TL is the transportation of large amounts of homogeneous cargo, generally the amount necessary to fill an entire semi-trailer or intermodal container (refrigerated). A truckload carrier is a trucking company that generally contracts an entire trailer-load to a single customer. This is as opposed to a less than truckload (LTL) company that generally mixes freight from several customers in each trailer. One advantage Full Truckload (FTL) carriers have over Less than Truckload carriers is that the freight is never handled en route, whereas an LTL shipment will typically be transported on several different trailers. As with LTL, TL should also be packaged or loaded onto pallets for unit loads. Sturdy shipping containers such as crates or corrugated fiberboard boxes are commonly used .
A typical full truckload for a dry van trailer consists of 24 standard pallets of cargo that weighs up to 42,000 lbs. (or more).