XTRA Lease News

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Rent Fewer Trailers

Yep, we said it. Rent fewer trailers.

We’re big fans of effective spending. It drives cost out of the supply chain, which makes everybody, from manufacturer to consumer, happy.

While it’s clear that renting fewer trailers means you’ll spend less on rentals, how can renting fewer trailers make you more efficient?


How a request for 40 turned into 66

Here’s how easily inefficiency can sneak into a truckload carrier’s operations:

  1. When your customer needs 40 trailers, they round up so they don’t run short during their business peaks. So they ask for 50 trailers instead of 40.

  2. When you get a request for 50 trailers, you may add 10 to be sure you can meet your customer’s needs even if they change. Now you’re at 60 trailers.

  3. If you don’t use trailer tracking, it may be hard to figure out the actual number of trailers your customer already has from you, so it’s pretty safe to assume forgotten trailers are sitting idle in your customer’s yard. Even if those forgotten trailers amount to only 10% of the total number they want from you, that’s another 6 trailers.

So you see how the original need for 40 trailers has ballooned into pool of 66 trailers, 26 of which, most likely, will be idle most of the time.

“At least they’ll be available if we need them,” you say.

That’s true, but they aren’t pulling their weight and that’s not efficient. Instead, they’re a drain on your resources, a cost that fails to generate profits. And what if another of your customers needs those trailers? You don’t want to have to turn down business.

To be efficient, you need to figure out the optimal number of trailers you need.

To do that, turn to trailer tracking. It’s the easiest way to get detailed, accurate and timely information about how you actually USE trailers.


One of the greatest benefits of trailer tracking is that it helps you become aware of idle trailers. Now there are good reasons (storing cargo) and bad reasons (sitting idle) for having trailers that don’t move. But it takes just one idle trailer to make a negative impact on your bottom line.

The savings you get by acting on your trailer tracking data are bigger than any discount on rental or lease rates you can get. Because you’re renting fewer trailers.

So use trailer tracking and rent fewer trailers!