Intermodal FAQs

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RailGateway Intermodal Freight Shipping Most Commonly Asked Questions

Your Account with RailGateway

Is there a fee to use an intermodal service?

Absolutely not! No time commitment. No hidden fees. Pay as you go for all your domestic intermodal shipping needs! 

How do I set up an account?

Creating an intermodal rail account is super simple, you simply fill in a credit application agreeing to our net 15-day terms, and once approved voila, start shipping!

What payment methods do you accept?

RailGateway accepts EFT and Credit Card payments for your intermodal shipments.

Our Rail Intermodal Shipping Offer

Which rail companies do you have discounts with?

RailGateway works directly with both Canadian National Railway Company (CN) and Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) for domestic intermodal shipment services.

What if I already have an account with one of these carriers?

No worries! We have strategic partnerships with all supply chain intermodal providers in Canada and we always ensure that there’s no conflict of interest.

What destination do you cover with your intermodal transport services?

RailGateway services the entire Canadian intermodal transportation network including points North, South, East and West.

Our rail partners can also take your shipment from and to the U.S., with final destinations Memphis, TN and Chicago, IL and along those whole paths.

Have a look at the major intermodal terminals in Canada you can on our blog and explore your possibilities!

Is there a minimum shipping requirement to get these low rates?

Nope! We support small, medium, and large businesses. No matter what size of organization you are in, we will always guarantee the lowest price for all your full load intermodal transportation rail needs.

Are there cut off times for submitting orders?

Intermodal transportation cut-off times are 2 pm the previous workday, ie. 2 pm Monday for Tuesday pick up.

Your Cargo Shipments

What kind of shipments can I book using this service?

RailGateway offers full load 53′ and 40′ intermodal transportation services across Canada coast to coast or across the border into the US via the Mississippi corridor railway. We can pick up from any dock/port going to any dock for all railroad freight.

Do you offer “drop” trailers?

Yes! Depending upon location, most city centers offer a 24-hour drop at the origin and destination free of charge for intermodal transportation. Please confirm when booking.

How many containers can I book?

At RailGateway, your needs are our priority!

We can ship large or small shipments and fit them into our regular scheduled containers. When asking for a quote, make sure you mention how many containers you might need.

What type of cargo do you haul?

We ship any dry merchandise or cargo. From boxes to loose cargo, we can ship anything non-perishable, that doesn’t require temperature control.

Please note that we do not ship personal belongings or refrigerated products.

How do I track my shipment?

You will receive a daily status report that displays every detail of your intermodal transportation shipment from pick up and delivery locations, appointments, container #’s, drops, where your container is in transit.

With us, track all of your railroad freight in one simple spot!

Understanding Intermodal Shipping

What is meant by an intermodal shipment?

An intermodal shipment is when one item or cargo travels by more than one type of transportation during the journey while staying in the same intermodal container.

For example, in order to reach the final destination, the container might be moved by rail than by ship, or by ship than by truck, or for the most common case in domestic shipments, truck to train to truck.

At RailGateway, we specialize in the rail long haul part of intermodal shipments. If you want to know more about intermodal shipping, make sure to read our related blog post.

What is the difference between rail shipping and intermodal shipping?

Simply put, intermodal means that two or more different types of transportation are used to move one cargo, whereas rail is a single transportation mode to ship your merchandise.

What are the advantages of rail intermodal shipping?

Rail intermodal shipping has many benefits.

It is cost-efficient both for you and the environment because it reduces fuel consumption and CO2 emissions using the railways rather than trucks for the long haul. It also increases your shipment’s security and reliability due to its small number of exposures throughout the journey, as the intermodal containers are not opened and unloaded at each transition. There are fewer chances of getting lost or damaged than in a standard multi-carrier shipment.

Eco-friendly, low-cost, safe, and reliable rail intermodal shipping has it all!

How are rail freight rates calculated?

Rail rates are set by the rail carriers themselves.

These prices vary for each shipment according to many factors such as the type of container used, dates, size, distance, weight, destination, level of service and many more.

What are the intermodal accessorial charges?

The accessorial charges are the costs that apply in addition to the freight rate for additional services you may need.

These can include demurrage, fuel surcharges, per diem charges etc.

Concerned about the intermodal accessorial charges you might have to pay? Have a look at our dedicated blog post to know more about them and ask our team for advice when booking your intermodal shipments.

What intermodal trends should I be looking for in 2023?

In 2023, intermodal transportation trends will continue technological advancement, with more connectivity between modes and better cargo tracking. Automation and robotics are two trends that will impact the industry in a big way, as AI-driven technology leads to improvements in efficiency and accuracy. Additionally, sustainability initiatives such as using low-carbon fuels, reducing emissions from fleets, and using renewable energy will become important factors for business success.

More Questions?

Feel free to reach out and talk to our team!
We are here to answer any questions you have.