Essential elements of transport

Business studies study module

In order for a transport system to function efficiently it should have certain basic elements. These elements are:

  1. Unit(S) of carriage
  2. Methods of propulsion
  3. Ways
  4. Terminals(terminus)

Unit(S) of carriage

This refers to anything i.e. vessel that is used to transport goods and people from one place to another. Units of carriage include: ships, trains, aeroplanes, motor vehicles, bicycles and carts. Units of carriage are also referred to as means of transport.

Methods of propulsion

This is the driving force (source of power) that makes a unit of carriage to move.The power for most vessels may be petroleum products, electricity, human force or animal power.


It refers to either the route or path passes the vessel. The route can be on land, on water or through air. Examples of ways are roads, railways, paths, canals, seaways and airways. The ways can be classified into either natural ways or manmade ways.

  1. Natural ways-As the name suggests, natural ways are the ways that are provided nature. They are therefore free to acquire. They include airways and seaways.
  2. Man-made ways-These are ways that are made available human being. They include roads, canals and railways. Manmade ways are usually expensive to construct and maintain.

Terminals (terminuses)

The vessel used to carry goods and people starts from one destination and ends up at another. At these destinations the loading and off-loading take place respectively. The loading and off-loading places are referred to as terminals or terminus. Examples of terminuses are bus stations, airports and seaports.

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