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Largest Freight Forwarders in the U.S.

Freight forwarders are a valuable tool in the transportation industry. They find the best deals and routes for your shipments using their trusted connections. Because of this, you can be confident in the company handling your shipment when you’re working with the largest freight forwarders. Whether you have tight deadlines or specified shipment requirements, these freight forwarders are the ones you can rely on to get your shipment where it needs to be.

Quicklook: Largest Freight Forwarders in the US

  • Best For Fast and Competitive Quotes: DHL
  • Best For Tailored Supply Chain Programs: Expeditors International
  • Best For Reducing Downtime: C.H. Robinson
  • Best For Managing Shipments: UPS Supply Chain Solutions 
  • Best For Container Logistics: Maersk

5 Largest US Freight Forwarder Options

The largest freight forwarders in the U.S. have many years of experience in the industry. They have delivered vital freight to many businesses all over the country, and today, you can read all about the five largest U.S. freight forwarder companies in the U.S. 

DHL Supply Chain and Global Forwarding

Founded in 1969, DHL is a world-leading freight forwarding company. DHL employs 380,000 people in a total of 220 countries and territories. Also, DHL helps companies expand their operations and deliver freight across multiple borders. Plus, the company delivers a total of 1.8 billion parcels per year. 

Best For: Fast and Competitive Quotes

Location:

  • Founded in San Francisco, CA
  • Headquartered in Plantation, FL 

Website: https://www.dhl.com 

Revenue: $28.453 billion

Volume: 70,3550,000 metric tons

Number of Employees: 380,000

Employment Types: DHL offers many employment opportunities, with both part-time and full-time options.

  • Delivery drivers
  • Postal workers
  • Warehouse assistants

Services:

  • Express
  • Global Forwarding
  • Freight
  • Supply Chain
  • Ecommerce Solutions
  • Private customer services

Company Benefits:

  • 401(k) plan
  • Maternity and paternity leave
  • Paid vacation 
  • Paid time off
  • Health insurance

Special Features:

  • Global reach and local knowledge
  • Same-day deliveries
  • Sustainable supply chain management 

Expeditors International

Expeditors International is a Seattle-based freight forwarding company. The global logistics company has delivered freight to customers since 1979. Expeditors International helps shippers keep up with the fast-paced nature of the supply chain. The company has more than 350 locations in over 100 countries.

Best For: Tailored Supply Chain Programs

Location: Seattle, Washington

Website: https://www.expeditors.com 

Revenue: $16.5+ billion 

Volume: 27,119,850 metric tons

Number of Employees: Over 19,000 employees

Employment Types: Expeditors International offers many employment opportunities with the choice between part-time and full-time positions. 

  • Global business operations
  • Import
  • Ground network services
  • Order management
  • Transcon services

Services: 

  • Supply chain
  • Transportation
  • Customs and compliance
  • Warehousing and distribution

Company Benefits: 

  • Health care
  • Education reimbursement
  • Paid time off

Special Features:

  • SaaS offerings 
  • Trade management software
  • Curated subsidiaries

C.H. Robinson

C.H. Robinson has experienced success in a tight trucking market, and the company has adapted to global disruptions. Founded in 1905, C.H. Robinson knows what it takes to be competitive, and the company has been a leading innovator in the industry. Over 100,000 companies choose C.H. Robinson for their freight shipping needs, including Microsoft, General Mills and Lowe’s.

Best For: Reducing Downtime

Location: Eden Prairie, Minnesota

Website: https://www.chrobinson.com/en/ 

Revenue: $23+ billion

Volume: 29,025,000 metric tons

Number of Employees: 15,000

Employment Types: C.H. Robinson offers many employment opportunities, ranging from part-time and full-time positions. 

  • Logistics associates
  • Carrier representative
  • Operations
  • Forwarding coordinators
  • Customs entry writers

Services: 

  • Supply chain and logistics
  • Freight services
  • Warehousing
  • Consolidation
  • Temperature-controlled loads

Company Benefits:

  • Health, dental and vision insurance
  • Disability and life insurance
  • Flexible spending account
  • Stock options
  • Equity incentive plan  

Special Features

  • Supply chain consulting 
  • Reduced need for multiple providers 
  • Adaptability to global disruptions 
  • Advanced technology

UPS Supply Chain Solutions

With over 100 years of experience, UPS is one of the most recognizable American brands. As one of the largest freight forwarders in the United States, UPS has been a leader in supply chain management solutions since being founded in 1907. UPS delivers more than 25 million packages per day and serves over 220 countries and territories. UPS has the reach you would expect of a leading freight forwarder. 

Best For: Managing Shipments

Location: Atlanta, Georgia

Website: ​​https://www.ups.com

Revenue: $97.3 billion

Volume: 15,868,880 million metric tons

Number of Employees: 534,000

Employment Types: UPS offers many employment opportunities , with both part-time and full-time positions available. 

  • Warehouse workers
  • Drivers
  • Technicians
  • Dockworkers
  • Hazmat drivers

Services: 

  • Freight distribution
  • Supplier management
  • Freight consolidation
  • Cargo insurance 
  • Financial services
  • Industrial 3D printing

Company Benefits:

  • Flexible hours 
  • Health insurance  
  • Paid vacation 
  • Paid time off 
  • Union protection and pensions  

Special Features:

  • UPS Forwarding Hub
  • Up-to-the-minute customs clearance expertise
  • Market updates

Maersk

Maersk is a Danish company with a strong U.S. presence. This integrated container logistics company has over 100,000 employees in 130 different countries. With an expansive warehouse capacity all over the world, Maersk continues to meet the needs of customers with ease. Maersk offers the industry expertise that is required to ensure that supply chain management is always more than viable. 

Best For: Container Logistics

Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Website: https://www.maersk.com 

Revenue: $61+ billion

Volume: 9,770,942 metric tons

Number of Employees: 100,000+

Employment Types: There are both part-time and full-time options available with Maersk. 

Services:

  • Supply chain management
  • Warehousing and distribution
  • Cargo insurance
  • Value protection 
  • EDI solutions

Company Benefits:

  • Life insurance 
  • Medical care  
  • Retirement savings 
  • Paid vacations and holidays  

Special Features: 

  • Digital solutions
  • Financial services 
  • Extensive routes 

What Is Freight Forwarding?

Freight forwarding services allow freight forwarders to coordinate the storage and shipping of products from one location to another. Freight forwarding companies plan cost-effective transportation routes to save shippers money.

How Does Freight Forwarding Work?

Freight forwarding involves deciphering the best route for freight. Freight forwarders involve single or multiple carriers depending on costs, destination, speed and more. 

Shipping can require various forms of transportation, including ground, air, marine or rail transportation. Some freight forwarding companies will ask LTL truck drivers to bring their cargo to a truck designated as a full truckload. 

Carrying more freight on a full truckload instead of across several LTL trucks reduces costs. Freight forwarders will cover insurance and advise on required documents and transportation rules in specific countries.

What To Consider With Freight Forwarding

Freight forwarding can have many advantages, but not all freight forwarding companies are equal in available services or quality. Before reviewing our considerations, consider your objectives. 

A freight forwarding company may be a great career path for a truck driver. Many businesses utilize freight forwarding companies for cost-effective, high-quality shipping solutions

Transportation

Some supply chain companies ship goods internationally. These companies cannot use freight forwarders that only ship freight by land. 

They need air and marine transportation. Truck drivers are best suited where the freight forwarders provide land transportation services. If a freight forwarder only accepts sea and air transportation, truck drivers should look elsewhere for employment.  

Warehousing and Storage

Warehousing and storage can affect a company’s total incurred costs. There may be cases where you need to store your shipment for either a short or long period of time. 

While the largest freight forwarders will offer both short- and long-term storage solutions, the costs will need to be considered. The longer your cargo stays in storage, the more you’ll pay for the freight forwarding service. 

Network

Freight forwarders tap into networks across the world. The largest freight forwarders will have an expansive network able to meet your needs with ease. 

Review a freight forwarding company’s network and be sure they cover all of your required destinations. Companies primarily use freight forwarders to gain network connections they can’t access on their own.

Customs

Many companies require their freight to be delivered across country borders. Freight forwarders must know and be able to handle specific customs for exporting and importing. This issue isn’t as imperative for companies that only ship goods domestically.

Speed

Some companies need their cargo immediately. Receiving freight a few days late can interrupt business operations, supply chain management and, in turn, the ability to serve clients. 

The largest freight forwarders have networks and locations that improve efficiency and costs. Make sure a freight forwarder can deliver freight on time. There will always be a risk of delays due to weather and events outside of their control. 

Maximize Your Savings With a Leading Freight Forwarder

The largest freight forwarders can generally offer you the most competitive shipping rates that are currently available. This means you can partner with a reliable company while getting cost-effective and dependable shipping solutions. 

Talk about the best of both worlds. Plus, these companies have the industry expertise you need, and they work to ensure that your shipments are transported without any issues. When you want to maximize your savings and minimize the hassle, utilizing freight forwarders is a wise move. 

FAQ

What Does a Freight Forwarder Do?

A freight forwarder is the intermediary that connects a company with a shipment that is in need of transportation. The carrier will then provide shipment services that take the package to the final destination.

Who Is the Largest Freight Forwarder in the World?

DHL is currently the largest freight forwarder globally.

Is Freight Forwarding the Same as Logistics?

While freight forwarders utilize logistics companies, they are not the same.

TAFS is More than Freight Factoring

As one of the industry leaders, TAFS assists trucking companies to increase cash flow with some of the lowest factoring rates in the industry and 1-Hour Advance option.

TAFS is More than Freight Factoring

As one of the industry leaders, TAFS assists trucking companies to increase cash flow with some of the lowest factoring rates in the industry and 1-Hour Advance option.