An Auction and Marketplace for Shipping and Cargo Containers

New and Used Shipping Container Prices

12.10.2014 - Posted by Updated On 12.10.2014    

Shipping container prices vary greatly by location, condition, and size, and depending on your needs you can spend anywhere from around $800 to $5000 and up. As with most purchases, the price is the intersection of needs and budget.

Container Location and Price

Depending on where you live, or better yet where you need the container to be located, price can have a big impact on the cost of a shipping container. Port cities such as Los Angeles, Oakland, and Newark have a regular flow of containers coming through them, and lots of distribution centers to unload them. That means that there are a lot of containers either repositioned out of these ports and depots, or they are sold off into the secondary market. If you're in an area not close to a port or major hub, you will most likely end up spending a more for your container. Common logic is that buying a container at the port may seem like a better deal, but someone still needs to pay the transportation cost to get it to your location.

Shipping Container Condition and Price

The condition of the container, as you would expect, has a great impact on the price. New containers, often called “one trip containers” are the most expensive. They're called on trippers because they've only been used one time. Most containers are manufactured in China, loaded with goods, and moved across the Pacific Ocean to the United States, making them essentially new. New containers come equipped with welded on lock boxes and high locking gear and doors handles, which is ideal for storage use. Used containers can range in age from five years to 15 years or more. Given that most containers are leased to a shipping line for their first five years, it's rare to find a container for sale that's 2-4 years old. Used containers can come in any range of conditions, from cargo worthy to "as is, where is". If you need a wind and water tight unit for storage, you may want new shipping containers
to avoid getting an ASIS unit, or at the very least take the time to inspect it thoroughly. Used containers are often painted to match the shipping line or leasing company that once owned them, have no lock box, and low locking gear.

Shipping Container Size and Price

The larger the shipping container the higher the price is typically true (but not always). Manufacturing and materials costs have are the driving force behind price, but a 40' shipping container isn't double the price of a 20' container. On top of this, specialty containers such as duo-cons and double doors will typically cost more due to limited usage by the shipping lines and that they're typically always new. When does a 40' container cost the same or less than a 20' container? There could be two factors that cause this. First, if there's an excess inventory of 40's and the price is driven down below the price of a 20' container. The second can be a subset of the first, but it's based on storage costs and how quickly the container can either be sold or put back on lease. Leasing lines are careful at managing costs and inventory supply, and have complex formulas to decide when and where to sell containers to either maximize profits or limit losses.

used shipping containers

The price of shipping containers ranges greatly, but there is typically logic and usually some type of formula behind the pricing structure. The older the container is, the lower the price. The closer the container is to the port, the lower the price. The size and speciality of the container also drives the price, however factors such as supply can cause this logic to break. For current shipping container prices in your area visit and search for containers in your area. marketplace specializes in selling new and used shipping containers around the United States, Canada, and other parts of the world. If you are a buyer looking for a shipping container of any type, the sellers listed on our site will be able to help you find the best container at the best price. If you're a container leasing company or shipping line and interested in expanding your market or using our commercial container trading software to stream line your business, we have solutions for you also, just contact us at to ask for more information.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Similar Articles