Loads 4 Africa

What Insurance options do I have for my delivery?

Most of Loads 4 Africa's Transport Providers hold Goods in Transit Insurance of varying levels. Customers can view the transport providers level of insurance on their profile page. It is up to the customer to inquire about insurance levels before accepting a bid.   Be sure that your goods are insured before you send your delivery on it's way, rather be safe than sorry!!!

Dimensions / Dimensional Weight

Shipping costs have historically been calculated on the basis of gross weight in kilograms or pounds. By charging only by weight, lightweight, low density packages become unprofitable for freight carriers due to the amount of space they take up in the truck/aircraft/ship in proportion to their actual weight. The concept of Dimensional Weight has been adopted by the transportation industry worldwide as a uniform means of establishing a minimum charge for the cubic space a package occupies.

Volumetric CalculationRound Objects

Weight Calculation

Dimensional weight is a calculation of a theoretical weight of a package. This theoretical weight is the weight of the package at a minimum density chosen by the freight carrier. If the package is below this minimum density, then the actual weight is irrelevant as the freight carrier will charge for the volume of the package as if it were of the chosen density (what the package would weigh at the minimum density). Furthermore, the volume used to calculate the Dimensional Weight may not be absolutely representative of the true volume of the package. The freight carrier will measure the longest dimension in each of the three axis (X,Y,Z) and use these measurements to determine the package volume. If the package is a right-angled rectangular cuboid (box), then this will be equal to the true volume of the package. However, if the package is of any other shape, then the calculation of volume will be more than the true volume of the package.

Dimensional weight is also known as DIM Weight, volumetric weight, Cubed Weight, etc. Freight carriers utilize the greater of the actual weight or dimensional weight to calculate shipping charges. Dimensional Weight is calculated as (Length x Width x Height) / (Dimensional Factor). Measurements can be made all in inches or all in centimeters, but the appropriate shipping factor must also be used.

Shipping factors for imperial measurements represent cubic inches per pound (in3/lb) while metric factors represent cubic centimeters per kilogram (cm3/kg). These are the inverse of the package density. Dimensional Weight is applied when the actual product density is less than the minimum density represented by the chosen factor. Dimensional Weight is representative of the weight of the package at the minimum density accepted by the freight carrier. Shipping factors are not only different for imperial and metric measurements, but also for shipment mode and in some cases between different customers. Shipping factors will be available from your freight carrier. Some common factors are listed below.

Imperial Shipping Factor examples:

166 in3/lb = 10.4 lb/ft3 - common for IATA shipments
194 in3/lb = 8.9 lb/ft3 - common for domestic shipments
216 in3/lb = 8.0 lb/ft3
225 in3/lb = 7.7 lb/ft3
250 in3/lb = 6.9 lb/ft3

Metric Shipping Factor examples:

5000 cm3/kg = 200 kg/m3
6000 cm3/kg = 166.667 kg/m3
7000 cm3/kg = 142.857 kg/m3

When calculating the dimensional weight with metric measurements, the Length, Width, and Height are measured in centimeters (cm) and the result is stated in a nominal kilogram (kg) dimensional weight band (usually rounded up).

Packaging Tips

You can make a difference in removing many of the variables which safeguard that freight arrives in the same condition it left in. All our carriers comply with a high level of care, however there are many factors that cannot be controlled, from general transit movement with surrounding freight to the changing weather conditions. Please use our tips and hint guide to assist you and ensure you read the transport service providers terms and conditions.


Please ensure for your benefit that the box/carton you choose to package your goods in is the correct size for the item you are sending. There are different sized boxes for a reason. Choose a box that has enough room for your item and some protective packaging. Also try and package heavy items into smaller boxes (preferably double-walled boxes) and lightweight bulkier items into larger boxes.

The box/carton must be sturdy and robust and preferably 'corrugated' with flaps intact. Never use boxes that are damaged, thin, old, worn or damp; and never use fruit boxes or miscellaneous boxes from a supermarket. If in doubt, try your local storage company as they also sell packaging materials and boxes.

Don't make the carton too heavy. This may cause issues in a few ways:

  • The carton may break at the bottom.

  • Sortation staff in depots may drop it accidentally because they've underestimated the weight.

  • Your carton may be loaded into the 'bulk freight' section of a vehicle which means your carton sits amongst heavy and large freight, increasing the possibility of damage.

  • If it is a heavy carton, mark it as 'HEAVY' in bold writing and write the weight next to it. For Occupational Health and Safety reasons, most transport companies have a maximum liftable weight per item. Businesses may consider strapping a  heavy carton to a skid (i.e. a small version of a pallet), enabling staff to utilise forklifts to lift the item.  If you cannot break the carton down, you should have someone available at the pickup and delivery addresses to help the driver load/unload the item.

  • If you still have the original box for a product then it is recommended to use it. Especially if you still have the original polystyrene protection that came with the box (as this packaging was specifically designed to protect the product).

  • If you have to re-use an old box, make sure that all old bar-coded labels or address labels have been completed removed to avoid sortation issues and delays to your goods. Also ensure there are no holes/tears or corner dents that could ultimately weaken the box during transport.


  • When sending your goods with a courier/freight company, your items will be handled numerous times before they arrive to the destination. There are major differences between a furniture removalist company and a courier/freight company.

  • Furniture removalists generally take a full load from your home/office to the destination in the same truck. Your goods may be handled 2-4 times from pickup to delivery.

  • If you are sending a courier/freight company, your goods may be loaded and unloaded anywhere from 4-15 times in and out of up to 5 different trucks or rail containers. Hence it is extremely important to package your goods well for the rigorous journey that they are about to take.

  • A sturdy box/carton is your first requirement, then the way you package your goods is also important:


  • Don't overload the box with too many items or too much weight. It's always better to package multiple items individually (if possible) and use more than one box if required. This way each individual item can receive the benefit of proper protection from packaging material and the box.


  • Sending equipment such as DVD players, TVs, computers and electrical equipment is best sent in its original packaging and box. If you don't have this, then you can purchase packaging material and boxes from your local storage companies or look for 'packaging companies' in your local town. Bubble-wrap is a must for sensitive or fragile items.


  • If you don't want to go to the expense of purchasing packaging material, a last resort is to use shredded paper or scrunched up newspaper. The problem with this type of packaging material is it does not hold its shape and can become compacted during transportation. This creates a void inside the box which can jeopardize the integrity of the box and make it more likely to become crushed or open-up during transit.


  • Whatever packaging material is used, ensure there is enough cushioning material around the item/s so they don't move if the box is shaken or bumped. A recommendation is to cushion with at least 5-8 centimetres of packaging material all around the item (fragile items require more cushioning). Quite often during a long journey in a truck, there will be 'shunting' when the truck stops. Cushioning is very important to stop shock from the outside passing through to the contents causing damage (this is especially the case for fragile items). A recommendation in the transport industry is that all items are packaged to withstand a one metre drop.


  • Proper closure of the box is essential for safe transportation. Use a 'wide' pressure sensitive plastic tape (this can be purchased from storage or packaging companies). Do not use masking tape, Scotch tape, duct tape or string. When taping the box, ensure you go all the way around the box and along the seals (particularly for re-used or old boxes) to stop the box opening during transit.

Courier Dangerous Goods Tips

Dangerous goods are objects or substances that are potentially harmful to people or the environment, such as explosives or chemicals. Dangerous goods can blow up, burn, corrode or poison people. They should be handled, stored and transported with great care.

Dangerous goods are classified in various ways, including United Nations identification numbers, Hazchem codes and Packing Group Numbers. Some dangerous goods, such as certain chemicals, are also classified as hazardous substances. Employers using these products in the workplace must abide by the regulations for both dangerous goods and hazardous substances.


Dangerous goods include:

  • Compressed oxygen or other gases.
  • Explosives.
  • Flammable liquids, such as alcohol, and flammable solids, such as nitrocellulose.
  • Infectious substances.
  • Oxidising substances, such as ammonium dichromate or pool chlorine.
  • Radioactive materials.


Lithium batteries are a perfect example of safety changes and classifications. Since recent changes in law, Lithium Ion and Lithium Metal Batteries have been classified as dangerous goods and can only be freighted to destinations following compliance with strict guidelines imposed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).


Dangerous goods are classified according to their properties, such as ‘compressed toxic gas’, ‘flammable solid’ or ‘toxic liquid’. Some dangerous goods attract subsidiary risk classifications - for example, chlorine gas is classed as toxic first and corrosive second.

Dangerous goods have their own United Nations identification number. Packing Group numbers classify dangerous goods according to risk. ‘Packing Group I’ classification indicates a high risk substance and ‘Packing Group III’, a lower risk substance.

Finally, Hazchem codes give emergency services personnel shorthand information on the properties of the substance


Homes commonly store small quantities of dangerous goods including petrol, kerosene, pesticides and pool chemicals such as chlorine. Safe handling suggestions include:

  • Dangerous goods should be kept in their original containers and never decanted into other bottles.
  • All labelling, including warning labels and manufacturers' instructions, should remain intact on the packaging.
  • Different types of dangerous goods should be stored separately to prevent a chemical reaction. Liquids and powders should be separated.
  • All ignition sources should be kept well away from the storage area.
  • If in doubt, contact the manufacturer for information. They are required to provide safety information on their products.
  • Dangerous goods should be kept out of reach of children in a secure location.


Regulations on storing and handling dangerous goods are designed to prevent accidents. Business premises such as chemical plants, service stations, laboratories and hospitals must comply with the regulations.

  • The regulations cover a range of safety issues, including:
  • Storage design, construction and location
  • Storage specifications for dangerous goods
  • Separating dangerous goods that may react when stored together
  • Fire prevention requirements
  • Protection equipment installation
  • Keep a full record, or manifest, of dangerous goods to inform emergency services in case of an accident
  • Some premises need licensing if they store more than a certain amount of dangerous goods.


Some businesses - such as factories, warehouses, hospitals and farms - are required to post appropriate warning notices about the dangerous goods they store. These warning notices must be posted at various key locations throughout the business premises, including:

  • At the vehicle entrance
  • At all storage access points
  • Hazchem signs at entrances, if your premises exceed the prescribed storage limit of some dangerous goods.


The Hazchem sign offers shorthand information about the dangerous goods to emergency services personnel, including:

  • The type of fire extinguishing agent required, such as water or foam.
  • Details of violent reactions.
  • Suggested personal protective equipment.
  • Information on whether to dilute the effluent.
  • Whether evacuation is necessary.


In the event of an accident, emergency services personnel need to know about the type and amounts of dangerous goods stored on your premises. A detailed list should be available to emergency services personnel.

Some businesses need to prepare plans for emergencies in consultation with the relevant fire protection authority. An emergency management plan may include:

  • Evacuation procedure for the workers.
  • Standard procedures for contacting emergency services.
  • Emergency contact lists, including after hours telephone numbers.
  • Emergency equipment details.
  • Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) location.
  • Site-containment measures.


  • Dangerous goods can blow up, burn, corrode or poison people.
  • Laws relating to dangerous goods are designed to prevent accidents.
  • Your Transport Service Provider can give you information on the storage, transportation and handling of dangerous goods if you are not sure.

Emailing Loads 4 Africa for a quote

Loads 4 Africa is a platform where shippers and transporters can meet and enter into an agreement to transport goods.   Loads 4 Africa is not a brokerage or a transport service provider.   If you need a quote on transportation, you must register and submit the requirements on to the website.   Our members will Quote you!!!