What Are the Best Load Boards for Truckers?

Trucking load boards

Last Updated March 21, 2024

As a business owner in the logistics and transportation industry, you understand that time is money. Missed connections and empty miles can eat into your profits and grow into significant problems.

The competitive nature of the business puts additional pressure on ensuring your trucks are always loaded and on the move. This is where having access to the best load boards can make a significant difference in streamlining your operations.

So, how do you decide which load boards are the most reliable and offer the best value? We’re about to delve into that, laying bare the myths and revealing the hidden gems.

How Do Truckers Find Loads?

Before discussing load boards, it’s worth understanding the other avenues that truckers can explore to find loads. Traditional methods like networking and direct contracts still play a part. Additionally, freight brokers can be an invaluable resource; they do the legwork to match truckers with shippers.

However, as a small business owner running a fleet, you might not always have the luxury of time or expansive networks. That’s why many are turning to load boards as a more tech-savvy and efficient alternative. These platforms not only streamline the process but also provide options often not visible through conventional means, making them an excellent choice for carriers.

What Is a Load Board?

A load board is an online marketplace designed to cater to various types of trucks and cargoes. Shippers post loads they need to move, and carriers post their available equipment and routes. Whether you specialize in box trucks or are an owner-operator, you’re likely to find a load board optimized for your needs.

Business owners often find that using a load board can be a strategic move for increasing their cash flow. Load boards can provide quick, sometimes immediate, job opportunities. By reducing downtime, you’re effectively driving up your revenue, an essential part of improving the cash flow of your trucking company.

However, not all load boards are created equal. Factors like user interface, subscription fees, and the quality of job postings can vary, making it crucial to choose the best load boards for your specific needs.

Given that it’s 2024, updates and new features have been added to many boards, affecting which platforms could be considered the best load boards of 2024. That said, using a load board is just one piece of the puzzle. To fully optimize your operations, it’s crucial to understand how to leverage the best load boards effectively.

How Do Load Boards Work?

These online matchmakers between shippers and carriers have become the most popular source for securing loads for a good reason. They’re flipping the script on how truckers find loads and how businesses like yours can keep those wheels turning. But, what’s the nitty-gritty of it all?

Setting up on a load board is almost like creating a social media profile—only this one makes you money. You plug in your details, like the type of loads you’re looking for, where you operate, and voila! You’re greeted with a list of available gigs that fit your profile—without cold calls or dealing with a middleman. And you can search for jobs based on anything—cargo type, payment, or other relevant filters.

If you’re a dispatcher managing a fleet of trucks, this is a dream come true. You can scan, bid, and lock in loads before finishing your morning coffee. Some of the best load boards for dispatchers even offer real-time updates and mobile apps to keep you in the loop 24/7.

Still concerned about the quality of the loads or the credibility of the shipper? Good news—most load boards have rating systems or reviews, like those star ratings you check before buying anything online.

You can learn a lot about a potential partner by reading what other truckers have to say. So if you’re wondering “What is the best load board for my needs?”, don’t forget to check out the reviews and features that matter to you.

Are Load Boards Worth It?

Okay, so load boards sound cool, but is it worth ditching your old ways? Absolutely, especially if you’re a small business owner with more on your plate than you can handle. The traditional approach of networking or direct contracts isn’t bad, but let’s be honest—it’s more time-consuming and less efficient.

A load board is extremely handy in the hectic world of shipping. But it’s only as useful as you make it. Knowing how to use a load board is key. Keep an eye on those ratings, know your numbers before placing a bid, and always make sure to read the payment terms.

While there’s a fee to join some of the premium platforms, the returns can be well worth the investment. When evaluating costs, consider what you’re getting in return—fast, reliable loads that can fill your truck and boost your revenue.

Speaking of which, if you’re a freight broker, you’re in luck. Some of the best load boards for freight brokers come with additional bells and whistles like credit checks and assistance with paperwork. You might also want to explore freight factoring services.

Best Load Boards Every Trucker Should Know About

Navigating load boards can be a daunting task for anyone in the trucking industry, whether you’re an owner-operator, a dispatcher, or a freight broker.

Load boards are indispensable tools that help various stakeholders in the industry find the right match for their needs, be it cargo or carriers. However, not all load boards are created equal.

For 2024, here are our top picks for the best load boards.

1. DAT

DAT stands as a prominent freight marketplace in North America, heavily relied upon for its extensive data analytics and market trends. Founded in 1979, DAT has tailored its services to meet the unique needs of carriers and brokers through distinct load boards: DAT TruckersEdge for carriers, DAT Power for carriers and brokers, and DAT Express for brokers. Each business day, DAT TruckersEdge lists an incredible one million loads, offering truckers a wide range of opportunities.

The platform also features unrestricted searches and a convenient load count by state to help truckers optimize their earning potential. If you subscribe to their premium plan, TruckersEdge, you can access loads in both the U.S. and Canada.

Pricing: Plans range from $39.95 to $125 per month. Special offers are available for new subscribers.

2. DirectFreight

DirectFreight distinguishes itself by its streamlined design. The site offers only two primary options: searching for loads (for truckers) and searching for trucks (for brokers).

Though simple, the platform is packed with features like full credit reports on shippers, timely weather updates, deadhead and trip miles info, and immediate alerts for matching loads.

Pricing: A single rate of $34.95 per month for access to all features.

3. 123Loadboard

123Loadboard provides real-time updates on the latest available loads. It boasts an impressive annual load posting of nearly 54 million and offers trucking opportunities worth more than $100 million.

The platform’s basic plan offers essential features like 24/7 web and mobile access to loads. More advanced plans include innovative features such as a load planning tool, credit score information, and instant payment options through freight factoring.

Pricing: Plans start at $35 per month and go up to $55 per month, with a 10-day free trial available for each.

4. C.H. Robinson Navisphere

C.H. Robinson offers a tech-savvy load board called Navisphere. This platform lets you book loads quickly, cutting down on emails and phone calls. Upon sign-up, you’re in their Carrier Advantage Program, which offers rewards and fuel savings. You’ll need standard carrier documentation and certain insurance levels to join.

Pricing: Totally free to use.

5. TruckStop

TruckStop offers various plans that cater to carriers, brokers, and shippers. Even their basic package comes with decision-making tools like truck-to-load ratio metrics and filter options to help you find the best loads.

Higher-tier packages offer exclusive features like side-by-side load comparison and access to the highest-paying loads in real-time.

Pricing: Plans range from $39 to $149 per month.

6. Trucker Path

Trucker Path is known for its budget-friendly options, with a free access tier available. Despite its affordability, it does not compromise on quality.

The basic package offers unlimited searches and access to brokers’ credit scores. More advanced plans include features like a Fuel Surcharge Calculator and real-time day rate checks.

Pricing: After the free plan, the plans range from $16.67 to $74.99 per month.

7. Amazon Relay

Want to work directly with Amazon? Check out Amazon Relay. This platform, active since 2017, lets truckers and small fleet owners find and take on Amazon loads easily. You’ll need an active DOT and MC number, along with specific insurance requirements, to get started. Most routes are regional, so you’ll be home more often. Plus, the mobile app makes life on the road easier.

Pricing: Free, once you’re approved to join.


If you’re in the game of minimizing downtime and maximizing revenue, load boards are your new best friend. If you’re asking which are the best freight load boards or the best load boards for carriers, there’s something for everyone. It all comes down to what you need and how you make the most of these platforms. Start streamlining our operations today by trying out one of our recommended load boards.

Best Load Boards for Truckers FAQs

What are the best load boards in 2024?

In 2024, the landscape of load boards has evolved to offer more features, reliability, and efficiency than ever before. If you’re a trucker, a freight broker, or a small fleet owner looking for the most effective ways to optimize your operations, some of the best load boards are DAT, DirectFreight, 123Loadboard, C.H. Robinson Navisphere, TruckStop, Trucker Path, and Amazon Relay.

What are the best hotshot load boards?

In 2024, hotshot trucking remains a lucrative but competitive segment of the logistics industry. For hotshot carriers seeking to maximize their earnings while finding reliable gigs, several load boards stand out as particularly useful: DAT, 123Loadboard, and Uship.

What are some of the best free load boards?

Navigating the world of trucking logistics can get expensive, so finding a load board that doesn’t break the bank is a big plus for many truckers. If you’re on the hunt for reliable yet cost-effective platforms, TruckerPath, TruckStop, and Amazon Relay are among the best free load boards in 2024.