train pull it to LA, where a truck will be waiting to take it to its final destination.

This is why when you choose a 3PL provider, and especially if you ship nationwide, it’s a good idea consider how it can work as part of an intermodal supply chain. BOS Cargo, for example, is strategically based in the city of Mami, just minutes away from the Florida East Coast Railway station. Its comprehensive drayage services make it an ideal partner as the first (or last) leg of your intermodal supply chain.

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Content Creator: Pablo Torres