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What is Road Freight?

Martha Lott

Written by

2nd Sep 2022 (Last updated on 27th Feb 2024) 4 minute read

When moving abroad, you’ll have to think about how you want your goods to be shipped. Two of the most discussed transport services are ocean and air freight. However, for those embarking on a European move, you can choose road freight transport.

Knowing the advantages and disadvantages of road freight will allow you to make a fully informed decision as to whether it is best for you.

Compare My Move has comprised this guide to let you know everything about road freight. By the end of the article, you’ll feel confident in making a decision.

  1. What is Road Freight?
  2. Advantages and Disadvantages of Road Freight
  3. Methods of Road Freight
  4. Road Freight Transit Times
  5. Road Freight Logistics
  6. Finding an International Removal Company
Road Freight Costs

Here is a table with the average road freight costs per pallet with the transit times:

CountryCost Estimate Per PalletTransit Time
£2893-4 days
£231Up to a week
£2993-4 days
£3023-5 days
£2552 days
£1011-2 days
£2902-3 days
£2171-2 days
£3251-3 days
£3133-4 days
£2071-4 days
£3542-3 days

This data has been collected from Pallet 2 Ship and National Pallets.

What is Road Freight?

Road freight means that goods are transported from one country to another via a truck. Thanks to the excellent road network between European countries, this is possible for European moves from the UK.

With the ability to transport large and heavy goods such as motor vehicles, the costs of road freight are calculated by space rather than weight. The main advantage of road freight is that it is the cheapest mode of transport.

This option also means that you receive door to door service. The truck will pick up the goods directly from your current home and then drop them off at your new home. This makes it ideal for international removals.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Road Freight

As with all modes of transport, there are advantages and disadvantages that you should know about. Before making your decision, you want to make sure that you are confident when transporting goods.

Here are the advantages and disadvantages that you need to consider:

Advantages of road freight

  • It is cheaper than ocean and air freight
  • The trucks can travel long distances, making them suitable for European moves
  • You can choose to hire a full truck or a portion of a truck

Disadvantages of road freight

  • It takes longer for your goods to arrive

Methods of Road Freight

As mentioned above, you can choose how much space in the truck you want to use. This is ideal for those who may be working with a stricter budget or embarking on a smaller move. You can choose between a full truckload or a part load.

Full Truck Load

A full truckload, also known as dedicated service, is when the truck or vehicle is only carrying your belongings. This is the best choice for those who are embarking on a larger move. This is because those with larger or heavier belongings will need to consider hiring a full vehicle.

Your items will be packed at your home and loaded into a vehicle to be taken directly to your new home in Europe. Full truckloads are more expensive because you have hired the entire space and it will arrive faster.

Part Load

The second option is part load which is best for small or temporary moves such as student movers. This means that you are assigned a portion of the vehicle’s space and the rest is filled with other people’s belongings. This is also called shared load service and is a cheap option making it great for those on a strict budget.

The downside is that part load takes a long time because the vehicle may have to stop at other locations along the way. Because road freight is a door to door service, this means that you could be waiting a while, especially if there are delays.

Road Freight Transit Times

The amount of time road freight takes to arrive can vary depending on an array of factors. These include:

  • Your final destination
  • Whether you choose a full truckload or part load

For example, if you are moving to a nearby country such as Ireland, it could take as little as a day if you take a full truckload. However, part load packages to countries that are further afield could take up to 2 weeks. This is because the vehicle will have to stop along the way and there is a higher chance of delays.

Road Freight Logistics

When transporting goods by road freight, you need to make sure that the goods are packaged securely and remain within the pallet. Most removal companies provide a packing service, so you can have peace of mind. Make sure that your belongings stay within the allotted pallet space you have been assigned.

While your goods will remain in the vehicle, the vehicle may have to be stored on a ferry or train in order to get to mainland Europe. Thanks to Europe’s strong road and rail networks, your belongings can be shipped from door to door in a matter of days.

The more prepared you are in terms of packaging your goods, the less chance there is of delays when going through customs.

Finding an International Removal Company

At Compare My Move, we have a network of international removal partners who are able to assist you with your road freight move. Whether you are moving to a nearby country or somewhere further afield, you’ll be able to find the best company for you.

Martha Lott

Written by Martha Lott

Having guest authored for many property websites, Martha now researches and writes articles for everything moving house related, from remortgages to conveyancing costs.

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