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Published : December 18, 2023, Updated : January 23, 2024

What Is CBM? Learn How to Calculate CBM for Sea and Air Transport

What Is CBM? Learn How to Calculate CBM for Sea and Air Transport

Did you know that in the vast world of shipping,
understanding CBM (Cubic Meter) is key to efficient and cost-effective transportation? Whether you’re shipping goods by sea or air, calculating CBM plays a crucial role in determining cargo volume and, subsequently, shipping costs. CBM is a fundamental metric used to measure the space occupied by cargo, and mastering its calculation is essential for businesses engaged in international trade.
CBM is particularly significant in sea and air transport,
where space is a premium and maximizing efficiency is paramount. For sea freight,
it helps shippers optimize container space,
ensuring that vessels are loaded to their full capacity. In air transport,
where cargo space is limited,
accurate CBM calculations aid in effective load planning and cost management. In this guide,
we’ll unravel the mysteries of CBM, breaking down the calculation process for both sea and air transport. Whether you’ re a seasoned logistics professional or a newcomer to the shipping industry,
understanding CBM is your ticket to streamlined and cost-efficient cargo transportation. So,
let’s embark on a journey to demystify CBM and empower your shipping endeavors!

What is CBM?

CBM,
or Cubic Meter,
is like a magic box that helps measure how much stuff you can fit into a space. Imagine you’re playing a game of shipping Tetris, trying to figure out the best way to pack your items into a container or a plane. CBM is the tool that tells you exactly how much room your things take up.
It’s like when you’ re moving and want to know if your furniture will fit in the moving truck. CBM does the same for shipping. Whether by sea or air,
it helps calculate the volume of your cargo in a simple way. Just think of it as a giant 3D ruler that measures how much space your things need. So,
when you’re sending a package or a bunch of goods across the world, CBM is your friend. It ensures you use the space wisely, helping you avoid paying for more room than you actually need. It’ s the secret weapon for smart and efficient shipping !

How to Calculate CBM for Sea &
Air Transport?

Calculating CBM (Cubic Meter) for sea and air transport is like figuring out how much space your stuff takes up in a giant shipping box. It’s not as tricky as it sounds! Here’ s a simple guide:

1. Measure

  • For a rectangular box, measure the length, width,and height.
  • If your cargo is an odd shape,
    imagine putting it in a big imaginary box and measure that box.

2. Multiply

  • Multiply the length,
    width,
    and height measurements together.
  • The result is the volume of your cargo in cubic centimeters (cm³).

3. Convert

  • Convert the volume to cubic meters by dividing the result by 1,
    000,
    000 (because there are 1, 000, 000 cubic centimeters in a cubic meter).

4. That’s It!

    • The final number is your CBM.

For example,
if your cargo measures 100 cm x 50 cm x 30 cm:

  • Volume=100 x 50 x 30=150,
    000 cm³
  • CBM=150,
    000 / 1,
    000,
    000=0.15 CBM

Now you know how much space your stuff takes up and can plan your sea or air shipping more efficiently ! It’s like playing cargo Tetris but with a simple math twist.

Determining Chargeable Weight Using Cubic Meter Calculation

Calculating the CBM chargeable weight involves determining the volumetric weight of your shipment,
which is a measure used in shipping to account for the space the package occupies rather than its actual weight. Here’s a straightforward guide:

1. Measure

    • Measure the length,
      width,
      and height of your package in centimeters.

    2. Multiply

    • Multiply these three dimensions together to find the volume in cubic centimeters (cm³).

    3. Convert

    • Convert the volume to cubic meters by dividing the result by 1,
      000,
      000 (because there are 1, 000, 000 cubic centimeters in a cubic meter).

    4. Compare with Weight

    • Compare the volumetric weight (in kilograms) with the actual weight of your package.

    5. Choose the Greater Weight

    • The chargeable weight is the greater of the volumetric weight or the actual weight. If the volumetric weight is higher,
      the shipping cost is calculated based on that weight.

    For example,
    if your package has dimensions that result in a volumetric weight of 2 kg but the actual weight is 1.5 kg,
    the chargeable weight for shipping cost calculations would be 2 kg. This method helps shipping companies account for large,
    lightweight packages that take up more space in a vehicle or plane. It ensures fair pricing based on the space used rather than just the actual weight of the shipment.

    A Simple Guide to Calculating CBM for LCL Shipments in Ocean Freight

    Figuring out the space your stuff occupies in a sea freight container is more important than its weight. When it comes to calculating CBM (Cubic Meter) for Less than Container Load (LCL) shipments in ocean freight,
    it’s quite straightforward. Shipping companies use a simple rule: 1 cubic meter equals about 1000 kilograms.
    So,
    here’s the deal: measure the length, width, and height of your LCL shipment, multiply those numbers, and then divide by 1000. That gives you the CBM, and it’ s this volume that matters more than the actual weight when it comes to space in the sea freight container.

    Demystifying Air Freight Charges: Understanding CBM Calculation and Fair Pricing

    Calculating CBM (Cubic Meter) for air shipments is similar to other freight,
    but in air freight,
    you pay for either the actual weight or the volume weight—whichever is greater. Here’s the easy breakdown: the DIM factor, commonly 1:6000 in air freight, helps convert CBM into volume weight (in kilograms). Just divide 1 CBM by 0.006 to get the volume weight.
    This volume weight matters because air carriers charge based on the weight or volume,
    ensuring fairness. For example,
    if a package is 2m each side with a gross weight of 500kg,
    and the airfreight quote is $1.5 per unit of weight,
    whether actual or volume weight,
    the calculation is simple. CBM is 8,
    and the volume weight is 1333.33 kg. Since the volume weight is higher,
    you pay for that – in this case,
    $1999.5. It’s like making sure that even if your stuff is light, you’ re charged fairly based on the space it takes up in the plane. It’s air shipping math made easy!
    Think of it like making sure you’re not paying for more room than your things actually need. It’ s like playing a space-efficient version of shipping Tetris with your cargo !

    Smart Shipping for Fashion: Simplifying CBM Calculation for Garment Export

    In the world of fashion,
    where clothes travel the globe,
    efficient shipping is crucial. Whether it’s by air or sea, garments are cleverly packed in space-saving cartons. Calculating CBM for these cartons is a breeze. Just measure the carton’ s length,
    width,
    and height in meters,
    plug those numbers into the formula: Length×Breadth×Height×Number of Cartons And there you have it—the total CBM for your fashion-packed package. It’s like playing fashion Tetris, making sure your garments travel smartly and economically across the world!

    Container Basics: Sizes and CBM Simplified

    When it comes to shipping,
    understanding container sizes and their CBMs (Cubic Meters) is key. We usually deal with three standard container sizes: 20ft,
    40ft,
    and 45ft. Let’s break it down:

    20ft Container CBM

    • 20′ Dry Container: 33.0 cbm (Dimensions l:5919 mm, w:2340 mm, h:2380 mm, Weight: 1900 kg)
    • 20′ Reefer Container: 27.5 cbm (Dimensions l:5428 mm, w:2266 mm, h:2240 mm)
    • 20′ Open Top Container: 31.6 cbm (Dimensions l:5919 mm, w:2340 mm, h:2286 mm)
    • 20′ Flat Rack Container: (Dimensions l:5662 mm, w:2438 mm, h:2327 mm)
    • 20′ Collapsable Flat Rack Container: (Dimensions l:5946 mm, w:2126 mm, h:2233 mm)
    • 20′ Open Side/Open Top Container: 31.0 cbm (Dimensions l:5928 mm, w:2318 mm, h:2259 mm)

    40 ft Container CBM

    • 40′ Dry Container : Dimensions: 67.3 cbm (Dimensions l:12045 mm, w:2309 mm, h:2379 mm)
    • 40′ High Cube Dry Container: 76.0 cbm (Dimensions l:12056 mm, w:2347 mm, h:2690 mm)
    • 40′ Reefer Container: 54.9 cbm (Dimensions l:11207 mm, w:2246 mm, h:2183 mm)
    • 40′ High Cube Reefer Container: 66.9 cbm (Dimensions l:11628 mm, w:2294 mm, h:2509 mm)
    • 40′ Open Top Container: 64.0 cbm (Dimensions l:12043 mm, w:2340 mm, h:2272 mm)
    • 40′ Flat Rack Container: (Dimensions l:12080 mm, w:2438 mm, h:2103 mm)
    • 40′ Collapsable Flat Rack Container: (Dimensions l:12080 mm, w:2126 mm, h:2043 mm)

    45 ft Container CBM

    • 45′ High Cube Dry Container: 85.7 cbm (Dimensions l:13582 mm, w:2347 mm, h:2690 mm)
    • 45′ High Cube Reefer Container: 75.4 cbm (Dimensions l:13102 mm, w:2294 mm, h:2509 mm)

    Final Words

    You’ve just unlocked the secrets of CBM in shipping. Whether you’ re navigating the seas or soaring through the skies,
    understanding how to calculate and use Cubic Meters (CBM) is your key to efficient and cost-effective transportation. We’ve explored the importance of CBM in sea and air transport, demystified chargeable weight calculations, and even simplified the process for LCL shipments, garments, and container sizes. Now, armed with this knowledge, you can optimize your shipping, ensuring you pay for the space you use, not more.
    From fashion-forward cartons to massive shipping containers,
    you now have the tools to play the shipping Tetris game wisely. Remember,
    it’s not just about the weight; it’ s about the space. So go ahead,
    embark on your shipping endeavors,
    confident in your ability to calculate CBM like a pro ! Safe travels and smooth shipping adventures await you as you navigate the world of logistics. Until next time,
    happy shipping !

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