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Fair. Transparent. Fair to the polluter.

The congestion surcharge procedure of TRAVECO Transporte AG and WANKO Informationslogistik GmbH

Traveco | Logistik Life | Tour planning | | Article by Christian Schulz
Traveco LKW

Germany/Switzerland: The Corona crisis has also had a massive impact on truck traffic. The number of traffic jams in Germany fell by around 30%, and the time drivers spent in traffic jams by 52%.

Especially in freight traffic, the approaching storm front should already have been recognized. What actually happens when everything returns to "normal"? One thing is certain: Demand, consumption and traffic will increase exponentially again. And so will the cranky customers who wait for a long time because there is another traffic jam. Small reminder: in Germany alone, road users spent more than 520,000! hours in traffic jams, with the approx. 1.4 million kilometers of congestion corresponding to around 35 times the circumfence of the earch.

The factual situation in Switzerland is almost proportional. For the finance- and fairness-savvy Swiss, a fair distribution of congestion costs is therefore also an issue. Swiss hauliers were quick to recognize the high risk factor behind all the figures: the longer a truck is stuck in congestion in the urban centers, the lower its productivity. This can quickly end up in a cost trap for forwarders, because despite a high number of orders, the number of deliveries and thus, if necessary, also the utilization of the trucks becomes problematic. And the fixed costs for the fleet remain unchanged.

The starting point for TRAVECO Transporte AG's considerations was the traffic hotspot around Zurich. Blessed with enormous traffic jams and high waiting times. Nevertheless, Swiss customers also demand a high degree of adherence to delivery dates. A myriad of fixed delivery dates are a particular challenge in "just-in-time" times.

In a first step, Swiss transport companies charged a flat-rate surcharge. This subsequently caused resentment among many customers, because the individual delivery situation was not taken into account. Targets that were easy and quick to achieve were thus hit equally as targets with a high "stop-and-go factor". Understandably, customers felt they were being treated unfairly.

The management of TRAVECO Transporte AG took a different approach from the very beginning and relied on a congestion surcharge based on the polluter-pays principle.
With this idea, TRAVECO approached its long-standing software partner, Wanko Informationslogistik, from Bavaria. Together, a project team was formed, which analyzed, weighted and finally also technically specified the requirements of the parties involved.

The national roads in Switzerland were defined into sections and in turn assigned various parameters, such as the volume of congestion. The definition of the sections was based on past data and the practical assessment of drivers and dispatchers. Precisely because decades of experience were also taken into account, transparent and practical modeling was achieved.
For each shipment, the proportion of impact-prone road sections is continuously determined in the context of the tour. Since the road conditions on individual parts of the route can also change (e.g., when a construction site is closed again), a dynamic procedure is used that also takes these factors into account.

For the final billing at the end of the month, all customer shipments now have fair, comprehensible and transparent costs.
To ensure appropriate controlling, the defined congestion zones are constantly monitored and assessed in cooperation with VIASUISSE (Swiss Competence Center for Traffic Information). Here, too, TRAVECO is one step ahead and is the first mover in Switzerland.

The complete data maintenance is carried out in a newly developed area of the Wanko software suite and thus made it easy for the scheduling department to record changes and process them without interfaces.

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