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Hundredweight / CWT Pricing

Centum weight CWT or Hundredweight Pricing

Centum Weight (CWT) or Hundredweight pricing, a favorite among large LTL carriers, can be a little bit trickier to compare and analyse.  This type of rating was developed prior to deregulation and allowed large LTL carriers to base their rates on a system of “Actual” vs. “Volume or Cubic” weight.

CWT pricing is ultimately always determined by the “billable weight” of a shipment.  This billable weight is determined by comparing the “actual” weight of a shipment against the “Volume” weight of the shipment.

The volume (cubic)  weight is determined by multiplying the Length, Width & Height of the freight and dividing the resulting number by 1728.  That factor is multiplied by minimum lbs. Per cubic foot designated by the carrier.  (usually 10 lbs.)

For example, let’s look at a 300 lb. pallet measuring 48” x 40” x 50” (LWH)  a dimensional weight of 556 lbs.   To arrive at this “dimensional” weight I used the following formula:

  1. 48x40x50 = 96,000
  2. 96,000 / 1728 = 55.55
  3. 55.55  x 10 = 555.55 lbs.  (based on 10 lbs/cubic ft.)

Once the actual and cubic weight are determined,  the larger of the two “weights” is used for calculation purposes.

Once the billable weight is known (in the case of the example 556 lbs.) we determine where in our rating table the that weight is applicable.

Below is a standard CWT Tariff rate for Freight moving from Toronto, ON to Syracuse, NY

MIN LTL 500 lbs. 1M 2M 5M
$45.00 $16.00 14.50 12.50 $10.25 9.00


The method for using the rate table is pretty straight forward.  Just take the billable weight, dive it by 100 and multiply it in the applicable column.

Tariff Breakpoints:

MIN This is the absolute minimum charge for this lane (no matter what the actual for dimensional weight is.)

LTL This is the rate you will apply if your billable weight is less than 500 Lbs.

500 Lbs.  This is the rate you will apply when your billable weight is more than 500 lbs., but less than 1000 lbs.

1M  More than 1000 lbs. – less than 2000 lbs.

2M  More than 2000 lbs. – less than 5000 lbs.

5M  More than 5000 lbs.

Example 1

A Pallet 48” x 40” x 48”  1200 lbs.

  • We know the actual Weight: 1200 Lbs.
  • To get the dimensional weight of 533 lbs.
    • (48x40x48) = 92160
    • 92160/1728 = 53.33
    • 53.33 x 10 (10 lbs./cubic foot)
    • = 533 lbs.

In this example we would use the “Actual” weight for our billable weight. (1200 lbs.)

Since 1200 lbs. Falls between 1M & 2M on our rate table we will use the 1M rate for our calculation.

  • 1200 lbs. / 100 (to arrive at the hundredweight) = 12
  • 12 x 12.50 = $150.00

According to our tariff, the cost to ship 1200 lbs. From Toronto, ON to Syracuse NY is $150.00

Example 2

A Pallet 60” x 48” x 72”  450 lbs.

  • We know the actual Weight: 450 Lbs.
  • To get the dimensional weight of 533 lbs.
    • (72x48x65) = 224640
    • 224640/1728 = 130
    • 130 x 10 (10 lbs./cubic foot)
    • = 1300 lbs.

In this example we would use the “Dimensional” weight for our billable weight. (1300 lbs.)

Since 1300 lbs. Falls between 1M & 2M on our rate table we will use the 1M rate for our calculation.

  • 1300 lbs. / 100 (to arrive at the hundredweight) = 13
  • 13 x 12.50 = $162.50

According to our tariff, the cost to ship 1300 lbs. From Toronto, ON to Syracuse NY is $162.50   

Accessorials & Extra Services

Accessorial charges are fees that are assessed by a carrier for supplemental services provided in addition to the transport of the freight.  The most common extra services that carriers will bill out are as follows:

  1. Re-weigh: Often carriers will re-weigh freight on their cross-dock and re-bill accordingly.
  2. Re-size: When a carrier measures the shipment and adjusts the volume price.
  3. Lift-gate: Carriers uses the tailgate when a shipper/consignee does not have a truck level loading/unloading dock.
  4. Inside Delivery: When a driver is forced to bring freight inside a delivery address.
  5. Customs Processing fee: Applies to shipments that cross the border.
  6. Re-Delivery:  When a carrier makes multiple attempts to deliver a shipment.

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