The months of November and December always represent the trucking industry’s busiest season, but will motor carriers and freight brokers be able to keep up with the demand? The last few years have brought improved U.S. employment and increased retail spending, two trends that predict tight capacity during the pre-Christmas freight rush.
This is a time of year when the shortage of drivers and the “graying” of the industry takes its toll on freight movement. With fewer young people choosing trucking as a career and the average age of a driver reaching into the mid-50s, capacity will be affected. Added to the existing shortfall in drivers is the projection that ELD (electronic logging devices) requirements will push out struggling motor carriers that needed to exceed hours of service limits to turn a profit. The effect of the ELD mandate could be significant.
The holiday shipping challenges come on top of a season of devastating fall hurricane losses that kept trucks on the road delivering construction supplies, furniture and household goods, clothing, cars – everything needed to replace what was lost after record-breaking weather disasters.
The good news is that the capacity crunch will bring higher rates from shippers and freight brokers. The high demand for motor carriers during the holiday crunch increases rates per mile for motor carriers. This is a time when motor carriers need to rely on as many sources as possible for staying loaded and earning more.
Online load boards represent important resources for truckers. Some load boards charge expensive subscription fees, but FreeFreightSearch.com, the world’s largest free load board lets motor carriers search for loads and post their trucks at no charge. With more loads than ever showing up on FreeFreightSearch.com, the holidays are a good time to get sign up.