Make sure you choose the correct freight shipping class!

Shipping freight classes involve classifying the items being shipped. There are 18 different freight classes defined by the National Motor Freight Traffic Association (NMFTA). They begin at 50 pounds and go up to 500 pounds. The class for freight shipping is determined by the density, stowability, handling, and the liability of the item being shipped. Let’s take a look at how these classes are determined, why using a freight class calculator is important, and why it’s crucial for your company to choose the correct one ..


This is determined by the weight and the dimensions of the item. The shipping will go by pound per cubic foot. The higher the density of the item the lower the class it will be. Heavy freight will not take up as much space compared to the weight which will allow carriers to put more items on their truck. This means a lower shipping cost to customers.


This is a more complicated term but it deals with the relation of an item to other items. For example, if the item being shipped is hazardous it cannot be shipped with other items and special precautions may need to be taken. It will also take more time to load these items and extra care is needed.


Handling will look at how much manpower it is going to take to loan and to unload the item from the beginning destination to the end. If an item is large, fragile, or packing makes it difficult to handle there is going to be a higher charge.


This is the probability that the item being shipped may become damaged. It also looks at the chance of it being stolen or damaged by other items that are being shipped.

How Prices are Calculated

The lower the class the item fits into, the lower the price will be. This means it is easy to handle and transport. Items that weigh less and are not hazardous or fragile have the lowest price.

When a business is shipping their freight they should be aware of the different classes and what is used to determine the class. You can search for the online shipping comparison platforms like and can inquire from the most suitable bidder about the class it uses. This will help them set money aside for shipping and will help make sure they have this money in the budget. Finally, if you incorrectly classify your freight, you could face extra charges … so using a freight class calculator is key!

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