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6 ways to optimize your logistics with multimodal transport

    Multimodal transport is a process of moving cargo in a single container from door to door by combining different modes of transportation (road, sea, or rail). In the following article by Unifeeder, we discuss 6 ways multimodal transport can optimize your logistics

    What is multimodal transportation?

    Multimodal transportation is a process of moving cargo in a single container from door to door by combining land transport (road or rail) and maritime or river transport (vessel or barge) in one transportation chain.

    Multimodal transportation

    By switching to multimodal transportation you get the best of both worlds. Sea freight gives you security, scalability, and economic efficiency while freight via road and rail lets you reach rural areas.

    6 ways to optimize logistics through multimodal transport

    1. Increase reliability

    Choose open waters not congested roads

    2. Achieve great savings

    Competitive pricing, customized solutions

    3. Reduced cargo loss

    Caused by theft, damage or contamination

    4. Scale your capacity

    Based on demand fluctuations

    5. Plan your deliveries

    Up to 7 days free storage

    6. Choose the green solution

    Lower your company´s CO2 emissions by up to 60%

    1. Increase reliability

    Choose open waters not congested roads

    Before the outbreak of COVID-19, the European Union was facing a shortage of almost 150,000 truck drivers making it one of the top 10 most difficult positions to fill. Recent safety regulations, border closures, and high congestion on roads, plus the regulations limiting the number of hours drivers can be on the road, have only worsened the crunch.

    While traditional road transport is facing more issues than ever before, sea transport remains fully operational. At Uni- feeder, we have access to the most extensive multimodal network in Europe, which allows us to move your cargo using the best combination of sea, rail, and road. That way, we can plan a smart and flexible logistic solution which helps you to avoid bottlenecks and border crossings and get your cargo to its destination on time.

    2. Achieve great savings

    Great savings

    A single vessel can transport the equivalent of 700 truck- loads. Large-scale operations and efficient utilization of vessels enable highly competitive prices while allowing for flexible, door-to-door solutions. Therefore, multimodal is a cost-effective alternative to traditional road transport.

    3. Reduce cargo loss

    When opting for a multimodal solution most of the transport distances are conducted by sea, where cargo is far better protected, being safely stored on a vessel than on a trailer at a congested, and easy accessible highway.

    At sea, your cargo is moved in sealed, steel containers from door-to-door without any handling of the cargo in between. Thereby you lower the risk of contamination and loss of your cargo as you reduce the human touchpoints along the ride.

    Top commodities stolen in 2019

    Source: Cargo Theft Trends 2019 by bsi. Supply Chain Exposure Evaluation Network

    Additionally, our containers can be equipped with high security seals which are stronger and more difficult to tamper with.

    4. Scale your capacity

    Many companies lack the ability to scale logistics operations in response to varying demands throughout the year. Whether you need to reduce cargo flow, increase volume, or add new drop- off locations, multimodal has the ability to scale far better than trucks.

    Scale your capacity

    Due to the size of our vessel fleet, many containers, extensive European network, and multiple sailings per week, you will be able to quickly adapt the flows in order to cope with last-minute orders, changes, or delays by adding or rerouting cargo on an
    as-needed basis.

    Think of it this way: If you want to move 10 additional truckloads, from Rotterdam to Saint Petersburg, and you want to be time-efficient, you need to hire 10 new trucks and 10 new truck drivers. When using multimodal you can use one driver, who makes short trips from the warehouse to the port. The rest of the trip is done on a vessel, which can fit up to 700 containers.

    5. Plan your deliveries

    With multimodal you have access to storage options for empty and loaded containers at highly protected terminals around Europe. If you are not ready to deliver your cargo or have no space to store it at your facilities, you can get up to 7 days of free storage at departure and arrival ports. This makes it easy for you to have an overview of your supply chain and make sound decisions to deliver just-in-time.

    Business as usual
    A 45’’ container can hold exactly the same amount of cargo as a  traditional trailer 

    6. Choose the green solution

    Lower your company´s CO2 emissions by up to 60%

    Shipping containers by sea provides a greener alternative to conventional, overland transport with significantly smaller CO2 emissions per tonne/kilometer carried. Thus multimodal transport can contribute tremendously to reducing the carbon footprint of European transportation.

    Choose the green solution

    One vessel can remove as much
    as 700 truckloads from the European roads.
    By choosing multimodal transportation, you can make a valuable contribution to general safety on the roads, emission footprint, and working conditions for the people involved in your supply chain.

    Source: Unifeeder