Types Of Shipping Containers

Shipping containers have come a long way since they were first invented and revolutionized the shipping industry. Today, there are all shapes and types of shipping containers available. Find out more about each type of container so that you can choose the best one for your requirements.


Dry van shipping containers are the big metal shipping containers usually seen stacked on ships and in ports. Standard shipping containers might have different door configurations depending on its use.

This is the standard shipping container with one set of double doors that seal shut. These containers are the most commonly used shipping container for transporting cargo by sea, land, or rail. They also make great storage containers.

A dry van shipping container with double doors both ends is like a standard shipping container except that it has double doors both ends. This makes it extremely useful for loading and unloading contents because one can enter on the one side and exit on the other. It is also known as a tunnel container.

Most standard dry van shipping containers can also be High Cubes. A High Cube shipping container is 1 foot higher ( 9 foot 6 inches high) higher than a standard dry van (8 foot 6 inches). The extra foot higher provides more vertical space and also makes the container feel less “boxy.” This makes it ideal for modifications and builds.

Refrigerated shipping containers, also known as Reefers, are insulated shipping containers that are used to transport temperature-sensitive cargo. They are usually fitted with a refrigeration unit of sorts that controls the temperature inside the container.

Working refrigerated shipping containers are insulated containers that are used to transport products that are already chilled, frozen, or deep-frozen and need to be maintained at a constant temperature between -15°F to 60°F. They can be installed on-premise as extra cold storage or kept on a chassis for easy transport.

Insulated non-working refrigerated shipping containers are refrigerated containers that no longer have a working refrigeration unit. They usually have one set of double doors on the end.
Non-working refrigerated shipping containers are also known as insulated containers or non-operating reefer containers (NOR).


Specialty shipping containers are containers that have been adapted to transport unusual cargo that won’t fit inside the typical big metal shipping containers. From transporting over-sized machinery to liquids, there’s a speciality container for every need.

Flat Rack shipping containers (collapsible and non-collapsible) are special containers that are used to transport bulky or heavy cargo. They usually only have a wall at the front and the back of the container but are also available without walls.

An open side shipping container with double doors on one end is like the fully-enclosed standard metal shipping containers except that one of its sides has bi-fold doors instead of a wall. The additional bi-fold doors can be opened on one side or completely opened and removed. It’s also known as a side access container, full-side access container, or a side-opening storage container.


An open top shipping container is like a standard container except that it does not have a metal roof. Instead, it has a weatherproof tarpaulin roof and removable roof bows. These shipping containers are useful for loading bulky or tall cargo that’s usually lifted on a crane. They have a greater capacity than standard dry vans because of the removable roof.

Duo-Con shipping containers are specially constructed 20-foot containers that are designed to be cut in half into two 10-foot containers. Once the Duo-Con arrives, it is cut in half along the special panel to form the two 10-foot containers. Duo-Cons are supplied with the front walls which need to be welded onto the containers to form the metal box so that it’s a standard 10-foot shipping container.


Tank containers, also called intermodal ISO tanks, are special stainless steel shipping containers that are used to transport bulk liquids, gas, and powders. They can be used for hazardous and non-hazardous products. The tank is usually fitted into an ISO frame that is manufactured according to internationally recognized standards.


Shipping container chassis are special trailers that are designed to transport shipping containers. The most common chassis’s transport 20, 40, 45-foot containers, and 53-foot High Cube containers.

Get The Right Shipping Container To Transport Your Cargo
By Calling 1-888-667-4834 or Clicking Here To Request A Quote.

Select the fields to be shown. Others will be hidden. Drag and drop to rearrange the order.
  • Image
  • SKU
  • Add to cart
  • Dimensions