We recently drove past a few Intercape Freightliner trucks and decided to gain more insights with regards to the expansion of Intercape into the road freight industry.

Has COVID-19 and the economic pressures around the pandemic expedited the move into the freight sector?

We already started building towards this new venture during an EXCO breakaway in 2019 where we decided to diversify into the freight industry. Covid 19 and the different levels of restrictions enforced onto our industry drove us to speed up the process.

What have been the major benefits of years of experience in passenger freight with Intercape Bus Services for the move towards road freight?

With 40 years of experience in the luxury coach industry, it definitely helped us make a smooth transition towards the freight side. We have learned hard lessons throughout the years and developed the best in-house systems to suit our specific needs allowing us to make the changes needed to accommodate the freight side very easily.

We have invested a lot in our infrastructure over the years with depots across South Africa allowing us to utilize the synergies of our existing business model. We will make use of the same cornerstones that our core business has been built on to ensure we deliver a Safe, Dependable, Affordable service

What are the major differences in operating a service for Passenger Freight as compared to Road Freight?

I do believe there is quite a few similarities rather than differences. There is definitely a huge supply of operators in the industry just as with the coach industry making pricing very competitive.

Adapting to the unknown of tomorrow took a while to get used to. With coaches you have a fixed schedule which allowed for easy planning. With Intercape known for its reputable safety record, we were overwhelmed with the amount of enquires we received for our new services without advertising.

Which of the safety lessons learnt could also be transferred to Intercape Freightliner?

We practise exactly the same standard of safety as we do with our coaches! No truck or trailer will leave our depot without a full inspection and brake test. Our state of the art depot facilities across South Africa allows us to ensure we can do this regularly and not only when such a vehicle visits Pretoria or Cape Town.

Any negative impact on the freight side will have a definite impact on our core business as well, so there will be no slacking on the safety side. All drivers as with Intercape drivers attend our accredited training academy as well as training offered by Mercedes on the specific vehicles.

All vehicles are tracked and monitored 24/7 by our skilled operations team ensuring the safety and punctuality of our clients’ precious cargo.

Have the Freightliner businesses added to the existing accounts with service providers for Telematics or Insurance etc or did Intercape have to seek new partners to provide these services?

We have been fortunate and privileged with all our current service providers supporting us to make this dream come true. Without them and their continuous support throughout this journey, it would not be possible to have implemented our new business at such a pace.

Would Intercape envisage to transport freight across all existing routes used by the bus services? Would this include transport across borders?

Other than with the coach industry there is no fixed scheduled route, therefore we cater for your specific needs and required destinations across South Africa.

We will definitely consider cross border as we start to expand our fleet and expand our footprint.

Contact us at freightliner@intercape.co.za | 021 380 4455 | or visit us at www.intercapefreightliner.co.za to get moving.