There are several authority types. Authority is broken down by type (“common”, “contract” and “broker”) and commodity (“property except for household goods”, “household goods” and “passenger”).
- Common carriers are essentially companies that are open to the public for hire.
- Contract carriers only serve businesses with whom they have– you guessed it– a contract!
- Brokers merely arrange for transportation but don’t actually take possession of a shipment.
- General commodities are classified as “Property Except Household Goods”, while the personal effects of a homeowner are considered “Household Goods”
- Most carriers that operate bus companies or van services are required to have “Passenger” authority.
- There is also ‘freight forwarder’ authority. Freight Forwarders are essentially travel agents for freight who arrange for motor carrier, ocean and/or air transportation to get freight from Point A to Point B.