Intermodal transport




Intermodal transport, simply put, refers to the transportation of goods using more than one mode of transport, with the assistance of a single loading unit (such as a container or swap body) throughout the entire transportation route.

According to the definition, intermodal transport is characterized by:

  • The requirement of using at least two modes of transport.
  • The utilization of a single transport contract.
  • The involvement of a single operator responsible for the delivery process.
  • The need for unitizing the cargo, i.e., creating a single loading unit from multiple smaller units to increase transport efficiency.

Intermodal transport is sometimes interchangeably referred to as combined transport or multimodal transport, but they are not exactly the same. European documents from 2001 present different definitions for these terms. So what are the differences between intermodal, multimodal, and combined transport? Multimodal transport allows for the change of loading units, while in combined transport, the main portion of the route is carried out using rail or sea transport.

The use of the same containers or trailers throughout the entire transport route enables smooth movement of the cargo between different modes of transport. The involvement of intermodal transport in the global supply chain is continuously growing due to its numerous advantages.


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Intermodal transport is a future-oriented mode of transportation that is constantly evolving. Compared to traditional road transport, it offers numerous advantages. Here are the key benefits of intermodal transport:

  1. Lower transportation costs – Intermodal transport allows for the utilization of a route that is optimal in terms of fuel efficiency.
  2. Optimized transport time – Freight transportation is efficient and often faster than sea transport, and in many cases, it is quicker than road transport.
  3. Reduced environmental impact – Intermodal transport is environmentally friendly due to its lower CO2 emissions.
  4. Enhanced security – Intermodal transport utilizes rail transportation with containers, reducing the risk of theft, accidents, and cargo damage.
  5. Single transport contract – Having one document simplifies the provision of services and facilitates oversight of the transportation process.

Intermodal transport offers these advantages and is continuously gaining prominence as a sustainable and efficient transportation solution.




The disadvantages of intermodal transport include logistical complexity. Thus far, there hasn’t been a unified logistical system specifically designed for intermodal transportation, necessitating separate oversight for each stage. Additionally, there are high infrastructure costs involved, such as the need for specialized handling equipment like cranes or hoists. However, despite these drawbacks, the number of advantages outweighs the disadvantages, making intermodal transport the most favorable solution in many cases.


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Intermodal transport is characterized by reduced CO2 emissions. In the TSL industry, the importance of ecology is constantly growing. The trend towards reducing CO2 emissions into the environment is gaining momentum and is one of the key factors shaping the development paths of transport companies.

The popularity of intermodal transport is increasing. Rail transport, which is a significant component of intermodal transportation, is promoted by EU policies due to its environmental aspects, improved safety, and lower costs. Therefore, favorable regulatory changes can be expected in the future, contributing to the development of this type of transport.




PEKO International Forwarding is an experienced partner in organizing intermodal transportation. Our long-standing presence in the industry, expert service provided by our team, and network of trusted contacts deserve special attention.

Our company offers comprehensive intermodal transport services. We ensure timely delivery of goods to their destination. We also handle documentation, warehousing, customs clearance, and cargo insurance.

We provide top-level freight forwarding services. We execute orders for both domestic and international transportation with continental and intercontinental coverage. Our distinguishing factor is our flexible approach, enabling us to create favorable offers tailored to our clients’ needs. This is possible due to our dedicated team of experts, well-established operating methods, and a network of contacts with carriers. With us, supply chains always operate efficiently!




Intermodal transport is suitable for the transportation of large quantities of goods over both short and long distances, especially in cases where different modes of transport are required, such as in hard-to-reach locations.

A strong argument in favor of intermodal transport is its optimal price and delivery time, as well as the ability to ship a large volume of goods at once. Entrusting intermodal transportation to a professional freight forwarding company is ideal for those who value safety, convenience, and efficiency.




Intermodal transport is a modern solution in logistics that enhances the supply chain by utilizing at least two different modes of transportation. The reduced reliance on drivers or the need for transshipment translates into lower transportation costs, while the ability to leverage different modes of transport provides greater flexibility and helps overcome challenges. Intermodal transport opens up greater possibilities. See for yourself and start collaborating with us!

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