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Book with the Best: Freight Companies in Chicago

Resources > Book with the Best: Freight Companies in Chicago
Freight needs to move fast in the Windy City. See how the right logistics partner can help with freight shipping in Chicago and much more. Get a quote now!
Published: March 12, 2021
Last Modified: August 28, 2023
Author: Ask Truckload

Freight companies in Chicago, Illinois, move at the speed of business. All kinds of commodities come and go from the Windy City. From goods flowing through the Illinois International Port on Lake Michigan to manufactured products from area plants, there are many opportunities for freight movement in Chicago.

Freight companies in Chicago are prepared to handle almost any commodity you need to move. With so many major corporations based in the Windy City, freight movement is essential to keeping supply chains strong. From third-party logistics (3PL)  partners to top carriers and brokers, freight shipping companies in Chicago need to move quickly and efficiently.

Ready to start moving freight in Chicago? No matter whether you’re transporting goods to or from this major city, you need the right partner to get it there on time, every time. Let’s look at some of the companies in Chicago; what freight transportation services are available; when freight shopping is a good option; how you can get a fair freight service quote; and how the right logistics company partner can help.

What Major Companies are in Chicago?


The Chicago metropolitan area is a major Mecca for commerce and innovation. The city and its suburbs are home to many recognizable corporations, including quite a few Fortune 500 companies. 

Chicago has a diversified economy. Top sectors and industries contributing to the Chicago economy include manufacturing, printing and publishing, finance and insurance, and food processing. The tech sector also thrives here. 

But what major companies are in Chicago, IL? Major contributors to the region’s economy include companies headquartered in Chicago like:

  • Boeing
  • Blick Art Materials
  • Sears Holdings Corporation
  • Walgreens Boots Alliance
  • Abbott Laboratories
  • Florists' Transworld Delivery (FTD) 
  • Jewel-Osco
  • IGA
  • Ace Hardware
  • Exelon
  • True Value
  • Echo Global Logistics
  • Grubhub
  • Aon Corp
  • RR Donnelley & Sons
  • And many others

Many manufacturers have a presence in the Chicago area. In fact, the region is a United States hub for production. Manufacturers in Chicago and surrounding regions include:

  • Ford Motor Company’s Chicago Assembly Plant
  • Gold Eagle Co.
  • Archer-Daniels-Midland Company
  • Conagra Brands
  • JBT
  • Quaker Oats Company
  • John Crane

With so many corporations and manufacturers based in Chicago, it’s easy to see why logistics services are in demand here.

Shipping Freight from the Illinois International Port

Truckload freight, air freight, rail freight, and even lake freight make Chicago’s economy move fast. The Illinois International Port on Lake Michigan is a major multimodal facility and is serviced by many major freight companies in Chicago. The port moves 19 million tons of cargo each year according to recent numbers from the Port District.

The port has been essential to regional trade and commerce since the 1700s. Today the Illinois International Port operates as a Foreign Trade Zone and bills itself as the “Greatest Multimodal Facility in America.” 

The international port is made up of the Iroquois Landing Lakefront Terminus and Senator Dan Dougherty Harbor. Each location provides access for waterway freight shipping, railroads, road access, and more. In fact, the port is in a strategic location within 10 miles of five major US highways.

Though Chicago’s economy thrives on business and industry, the rest of Illinois supports an agricultural economy. As a result, Senator Dan Dougherty Harbor features the two largest grain storage facilities in the state, allowing for the storage and transport of more than 14 million bushels. This storage feature is essential to the process of freight shipping grain.

What Companies Ship Freight from Chicago?

Major corporations and manufacturers in Chicago, along with freight moving in and out of the international port create many opportunities for freight movement.

You’ll find that most major shipping companies have a stronghold in the Chicago freight market. USA Truckload Shipping, powered by R+L Global Logistics, provides access to top carriers and freight companies in Chicago through our diverse and dependable logistics services.

In fact, you can count on R+L Global Logistics when you need any transportation service, warehouse service, and more. R+L Global Logistics knows industry and supply chain movement inside and out and is ready to provide full-service 3PL services throughout North America.

R+L Global Logistics is ready to meet the needs of all freight shippers in the Chicago area. In fact, R+L Global Logistics has a Chicago office in Westmont, IL, which means you can get local service from a world-wide company. Count on R+L Global when you need direct access to top freight companies in Chicago.

Need to book a  freight shipping from Illinois to New York? See how the right partner can go the distance and haul your shipment with ease.

When Do I Need Freight Shipping in Chicago?


Freight shipping is essential to keeping Chicago’s supply chains running strong. You’ll likely need freight shipping in Chicago when moving large shipments of goods. Maybe you’re picking up a truckload of grain from the Illinois International Port. Maybe you’re moving car parts to the Ford Motor Company’s Chicago Assembly Plant. Maybe you’re moving another commodity. 

Regardless of what you’re shipping, there are some commonalities between freight shipping all kinds of Chicago commodities. Let’s look at when you might need freight shipping in Chicago!

Basically, if you’re shipment is crated, palletized, or in excess of 150 lbs, you might need to utilize freight shipping services to get your goods on the move. Most parcel carriers won’t handle shipments on pallets or heavy shipments, so freight shipping will be your best option in these cases.

Another thing to keep in mind is that freight shipping is most often reserved for B2B or commercial shipments. If you need to find a freight shipper to move items goods, our Guide to Shipping Personal Goods might help you find the best freight companies in Chicago for your move.

Truckload vs LTL Freight Companies in Chicago

USA Truckload Shipping, powered by R+L Global Logistics, is ready to handle your next shipment. We’re here to match you with the best freight companies in Chicago to get your goods on the road.

While we specialize in full truckload freight, we can also help with your LTL needs. What’s the difference between truckload and LTL freight? 

Truckload freight is just as it sounds. You need truckload freight service when you need a single dedicated truck to haul your shipment. You might need truckload freight shipping if you are moving more than 13 pallets of goods in a single shipment.

LTL freight, also known as less than truckload freight, is for smaller shipments. You might opt for LTL shipping if you’re just moving a few pallets of goods. 

Regardless of which option you choose, you need access to the best freight companies in Chicago to get the job done.

How Do I Get a Fair Freight Rate Quote?


The right freight shipping partner should always provide a fair freight quote. However, you will likely find that there are a few things to think about when seeking quotes from freight companies in Chicago. 

Even though it is easy to get a freight quote, a lot of considerations go into the process. You’ll find that the many freight companies in Chicago base their freight quotes on factors like freight density (for LTL shipments), the commodity you’re moving, the origin and destination of your shipment, fuel surcharges, season, and additional services needed can all influence how much it costs to move your shipment.

One thing you can do to ensure a fair freight rate quote is to work with a live agent. USA Truckload Shipping, powered by R+L Global Logistics, provides quotes over the phone or via e-mail, whichever you prefer. This friendly touch means you’re working with a freight agent dedicated to meeting your needs. As a result, we are able to work with carrier partners to provide an accurate spot quote without hidden fees or extra hassle.

Chicago is home to a bustling fashion district. See how freight shipping clothing with the right partner can help you get styles in stores now.

Move Chicago Freight with a Strategic Partner

Ready to work with the best freight companies in Chicago? Let USA Truckload Shipping, powered by R+L Global Logistics, be your strategic partner. We know how to make the Windy City freight market work for you.

No matter your shipping needs, R+L Global has a solution. We work with freight companies in Chicago to provide:

  • Full truckload shipping
  • LTL shipping
  • White-glove delivery
  • Container transport from the Illinois International Port and beyond
  • Heavy haul trucking
  • Expedited freight
  • Lowboy and flatbed carriers
  • Expedited freight
  • Container transport from the Illinois International Port and beyond
  • Temperature-controlled shipping
  • Hazmat carriers
  • Liftgate service
  • And more

Let us match you with the right Chicago freight company to get your shipment moving. Contact our staff of freight agents at (866) 353-7178 and let us give you a fair spot quote. We’ll make the process of freight shipping goods simple, regardless of the commodity you’re moving.

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