Low availability in northbound loads: can we reduce its impact?

 In Business, Shipping to Mexico, Supply chain & Logistics

Low availability in northbound freight loads across North America can impact the Mexican shippers that need to export their merchandise to the U.S. and Canada. In this post, you will find the reasons for this problem and some recommendations to decrease its impact on your supply chain.

What are the reasons for this low availability?

The principal reason for this freight imbalance that is targeting the 3PLs in the last years is the driver shortage. This subject has already been reviewed in the blog and will be a worry for the rest of the year.

Driver’s retirements are more frequent every day since most of them are above 40 years old. This adds to the fact that only a few young people want to work in trucking since this generation finds other kinds of jobs more attractive and approachable.

Another matter is that job requirements in the industry are harder than they used to be. Especially in Mexico, where it is hard to attract drivers due to poor labor conditions and road insecurity. This situation makes carriers limit their lanes to the U.S. and Canada. Also, it is important to outline that their workforce is yet to be diverse since it is mostly integrated by men.

Covid-19 effects in freight transportation

The Covid-19 pandemic deepened the driver shortage because of mobility restrictions, the increase in local deliveries, and new regulations to the border crossing. It also made bottlenecks in ports, an imbalance on containers, and raised spot rates. Because of this, the import/export rate from Mexico to the U.S. and Canada grew.

Change your point of view in order to face the low availability for northbound loads 

First, to face the problem of low availability for northbound loads, you need to change your point of view; the freight imbalance between north and south has become the new normal, and it is better to think on long-term strategies and reduce its impact.

The spotlight should be on planning. Shipments must be scheduled way in advance to secure transportation and avoid being surprised by the lack of availability. It is advisable to consider more days around the delivery date in case you face a setback. Also, you must have a wide and reliable supplier network that can help you to avoid or solve any problem.

Additional to this, you must analyze all transportation options to allow clients to choose the one that seems more adequate to solve its business requirements.  You can choose an LTL (Less Than Truck Load) or transshipment, for example, since this kind of transportation has more availability and better prices.

Lastly, you must avoid any paperwork issues and aim for better processes that allow you to promote shipment efficiency. For this purpose, you must have all paperwork updated and in order.

In these blog posts, you will be able to find information related to rates and all the paperwork you need to cross your load through the border of an FTL  or LTL. We can help you by explaining all the processes and avoiding that your freight gets delayed with administrative mishaps and damaged procedures.





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