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Logistics 101: Terms You Need to Know

Posted on: October 10, 2023

Like many industries, logistics is full of jargon! Understanding key logistics terms will help you communicate with other industry professionals and request the right logistics services for your company’s needs.

Freight Rate

A freight rate is the price of transporting a load from point A to point B. The rate you’re quoted is primarily dependent on supply and demand, the cargo type and distance your load needs to travel. 

With our three decades of experience and close relationships with partner carriers, Classic Logistics can offer our customers competitive freight rates even in markets where capacity is down.


Capacity refers to a logistics company’s available resources, like trucks and trained drivers, to service a certain route or lane. In other words, they can transport your load from one specific location to another and meet customer demand for that lane. 

Because we’re an asset-based logistics provider and broker at Classic Carriers, we have more control over scheduling and can adjust capacity to meet customer needs. We have our own fleet of vehicles and work with strictly-vetted partner carriers to service the contiguous 48 states and Canada. 


Lanes are specific routes or transportation corridors between the origin of a load and its destination. Atlanta to Chicago is one example of a popular lane. (You might even hear logistics professionals call these common lanes “gravy lanes.”) Your carrier will consider things like distance, fuel costs, demand, weather and traffic congestion when providing a quote for transporting your load on a certain lane. 

Not all logistics companies provide capacity in all lanes. At Classic Carriers, we’re committed to getting your load where it needs to go, even on less common lanes. 

Third-Party Logistics (3PL)

Third-party logistics, or 3PL, refers to companies that offer outsourced logistics services, transportation and warehousing to businesses. Outsourcing logistics to 3PLs offers a cost-effective way for companies to scale their operations and increase their competitiveness in the marketplace while focusing on what they do best. 

Classic Logistics offers full-service 3PL, including a complete suite of transportation services with our warehousing and carrier capabilities.

Cold Chain

Cold chain or cold chain logistics refers to a specialized supply chain for temperature-sensitive goods. This might include refrigerated foods, frozen foods and pharmaceuticals that require cold transportation and storage. 

At Classic, we provide refrigerated trucking in temperature-controlled trailers that can haul products as low as minus 20 degrees. We also have a cold storage warehouse with more than 2.3 million cubic feet of food-grade frozen storage, including a separate cooler room and chilled dock

Reefer Trailer

“Reefer trailer” is a shortened term for “refrigerated trailer.” These types of trailers are used for transporting temperature-sensitive goods. Reefer trailers come equipped with a refrigeration unit and insulation to maintain certain temperature conditions inside the trailer. Reefers are commonly used to transport items like:

  • Fresh produce
  • Frozen foods
  • Dairy products
  • Florals
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Chemicals

Our temperature-controlled trailers at Classic Carriers have a 100-degree temperature range and include a thermal barrier to haul different temperature products at the same time.

How is Classic Logistics different from other 3PLs? Get your guide


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