The Different Types of Freight Transportation

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When it comes to shipping freight, there are many different types of transportation options available. Each type has its own unique features and benefits, and the right choice for your shipment will depend on a variety of factors such as the size and weight of the cargo, the distance it needs to be transported, and any specific handling requirements.

Let's take a closer look at some of the most common types of freight transportation offered by trucking companies like ours:

Dry Van

Dry van shipping is one of the most common types of freight transportation, and it's ideal for transporting dry goods. The cargo is loaded into a sealed trailer, which helps to protect it from moisture and contamination during transit. 

In addition to these general features, there are several different types of dry van trailers that may be appropriate depending on the specific needs of your shipment. For example, you might choose a refrigerated van for transporting perishable goods, or a flatbed van for handling oversized cargo.

Flatbed Trucks

Flatbed trucks are used to transport large, heavy items such as steel beams, construction equipment, and oversized machinery. They have a flat deck that allows for easy loading and unloading of the cargo. 

There are several different types of flatbed trailers available, including standard flatbeds, step-deck trailers (which have steps on one side to allow easier access to the cargo), and drop-deck trailers (which have lower sides to accommodate taller loads).

LTL (Less Than Truckload)

LTL shipping is ideal for small shipments that don't fill up an entire truck, but are still too large to be shipped by parcel carriers like FedEx or UPS. With LTL shipping, your cargo will be loaded onto a shared truck with other shipments, and you'll only pay for the space it takes up.

LTL shipping is generally more cost-effective than full truckload (FTL) shipping, but it may take longer to deliver since the truck will have to make multiple stops to drop off other shipments along the way.

Drayage Transport

Drayage is all about moving goods over short distances, like between ports, warehouses, and distribution centers. Unlike long trips, drayage focuses on moving cargo in a local area or between transportation hubs. 

It's like the middleman in the transportation process, making sure goods get from one place to another smoothly. Drayage needs special equipment and skilled workers to load, unload, and move the cargo efficiently. Because of the tight schedules and deadlines involved, precision and efficiency are key in drayage operations.

Refrigerated Cargo

Refrigerated trucking is used to transport perishable goods such as produce, meat, and dairy products. The cargo is loaded into a refrigerated trailer that maintains a constant temperature to ensure that it stays fresh during transit. 

In addition to these general features, there are several different types of refrigerated trailers available, including single-temperature trailers (which maintain a consistent temperature throughout the trailer), multi-temp trailers (which allow for separate temperature zones for different types of cargo), and insulated trailers (which use an external layer of insulation to keep the trailer cool).

Special Loads 

In addition to the types of freight transportation listed above, many trucking companies also offer specialized services for handling unique or hazardous cargoes. For example, they may have equipment and personnel trained to handle flammable materials, radioactive shipments, or oversized loads that require special permits or equipment. 

Special load services often involve additional safety measures, such as special containment equipment or trained personnel to handle the cargo safely.

At MDS Trucking V, we offer a wide range of freight transportation services to meet all of your shipping needs. Whether you need a dry van, flatbed, LTL, drayage, refrigerated, or special load handling, our experienced team of drivers and logistics experts are here to help you get your goods where they need to go safely and efficiently.


In addition to these general services, we also offer a lease-to-purchase program for qualified drivers who want to become part of the MDS Trucking V team. This program allows drivers to gain valuable experience and build their career while earning a steady income, with the potential to eventually purchase a share of the truck and become an owner-operator.


No matter what type of freight transportation you need, we can help you get your goods where they need to go safely and efficiently. If you're interested in learning more about our services or becoming a driver at MDS Trucking V, please give us a call today or open a live chat session with one of our recruiters. 

We're always looking for dedicated, experienced drivers to join our team!