In Partnership With


A Freight Exchange is an online real time website service which allows carriers to communicate freight traffic information to fellow operators such as transporters, forwarders and logistics companies. They allow forwarders to advertise their freight either privately or publicly to a large number of freight operators that are looking for loads. Online systems are normally subscription-based with a small charge for advertising (posting) and searching (consulting). There are now a limited number of Freight Exchanges which are free to register with, or who offer free trial subscriptions.

Freight exchanges have different charging mechanisms. Most will charge a “membership” fee whilst some charge a percentage of the agreed charge for the delivery. Most freight exchanges require that all users register and complete some form of registration that includes agreeing to a set of terms and conditions. These terms and conditions are in place to protect both hauliers and those wanting loads to be delivered and ordinarily include payment terms and a dispute resolution process.

Overview of the Trial

The purpose of the Freight Exchange trial as part of the North East Freight Partnership is to try and increase load sharing on vehicles travelling to and from the North East of England.

This will be done by the Partnership funding five subscriptions for the limited duration of the trial. The trial will operate for one year in two six month blocks. The chosen Freight Exchange used for the purposes of the trial is the UK wide service of Haulage Exchange.

Details at: www.haulageexchange.co.uk/

It is perceived that the operational benefits to the hauliers involved in the trial will include:
  • Free use of a Freight Exchange for the limited period of trial
  • Potential to increase load fill on vehicles travelling to and from the NE
  • Enhanced networking in looking for more business
  • Increased opportunities for backloading
  • Reducing empty running
  • Helping to establish more cost effective fleet management

A reporting mechanism has been arranged with the Freight Exchange which enables total spend of Tyne and Wear hauliers, deliveries and collections, mileage saved and CO2 savings to be monitored. This will allow the impact in the regions GVA, overall road mileage and freight related CO2 emissions to be monitored which will allow the ultimate success of the scheme to be determined.

It is evident that Freight Exchanges continue to play an important role in freight operations and that there is a wealth of options and opportunities for operators to exploit. It was also clear that the majority of operators tend to have already investigated and used freight exchanges to some extent and that once good working relationships had been formed that the exchanges have been an invaluable part of their daily operating environment. It is simply the matter of finding the most suitable exchange for their operations. Importantly an operator must carefully take into account the cost of on-going subscription against the profits made from loads subcontracted and collected as only one of the operators taking part in the trial is planning to continue to use the system. For full report click here.