Dunnage is a term that’s almost never used outside of the shipping industry. And here’s the thing, you probably used dunnage yourself. If you ever packed an item and wrapped it in something to protect it during transport, you used dunnage.
Dunnage is a term used to describe the packing components that help secure, protect, and support packages during the handling and shipping processes, whether these components are planks, boards, plastic bracing, foam, fillers, bubble wrap, crinkle paper, kraft paper, or something else.
As a rule of thumb, the more fragile an item, the more dunnage it needs. So, if you want to ship a glass bottle, you should probably use bubble wrap to fill in the extra space in the box so that the bottle wouldn’t move around during transport. On the other hand, a sweater is more difficult to damage than a glass bottle, so wrapping it in kraft paper would probably offer it enough protection.
What is Dunnage in Shipping?
Dunnage is defined as being a durable padding material that’s used to protect certain goods during shipping. Dunnage can be anything from wooden planks to bubble wrap or solid plastics that provide cushioning so that the items you ship won’t move and be harmed during handling and transport.
Even though dunnage is very important, it works best when it’s paired with the right box, bag, or another type of container. Shippers avoid placing small items in large boxes, even if they could fill the extra space with dunnage, and they also avoid sending items without using containers because that would not be as effective as pairing the dunnage with the right container.
Why Shipping Companies Use Dunnage
Shipping companies use dunnage to protect fragile items during handling and transport. Each package you send may go through some rough environmental conditions on its way to the recipient. Here are the main reasons why shippers use dunnage:
Shippers have many types of dunnage materials to choose from. You can use lightweight material for sturdy items or durable materials such as wood or steel to protect fragile and expensive products.
Here are some of the most common 11 dunnage materials currently used:
When you use Ship Expert’s warehousing and fulfillment services, you can rest assured that we will use the right kind of dunnage for your items. We wrap sensitive items in bubble wrap and ship them in right-sized containers, and we use paper wrap for packages that don’t need extra padding to keep your costs low.
And thanks to our distributed network of fulfillment centers, your products will always be shipped from the center that’s closest to your customer, so they won’t spend a lot of time in transit. Your products will reach their destination quickly and safely.
Start your small business shipping with Ship Expert today.