Logistics Update 

TLI State of Transportation - January 4

January 5, 2021

Written By: Peter Rio


Tight Freight Capacity Expected

to Continue in First Half of 2021


Heading into 2021, the transportation industry continues to face one of its greatest challenges to date; overcoming severe staffing issues as a result of the rising cases of COVID accompanied by a thriving economy.

LTL Weekly Summary:

COVID-19 related staffing issues continue to be the number one challenge facing LTL carriers, as they struggle to keep healthy employees at work moving shipments. While working through these significant staffing issues, LTL carriers remain extremely busy as shipper demand has held steady. Carrier pricing departments are remaining conservative taking on new business, especially in areas of the country where they are already struggling to keep up with shipper demand such as southern CA.


Truckload Weekly Summary:

Overall spot market truckload activity dropped off considerably the last week of 2020. A large portion of truckload carrier capacity was unavailable around the holidays, as many drivers headed home to spend time with their families. Shippers with urgent holiday- week shipments paid spot market premiums to move freight last week.

Truckload capacity continues to be tight as we head into 2021 and is projected to remain that way through the first two quarters of the year, keeping elevated freight rates in place for the foreseeable future.


International Ocean/Air Weekly Summary:

Port and international carrier capacity simply cannot expand fast enough to meet the growing demand from global shippers. Rates continue to rise just as fast as quotes can be given. It is critical to quickly lock in international spot market capacity at quoted rates, since rates can change at the flip of a coin in the current unprecedented market environment. Many bookings are being pushed out and delayed, simply due to the lack of carrier capacity to move the goods.


Other Key Weekly Updates:


Many LTL carriers continue to report severe challenges with capacity in Southern CA. The extreme shipper demand accompanied by the increase in international related shipments continues to overwhelm carrier terminals in this area.

E-Commerce demand continues to create challanges for UPS, FedEx, and USPS as many holiday shipments were not delivered on-time. Shippers such as Amazon continue to create solutions to deliver their small package shipments quickly within their own networks versus utilizing outsourced transportation providers.


It is critical 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.

Your team at Translogistics will continue providing you with weekly updates throughout the current unprecedented capacity crunch. Please be assured, poor carrier services levels and delayed shipments are not specific to your account rather an industry-wide problem we are all facing together right now. This tough market environment is expected to continue through the first two quarters of 2021.

We encourage you to continue to check our Translogistics Blog regularly, as we will be posting industry or carrier updates as we receive them.



Your Team at Translogistics



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