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Driving Cost Savings with Intermodal and Transload

Freight can follow any number of potential paths while moving inland from global points of entry. Because the global supply chain relies on the safe and timely delivery of products, J.B. Hunt transload and intermodal services work in tandem to make your freight shipping experience efficient and cost-effective. 

Moving International Imports

Many times, international imports move from ports of entry to inland point intermodal (IPI). IPI involves transferring an intact container, typically a 40’ ocean container, to the rail for inland movement. But we know there’s a better solution to streamline the inland logistics process.

J.B. Hunt’s transload service and our industry-leading intermodal offerings can move the same freight at competitive rates – and can consistently get the products to their destination faster than IPI.

We consolidate freight into company-owned 53-foot containers at our transload facilities, then send them outbound via rail or truck. For example, by consolidating three 40’ containers into two of our 53’ containers, we’re able to move more of your freight to its destination and save you time and money. 

Intermodal Versus IPI 

IPI has multiple points of contact across providers which means less control of the process and results in slower speeds and higher inventory carrying costs. But J.B. Hunt leverages our own people and equipment, which adds more control to the process and leads to lower inventory carrying costs and means pivoting from rail to truck or vice versa is easy. Our customers can then use this speed to market, economics of container consolidation and the reliability of the service to manage their costs.  

Let’s consider a sample shipment from Qingdao, China, to the port in Tacoma, Washington, to a warehouse in Chicago, Illinois, to see the differences between the two methods.

The days spent on an ocean vessel are consistent between the two at 16-18 days. It’s when the shipment arrives at port that the numbers start to change: 

The Solution You Need 

Using our intermodal services gives you preferred access to rail connections and the largest company-owned domestic container fleet. This international import solution provides a cost-effective and time-saving way to get your products where you need them. 

Contact us to learn how shipping international freight with J.B. Hunt can help save you time and money.