Is it better to use only one type of transport or to move loads through more than one? For intermodal transport the answer is: more than two types.

Intermodal transport is an excellent option to save costs and to have other benefits, however, it has a competition, multimodal transport that claims to have the same advantages.

What is intermodal transport?

Intermodal transportation moves different cargoes through two or more modes of transportation such as planes, ships, trucks, and rail. Usually this type of transport moves cargo through containers.

When combining different styles of transport, optimal routes have to be drawn from the beginning with treatment between different providers and among the most popular are:
● Road with rail: to transport boxes and containers within the same territorial space.
● Road with sea: Most of the transport is by ship, but road unloading may occur in the process.
● Railway with maritime, many trains reach the most important ports, making it an excellent option to transport large goods.

In addition, this transport is recommended for high-cost or very large-volume products.

Advantages of intermodal transport

Costs are reduced, since a load can be transported by train for long journeys and by truck for short ones, which offers greater cost flexibility.

This type of transport offers security as the containers are scanned along the entire route, no matter if it is on a ship, a truck or a train.

Loads have less excessive handling, which protects contents from loss and damage.
Another point in favor of intermodal transport is that it reduces the environmental impact.

Since according to Inbound Logistics, using railways reduces the use of fuel, which lowers the emission of polluting gases.

Disadvantages of intermodal transport

● May be slower compared to other types of transportation
● In Mexico there is a lack of infrastructure to make intermodal transport more efficient
● We seek to pack the products to avoid damage due to loading and unloading of the products.
What is the difference with multimodal transport?
Multimodal transport has the same characteristics as intermodal with the difference that at a regulatory and legal level it is easier to move the products through multimodal transport, this is because instead of having several contracts with the different carriers in multimodal it is a single contract. .

It is also said that the transfer times can be faster, but it depends on the infrastructure of the country and the setbacks that occur due to the weather or customs.