Accessorial charges are fees added to a freight bill for additional, a la carte services that the carrier might provide for their customers (shippers). While some accessorials are included in the Rate Confirmation, there are additional accessorials that are not added until the conclusion of the shipment. These types of extra charges are typically added to the freight bill once the delivery has been completed. This can sometimes make it difficult to understand just what to expect for additional charges. The following list is of common accessorial charges in the industry, as well as examples of when they may be charged.
Common Accessorial Charges
Lumper or Driver Load/Unload
Assisting with loading or unloading freight is outside of the general job requirements for drivers, so if a load requires driver assistance an additional fee can be charged. A lumper fee is charged in instances where 3rd party workers are used to unload shipments at warehouses and the labor costs are charged to the shipper.
Tarps are commonly used on flatbeds to protect freight from the elements and typically have additional fees for shippers because tarps cost money to have and to use. Tarps are heavy and setting them up takes time and labor. Time is money!
Truck Ordered Not Used or TONU (“Tow-New” or “Ton-U”) refers to a charge that is paid when a truck is ordered but later cancelled after a pre-established cut-off time.
Still speaking of time… When a driver is stuck waiting to load or unload freight at a set location, and more time has passed than what is reasonable or customary, they can charge hourly detention fees depending on how long they’re held beyond that. Generally, it is understood that loading/unloading can take up to a maximum of 2 hours depending on the type of freight. However, if the process is longer than that, drivers will charge the additional detention fees.
Layover fees are charged when a shipment cannot be loaded or unloaded on the originally planned day and transit days are increased. This charge is common when information about appointment times is incorrect, or the product is not ready to be shipped or received. Whatever the circumstance, drivers will charge a per day layover fee for any extended transit/load days.
Demurrage occurs when costs are incurred for using equipment when loaded cargo containers are left at a port for too long. Demurrage is charged on a per day basis when? full containers are not picked up by the consignee. Demurrage is a bit different than detention because it usually refers to port cargo.
Deadhead occurs when a truck is traveling with empty trailers from their origin to the pickup location. Not all brokers or carriers charge for deadhead miles, but some will add these costs into the rate if the truck must travel long distances with an empty trailer.
If a driver must participate in the loading or unloading of goods and go past the dock at either delivery or pickup, then an “Inside Delivery” (or Pickup) charge can be applied to the freight bill. Drivers do not have to physically deliver the goods all the way inside a building for this charge to be added.
Whether due to an incorrect address, inaccurate receiving hours, insufficient staff availability to unload a truck, or whatever reason, redelivery will be charged in instances where delivery can’t be completed the first time. Redelivery fees can be pricey, as they force the driver to do the job again.
Reclassification and reweigh fees typically occur more often with LTL loads. LTL shipments are quoted based on the weight dimensions and the classification of goods; however, this information isn’t always initially accurate. Fitting LTL loads into a trailer is a bit like playing a game of Tetris, and the specifications of the load can’t be off or all other loads on the shipment or trailer can be disrupted. Fees are charged to compensate LTL carriers for adjusting their shipments and manifests to accommodate the loads.
Extra straps, edge protectors, and blankets wraps are examples of common special equipment that drivers might have to use to transport loads safely and securely. The fees associated with special equipment vary depending on the types of equipment and how much is being used.
A liftgate is a piece of equipment that is installed near the rear of trailers and allows freight to be lifted from the ground to the height of the tailgate. The hydraulic, sometimes electric, equipment makes the trailer heavier, adding weight to the gross vehicle weight.
Liftgates are a good option when moving freight to receivers without shipping docks or forklifts. An example of using a liftgate would be when new furniture is delivered to residential homes.
Fuel surcharges are fees that primarily cover fluctuations in the cost of the diesel fuel a driver uses to haul a load. These fees are billed to shippers in addition to the rate for hauling the freight. Trucking companies benefit from fuel surcharge programs because they can compensate their drivers for fuel expenses.
Sort and Segregate Service
Shippers can request an audit to make sure all the goods in a shipment made it to the destination safely. This service can require multiple personnel and detention with extra costs that must be paid for, making it a complicated service. Additionally, sort and seg fees can be applied to shipments that need to be sorted onto multiple pallets and counted.
Additional stop charges are applied when drivers have multiple pickup locations or delivery addresses. The number of stops can affect the amount of fees the shipper/customer will have to pay to have the freight delivered.
Storage fees, which are charged by the hour or day, can be added when shippers need to store their goods before or during the trip. Storage fees might also be incurred if a load must be redelivered on a different day (see redelivery above).
If the shipment is heavier, wider, taller, or longer than the state specified legal limit, shippers will have to pay additional fees charged by the carrier for permitting the transport of the load. Some extremely oversized loads may require vehicle escort services which are an additional charge.
Hazardous materials are more difficult to transport and require special endorsements from the Department of Transportation. Usually, carriers are notified beforehand that the load is hazmat and additional fees will be added into the total freight rate. If drivers are unaware of a load being hazmat until they arrive at pickup additional charges can be expected then (e.g., TONU).
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