Procurement Tips: When is the appropriate time for requesting freight quotes?

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This post is part of a series on best practices for requesting freight quotes from Ticontract Managing Director Thomas Einsiedler. For additional tips, please click the “Transportation procurement tips” tag in the right sidebar.

There are different reasons and objectives for running a freight RFQ. These tips and hints are the result of many years of experience in advising and assisting our customers in the most diverse transportation sourcing projects.

The advantages of flexibility when requesting freight quotes

If you have defined the objective of the freight RFQ, take a look at your timeline next. By analyzing market conditions prior to launching a bid request, you can obtain useful data on pricing trends and determine the best time to launch an RFQ. In principle, the more flexible you are regarding the launch date of the RFQ, the better you can take advantage of market forces that will affect pricing.

Timing is everything

It might be useful to separate your proposal from those of other important market-leading companies also requesting similar information from the same carriers within the same timeframe. Keeping in mind that carriers have a limited capacity to handle RFQs, consider smoothing out the peaks at the end of the year by postponing your requests to a more suitable time, such as the beginning of the following year. For this reason, you should identify a favorable call-up time, if possible, for a better outcome. If you are not bound by a fixed date due to expiring agreements, you can better react to the current market situation.

Aim to analyze the respective market environment before you determine the date of the RFQ. Market research reports like the Transporeon Transport Market Radar ( can help you track the development of market prices with the relevant market indices beforehand.

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