Translogistics Blog

Carriers Continue to Work Through Backlogs of Freight and Record Levels of Shipper Demand

March 23, 2021

Written By: Peter Rio

TLI's Weekly State of Transportation Update

Week of March 22, 2021


With end of month/end of quarter quickly approaching, we encourage all of our clients to attempt to get as many shipments out this week since missed pickups, shipment delays, and capacity issues will only be exacerbated heading into next week.


LTL Weekly Summary:

Carriers continue to work to get caught up on backlogs of freight, attempting to clean out their networks to get service levels back on track as we head into Spring. We are not hearing of any end in sight for the extremely tight LTL capacity and record level of demand from shippers. LTL missed pickups and late deliveries continue to trend at record high levels, with an average of 45% of non-guaranteed standard LTL shipments being delayed at least one day of transit.

Rising diesel fuel costs are continuing to increase overall freight rates, which are already heightened due to carrier pricing increases. Average LTL carrier increases are trending between 6% and 10% on annual renewals.


Truckload & Intermodal Weekly Summary:

Truckload spot rates continue to be extremely volatile, with many markets demanding freight rates simply unforeseen in the past. Demand for a last-minute truckload booking is extremely high causing capacity to be scarce, as shippers compete to get last minute product fresh off the production line shipped that same day to complete backordered shipments. We encourage all our clients to attempt to plan in advance as much as possible for truckload and intermodal shipments, as same-day/next-day truckloads and intermodals as extremely expensive right now.

Intermodal service remains inconsistent, with many shipments experiencing transit delays at the pickup or delivery side due to drayage carriers being backed up.


International Weekly Summary:

International ocean imports continue to create severe frustration for shippers, as booking availability is extremely scarce and often weeks out from the request date. Transit time delays and port congestion are only worsening the situation, as shippers continue to pay record high prices for record low service levels.

These ocean import delays have forced many shippers to result to record high air freight rates to bring desperately needed import goods to their facilities in a timely manner. TLI suggests that on any international shipments you provide our team with the “Must Arrive by Date” (MABD) as to when you need the product delivered, which will help us select the proper routing at the best possible freight rate.


It is important, more than ever before, that you provide your TLI team with as much notice and flexibility as possible on any freight you may need to move in order to allow us to book the best carrier option at the best rate.

Providing our operations team with a MABD (must arrive by date) will allow them to secure the most cost-effective option for each shipment.


Please contact your Translogistics team at 610-280-3210 for any further questions. 

*article written by Peter Rio, Director of Logistics, Translogistics. Any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out!


Translogistics' Industry Chart of the Week

China to US West Coast Ocean Rates

China to US West Coast Ocean Rates (Red Line is 2021)

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