It's a $200 order for 5000 ping pong balls from Alibaba. Any idea how much I have to pay to get them to Illinois after the FOB point?
It depends on your port of origin.
For example. I can pay 6 dollars a cardboard tube in Chicago and pay 9k to ship it to Florida, or 9 dollars a tube and 1k to Florida.
There are shipping dead zones in the US. Nevada, Utah, and Florida being major players. Get with a freight broker and talk to them. Do not use Freightbroker dot com. They will quote you a price, then increase it multiple times in "fees"
If it comes in from some place like San Diego or Long Beach and it is going to some place like Chicago, and you are willing to wait for it, you can get pallet loads as low as 50 dollars. If it is coming in at a place like say, Seattle and going to bumfuck South Dakota, you might be paying 400 dollars a pallet slot.
Freight is all about your classification. NMFC code 50 is by far cheapest. If you are in the midwest, check out NM Freight and CXI Trucking. Local loads, on NMFC 50, I pay right around 35 dollars a pallet space.
That said, I priced a load the other day from Chicago to Orlando Florida (a place where trucks go to die) at 900 dollars per 48x120 pallet. Freight is all about location, and beyond that, think like a trucking company. After they drop off my 35 pallets, how far do they have to go to grab another Connex? THAT determines your price