How to Calculate Transport Charges

by John London; Updated September 26, 2017
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Transporting goods within and outside the United States can incur additional charges, which you need to be aware of when buying goods online, sending gifts to friends or transporting your own belongings. Transportation charges vary, depending on the shipping or trucking company you are sending the goods with, the value of the shipment, delivery time and, obviously, the destination. Additional options to consider include whether you are shipping hazardous materials or you need an arrival notification.

Step 1

Determine the parameters of the shipment. These include the destination, the packaging and weight of the shipment and its freight class. Freight class is determined by the density of the freight. Calculate freight class by multiplying the length of the object by its width and height, measured in inches. This will be the volume of the shipment. Convert it into cubic feet by dividing by 1,728. Then divide the shipment's weight, measured in pounds by its volume, measured in cubic feet. The resulting value will constitute the shipment's density, measured in pounds per cubic foot. Use the chart below to find out the corresponding freight class.

50 = class 55 30 = class 60 22.5 = class 65 15 = class 70 13.5 = class 77.5 12 = class 92.5 9 = class 100 8 = class 110 7 = class 125 6 = class 150 5 = class 200 3 = class 250 2 = class 300 1 = class 400 >1 = class 500

Step 2

Visit websites of shipping companies, such as UPS or Old Dominion. Navigate to the shipping costs estimation pages.

Step 3

Enter the shipping parameters you identified in Step 1. In addition, specify whether you are using options such as delivery to doorstep, insurance costs (if you want the shipment insured) and arrival notification.

Step 4

Click "Submit" or "Next" and get an estimate of what the transportation charges will be for your shipment.

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