Why no Expedia for freight shipping?

For topics on Class I and II passenger and freight operations more general in nature and not specifically related to a specific railroad with its own forum.

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Why no Expedia for freight shipping?

Postby SouthernRailway » Sat Jul 21, 2018 12:46 pm

If I want to get from point A to point B, it's easy: I just go to Expedia.com and type in the departure city and the arrival city, and flights from a variety of airlines appear, with prices, and I can book them on that site. I can also try Google, and it shows even more: every single step to get from one address to another, including driving times, public transportation and more from an address in one location to an address in another city.

Question: Why doesn't freight shipping have one website that you can check for rates, shipment times, etc. and book the shipment on one website?

For example, if I have a business and want to ship something:

1. I can go to FedEx.com or UPS.com and handle the shipment there.
2. If I want to ship by rail, I can to to nscorp.com or another railroad website and email the railroad for shipment rates. That's cumbersome.
3. I understand that there are truck brokers that I can contact to handle a truck shipment.

Why don't railroads team up and develop an Expedia-type website that you can go to, type your origin, destination, date, size/type of shipment and get full details of how to ship it--routing it via rail?

I'd figure that very few people would bother going to nscorp.com and contacting the railroad to ask for a shipment, and going to the hassle of arranging to ship by rail. Freight shippers need an easy, one-stop website where shipments can be handled.
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