Backhaul Trucking Definition

A backhaul is a transit or trip required by the truck driver and his vehicle to reposition himself after the initial load he was paid to transport.
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What is Backhaul Trucking?

Everyone wants to save money on their freight quotes. There is no hidden secret behind this motive. Being able to save money on your freight shipping means that you will have more finances to redistribute to other sectors of your business or, even if you're lucky, to save. With that in mind, have you heard of backhaul trucking?

Truckload shipping is made up of different components, and one of those components is the backhaul. A backhaul is a transit or trip required by the truck driver and his vehicle to reposition himself after the initial load he was paid to transport.

You can think of it like this: If the driver is hired to transport freight from point A to point B, what is his next move after he has delivered to point B? In backhaul trucking, markets play a critical role, and point B might not be situated in an ideal market for making the most revenue

The driver will naturally be required to make the trip back to point A using the same truck. His journey back to point A is called the backhaul. The backhaul can be back to a different pickup location or back to his home base.

How Does Backhaul Trucking Save You Money?

If you have a devoted truckload team (with stuff like GPS truck tracking), they will be able to capitalize on these possibilities. Backhaul trucking rates become cheaper because the demand for these shipments is lower.

The chances of catching a driver on backhaul are usually higher when you're transporting freight from a "cold" market. In such an event, you will undoubtedly obtain a discounted freight quote. The significance of having a team is that these scenarios arise quickly and fast, and you require a team that knows its way around the freight system.

Backhaul Trucking Improves Fleet Operations


To increase efficiency and profits, you need to make sure that your trucks are always loaded, so you get paid for all your miles, both to and from. There are costs related to backhauling, and so it's crucial to make sure you understand your break-even point. Some of the costs that need to be accounted for include:


  • Fuel: Presently, in the United States, the average cost of diesel is $2.38 per gallon
  • Maintenance: Usually, a cost of 15 cents per mile is incurred in maintaining a truck's tires.
  • Driver compensation: This can vary dramatically, but the average cost is usually 36 cents per mile.
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