Shipping Container Numbers

All shipping containers have identifying numbers (ISO 6346), below is a diagram of what the container numbers look like and what each set of numbers/letters mean. 

container number diagram

Owner Code

The first three digits of the container number identify the Owner Code. The owner code refers to the company that owns and operates the container. Below is a list of container codes associated to shipping companies worldwide:

Carrier Name  (Abbreviated)Carrier NameSCAC code
ACLAtlantic Container LineACLU
AliancaAliancaANRM
AMLAlaska Marine LinesAKMR
ANLAustralia National LineANNU
APLAmerican President LinesAPLU
ArkasArkas Container Transport S.A.ARKU
ARRCAtlantic Ro-Ro Carriers IncAROF
BahriBahri / National Shipping Company of Saudi ArabiaNSAU
BCLBermuda Container LineBCLU
CGLCentral Gulf Lines, IncCEGL
CCNICompagnia Chilena de Navigacion Interoceanica SACNIU
CHIPOLBROKChinese-Polish Joint Stock Shipping CompanyCPJQ
CMA CGMCompagnie Maritime d Affretement Compagnie Generale MaritimeCMDU
CNC LineCheng Lie Navigation Co.,Ltd11DX
COSCOCOSCO Container LinesCOSU
CrowleyCrowleyCMCU/CAMN
CSAVCompania Sud Americana de VaporesCHIW
CSAV NorasiaCSAV NorasiaNSLU
CSCLChina Shipping Container Lines CoCHNJ
DelmasDelmasDAAE
DoleDole Ocean Cargo ExpressDOLQ
Ecuadorian LineEcuadorian LineEQLI
EimskipEimskipEIMU/EIMW
EmiratesEmirates Shipping LineESPU
EukorEukorEUKO
EvergreenEvergreen LineEGLV
FESCOFar Eastern Shipping CompanyFESO
GALGalborgGFAL
Grieg StarGrieg Star ShippingACSU
GrimaldiGrimaldiGRIU
GSLGold Star Line Ltd.GSLU
GWFGreat White FleetUBCU
GESGreat Eastern Shipping Inc.GESC
HAMBURG SUDHamburg SudSUDU
Hapag LloydHapag Lloyd Container Line/A>HLCU
HMMHyundai Merchant Marine Co., Ltd.HDMU
HoeghHoegh AutolinersHUAU
HorizonHorizon LinesHRZU
Hyde ShippingHyde ShippingHYDU
ICLIndependent Container LineIILU
IMCIndustrial Maritime Carriers (Intermarine)IDMC
Interocean LinesInterocean LinesINOC
K LineKawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd.KKLU
King OceanKing Ocean SerciesKOSL
KMTCKorea Marine Transport Co., Ltd.KMTU
LibraCompanhia Libra de NavegacaoCLIB
LGLLiberty Global Logistics, LLCLGLT
Linea MessinaLinea MessinaLMCU
MaerskMaersk LineMAEU
MarfretMarfret Compagnie MaritimeMFTU
MarubaMarubaMRUB
MatsonMatsonMATS
MCCMCC Transport Pte. Ltd.MCCQ
MISCMalaysia International Shipping Corporation BerhadMISC
MSCMediterranean Shipping CompanyMSCU
NDSNile Dutch Africa LineNIDU
NeptuneNeptune Shipping LineNOSU
NordanaNordana LineNODA
Ocean Network ExpressOcean Network Express (ONE Line)ONEY
OOCLOrient Overseas Container Line Ltd.OOLU
PHTPasha Hawaii Transport LinesPSHI
PILPacific International LinesPCIU
PMOPM&O LinesPMOL
PLPolynesia LinePLLU
Rickmers LineRickmers LinieRCKI
SafmarineSafmarineSAFM
SallaumSallaum LinesSLAQ
SAMSamskip, Inc.SKII
SCIThe Shipping Coporation of India Ltd.SCIU
Seaboard MarineSeaboard MarineSMLU
SeaFreightSeaFreight LineSEFN
SeagoSeago LineSEJJ
Siem CarSiem Car Carriers ASSCYE
SinokorSinokor Merchant Marine Co.,LtdSKLU
SwireSwire ShippingCHVW
TSThorco ShippingTHZS
TSCTOHO Shipping Co., LtdTOHO
TOTTOTE MaritimeTOTE
TurkonTurkon Line IncTRKU
UALUniversal Africa LinesUALC
USLUS LinesUSLU
WECWest European Container LinesWECU
WestwoodWestwood Shipping LinesWWSU
WHLWan Hai Lines22AA
WLSWorld Logistics Service (USA) IncWDLS
WWLWallenius Wilhelmsen LogisticsWLWH
YMLYang Ming LineYMLU
ZIMZIM Integrated Shipping Services LtdZIMU

Category Identifier

The 4th number is the category identifier. 

  • U for all freight containers
  • J for detachable freight container-related equipment
  • Z for trailers and chassis

Serial Number

The serial number container 6 numbers, assigned by the owner or operator. The container number is uniquely identifying within the owner or operators fleet.

Check Number

A check digit is used to detect errors in an intermodal shipping container number

Learn how to check your container numbers (HERE)

 

Or use the check digit calculator (HERE)

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