Advantages of Rail Transport

Updated: Jun 28, 2021

One of the most widely used methods of transportation are trains. It is an environmentally friendly and reliable way to transport goods from one place to another. Many people just think that it is a conventional method of transportation and that it is old fashioned. In this article, I have listed some advantages of rail transport for you to consider choosing railway transportwhen shipping your goods.



Here are some advantages of rail transport:

Rail transport is fast and reliable with short lead times Rail freight is a quite reliable transport mode by reducing lead times compared to sea freight. If you’re looking for a reliable way to transport your cargo, then rail freight as a transport option is a great choice. When shipping by ocean freight, one of the big challenges for companies with production and manufacturing in China is the long lead times to Europe. From China to northern Europe via Ocean transports usually take about six weeks. It is possible to reduce 50% transportation times with rail freight, which will reduce the lead time significantly. To companies operating in the fast-moving industry which need short delivery times as less as possible, reducing the lead time is especially beneficial.

The most Dependable mode of transport: When you are sending a shipment of something valuable, you want to know that it will arrive in one piece and that it is going to get there on time without affect by weather conditions. That is why some carriers provide their clients with guaranteed service. This means that a carrier will have to pay extra if one of their clients’ shipments is delivered outside of the time slot provided by the carrier. Even with guaranteed service, rail freight is the most dependable mode of transport.


Railway transport can be cost-effective. Trains are good at hauling large loads. Shippers who choose long haul freight from road transport to railway transport can save the cost about ten to forty percent. Compared to road transport, railway transport has lower costs of consuming fuel , especially when transporting the commodity with a high volume. Railway transport also has fewer costs by hiring drivers. Trains use less fuel per ton-mile than trucks.

Railway transport can be cost effective. The fuel costs of a train are minimal. A train can be used to pull a long string of wagons, while a lorry will struggle with only two. The track is fixed, so the driver can concentrate on driving, and not worry about the road conditions. A track can be a more efficient way of transporting goods.


Rail transport is better organised When it comes to organising cargo, rail transport is better since it usualy has fixed schedules and fixed route. It is the safest and most economical mode of transport. At the same time, the rail transportation is a lot easier to organize. All you have to do is fill in a shipping request form and we will get you a quote within a day. It is that simple!


Rail transport can be efficient Trains are the most fuel-efficient of all land transport modes, with an average efficiency of 1.14 kg CO2 per tonne-kilometre (kg CO2/t-km) compared to 3.62 kg CO2/t-km for trucks. In other words, trains use about one third of the fuel per unit of cargo carried compared to highway trucks. Compared with air freight, trains use about one twelfth of the fuel used by air freight. Rail transport can be very efficient. The Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR) is one of the largest and most successful freight railroads in the United States. In 2017, for example, UPRR reported revenue of $29.9 billion, and net income of around $2.7 billion. (Source: " Union Pacific Net Income and Revenue Stats ," Investopedia, last accessed July 12, 2018.)

Limitations of rail while rail transportation can be a great solution for many shippers, it isn't for everyone though. There are some limitations to consider:

Rail transport is Lack of Flexibility Although rail transport is very popular, it also has its disadvantages. One of them is the inflexibility of the routes and timetables. In recent years, freight traffic has increased and so has the number of passengers. For example, the train network is run by a national railway company and it cannot be changed to fit your individual needs.

Rail transport is Lack of Door to Door Service Rail transport is one of the fastest and most economical ways to transport goods from one place to another; however, it is not the best way to transport from door to door. This is because intermediate loading and unloading involves greater cost, more wear and tear and wastage of time.

While air freight and sea freight are the primary modes of transport for high-value goods, they can be prohibitively expensive for many freight shippers. However, shipping between China and Europe, Neptune Logistics can offer a fast and reliable railway transport service as alternative to air and sea freight. Contact us for more details.


Follow this link to send an enquiry to us to check if your cargo is suitable for railway transport, or send an email to info@nep-logistics.com!


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