Accessorials Explained

What is an accessorial fee?

An accessorial fee is an extra charge that is billed on less-than-truckload (LTL and in some cases Parcel) shipments for any additional services required to handle the freight. For example, this might include a destination charge for shipments being delivered to schools or farms, or extra handling for hazardous materials, or simply making sure that truck has a lift gate at the destination.

Additionally, LTL carriers assess a fuel surcharge that fluctuates based on the Department of Energy diesel fuel index.


Different Types of LTL Accessorial Fees 

Liftgate Service

Special hydraulic platform fitted at the back of some trucks to lift and lower shipments from the ground to the truck and vice versa.
Required when the shipper or consignee does not have a loading dock (or someone on-site to hand offload the freight).


Residential Pickup or Delivery

If a business is located in a residential zone (among personal homes or dwellings) or freight is shipping to or from a residence, the carrier may charge an additional fee due to the complexity in navigating non-business areas.
This fee includes a liftgate and pickup/delivery appointment. 


Container Freight Station (CFS)

A warehouse that deconsolidates containers for pickup.
There are very long wait times (which LTL carriers usually don't accommodate) and the driver is required to have the BOL and Delivery Order (D/O) on hand.


Limited Access

Pickups or deliveries at locations with limited access such as schools, military bases, prisons, or government buildings.


Blind / Double Blind Shipments

Applied when the carrier is required to act as the intermediary in instances when the shipper is unaware of the true destination and/or the consignee is unaware of the true origin.


Collect on Delivery (COD)

A customer will sell a product and request the carrier to collect the charges for the product upon delivery.


Notify Prior to Arrival

The shipper or consignee requires the carrier to notify them with the drivers ETA prior to pickup or delivery.



Each carrier allows so much “free time” (arrival to departure) to load a shipment onto their trailers. This is a charge for having a trailer delayed at their place of business in excess of the free time.
Uncommon in LTL shipping


Bill of Lading Correction (CBOL)

If a BOL with incorrect details (i.e. billing info, freight class, weight, delivery address) is provided at PU, the carrier can update the order details and re-process billing after they receive a LOA and the revised BOL from the 3PL or shipper, usually for an additional charge.


Pickup / Delivery Appointment 

When the carrier is required to contact the shipper or consignee to schedule an appointment for pickup or delivery, this fee will be added.

Excess Length

This varies between carriers, but as a general rule, this may be applied to any shipment over 10’ in length.


After Hours Pickup/Delivery

Imposed on any shipment that is outside of the general pickup/delivery window of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Convention, Exhibition, and Trade show Delivery/Pickup
Applies to any shipment that is delivered or picked up from a convention, exhibition, or tradeshow.


Hazardous Cargo (Hazmat)

Applies to any shipment that contains hazardous chemicals or substances.


Oversized Freight

Shipments containing articles greater than or equal to twelve feet in length.
Since these shipments take up more floor space on the trailer, additional fees often apply.


Inside Pickup or Delivery

Charge for picking up or delivering freight where the driver is required to go into a facility to make the pick up or delivery. Example, a mall or office building.



When a delivery cannot be made within a few days, the carrier will place the shipment in storage until the delivery can be made. This typically begins after a letter of intent is sent to the billing party.

Dry Run / Truck Ordered Not Used (TONU)

Applies when a pickup is requested and the carrier attempts to pick up only to have the shipment cancel or no freight is available.


Pallet Exchange

This charge is applied when pallets are required to be exchanged at time of pickup. Carrier gives the shipper empty pallets to replace the loaded ones they are receiving.
LTL carriers do not like to participate in pallet exchange. They generally charge a fee higher than the cost to buy new pallets in order to discourage this request.


High Value

All carriers only have a certain amount of liability and with most LTL carriers, they will only cover a particular amount per pound.
If a shipment exceeds that amount, additional insurance may be purchased to cover it in case of damage.
Each carrier has different coverage, so be sure to check their rules tariff.


Redelivery Fee

When a shipment cannot be delivered, at no fault of the carrier, then a re-delivery charge will apply for the 2nd and each additional delivery attempt.


Reweigh / Reclass or Inspection Charges

These are additional charges dependent upon the difference in the actual freight compared to what is on the bill of lading.


Deluxe Delivery / White Glove Service

Here the driver WILL touch the freight and deliver to the room of choice. The first flight of steps is typically free and debris removal to the dumpster is included.
For this service, 2 Men and Delivery signature are usually required.


Guaranteed Delivery

An extra charge to guarantee the transit time of a shipment once it has been picked up, in order for it to get delivered by a certain date.


Fuel Surcharge

An extra charge imposed by the carriers due to the excessive costs for diesel gas.
The charge is a percentage that is normally based upon the U.S. Department of Energy National Average Diesel Fuel Index.



When a shipment’s destination is changed after pickup was completed.
Charge is determined by where the shipment is located at the time of the re-consignment and where it needs to be re-consigned to.


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