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Container shipping Rotterdam to Colombo

You are planning to ship a container from Rotterdam to Colombo (LKCMB)? Sea freight is very practical: you can ship heavy cargo for a good price, it is flexible much more environmental friendly than air freight. Ship a container overseas with refrigerated cargo or personal goods is very easy with e.g. Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC). When you want to forward a container, you can choose from different types of containers. An important point of attention is a full container for yourself (FCL) and (LCL) and partial shipments. Via our transport agents you will find actual information about international transport Colombo (LK CMB). You can read useful information about the different types of sea containers. Besides this we share a practical step-by-step plan. Send us your details and we will gladly send you a tailor-made offer with market prices.

  • Ocean shipping is a quick, secure and cost-effective way to ship high volume products.
  • When you compare it with air shipments, it is cheaper and there are less restrictions.
  • Sea freight is a solution for international removals and the transit of fruit or cars.
  • The Port of Colombo is one of the most important ports in Sri Lanka.
  • You can choose from many types and sizes of containers: 20 FT, 40 FT, 40FT HC and Flat Rack, Dry Van, Hard-Top, Tank, Open-Top, Ventilated containers.

Shipping to Colombo (LKCMB) from Rotterdam (NLRTM)

shipping container from port rotterdam  to port of Colombo

Ocean freight shipping is a cost-effective option to ship goods internationally. Your cargo is packed in shipping containers. Your freight forwarder have a special container prepared. The cargo is transported by truck to the shipping vessel at the port of departure Colombo (LK CMB), and will be shipped over the ocean to the importer at the arrival port. You can choose for: port-to-port, door-to-port, port-to-door or door-to-door. In the following paragraph we share important information about the port of arrival.

Port of departurePort of Rotterdam (NLRTM)
Country of departureNetherlands
Port of destinationPort of Colombo
Country of destinationSri Lanka
Port CodeLKCMB
Transportation time+/- 32 days
Shipping rates$$$
Port addressNo. 19, Chaithya Road, P. O. Box 59, Colombo 01, Sri Lanka
Phone number94-112421201

Freight Forwarder Rotterdam – port of Colombo

  1. Select shipment details

    Enter the port of origin and the arrival port. Decide if you will ship a full container for yourself (FCL) or Less Container Load (LCL). Also choose the size of the container (20ft, 40ft of 40ft HC).

  2. Pack you load

    Obviously, make sure your goods are tightly packaged. To limit damage, we advise you to use pallets. Tip: make sure you have recognizable labels on the freight.

  3. Export documents

    If you are going to transport cargo to Colombo (LKCMB), you will have to provide special export documents (for the purpose of national customs): packing list, bill of lading, certificates of origin, commercial invoice, export/import customs declaration. The definition of a Bill of Lading is a document that is completed by a carrier describing the correct state of goods and confirm that the items are well packed for shipment.

  4. Make a choice for Incoterms

    Incoterms are important to agree on the most important contractual terms and obligations for global trade. The Incoterm states who is responsible for e.g transit, insurance and customs clearance. Frequently used incoterms are Cost, Insurance Freight (CIF), Ex Works (EXW), Delivery Duty Paid (DDP).

  5. Track and Trace shipment

    Use sea freight tracking to check where your load is right now. They will send you a mail when the vessel is departed from the port of origin (POO), has arrived at the destination (POD) and when it has arrived at the final destination.

Sea freight from Colombo (LKCMB) to Rotterdam (NLRTM): find a suitable container

You are going to ship a container from port of Colombo – (LK CMB) to port of Rotterdam – (NL RTM)? The first step is to pick the right container type. There are different sizes (20 ft, 40 ft) and all kind of container conditions (FCL shipping or LCL shipment). Some main shipping lines are APL, CMA CGM, Evergreen, Hanjin, Hapag-Lloyd, K Line, Maersk, MOL, MSC, NYK, OOCL, ZIM. Major towns near the seaport are Colombo, Kolonnawa, Hendala, Peliyagoda, Kelaniya, Kotte, Wattala, Kotikawatta, Battaramulla, Mulleriyawa, Ragama, Maharagama, Kandana, Moratuwa, Homagama, Gampaha, Katunayaka, Minuwangoda, Negombo, Horana. In the section below we help you choose the right type and provide info about the most popular types in the maritime industry. We are happy to provide you with more information about Cars transport.

from harbor Colombo LK CMB to rotterdam NL RTM

Details of a 20 FT container

20 foot containers (also known as dry van) is the most commonly used and most commonly available size. They are easy to load, access, and handle, which means they are cheaper to ship. Suitable for different kinds of storage including personal effects and international removals. Keep in mind: The acronym TEU stands for Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit.

  • The most commonly used box for sending goods with transport ships.
  • The dimensions of a 20-foot container are: 5,9 x 2,4 x 2,4 meter.
  • It can hold between 9 and 11 pallets.
  • You can load it with maximum +/- 27.700 kg.

Details of a 40ft container

The 40 foot container is the big brother of the 20 foot model. Many types of goods can be shipped within these boxes. It is especially intended for transporting large loads by sea. In conclusion, you can also choose a higher ‘high cube’ version. Thereby you have a little more height. This ensures that your cargo/goods can be loaded higher.

  • Perfect for larger shipments.
  • The format is almost always the same: 12200 mm × 2440 mm × 2590 mm.
  • It can hold 23-24 Euro pallets or 20-21 standard pallets in one row.
  • In terms of weight fits maximum: +/- 28.000 kg.

Ocean Freight Volume Calculator: 40 / 20 Ft Sea Container Shipping Cost

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What are the advantages and disadvantages of FCL containers?

f you have enough goods to fill one full container load, then you can book your own full container. Freight forwarders then refer to it as FCL (Full Container Load). You don’t need to share your container with anyone else. It is a popular transport method: ideal transit time, chance of damage is reduced to a minimum and it’s more cost-effective. Of course there are also downsides: it is expensive for small loads and insurance is extra important. Sending the sea freight from another port? Also see Antwerp to Colombo (LKCMB) and Hamburg to Colombo (LKCMB).

  • FCL means that you temporarily own a complete container.
  • Used by all major manufacturers and shipping companies.
  • Economically viable when the shipment occupies 15 m3 or more.
  • Available at: e.g. COSCO, Hapag-Lloyd, MSC, Maersk, CMA CGM.

What is the meaning of LCL container?

If you do not need a full container, a shared container can be used. Logistics experts treat that as a LCL (Less Than Container Load) agreement. LCL means that multiple shippers’ goods are packed together. You consciously opt for various benefits such as: you can send some good in a cheap way, you spend less on inventory warehousing space and easy time-management and scheduling. Pay attention: if you have a cargo load that is more than half a container unit, then FCL is a better choice. The shipping rates are based on the dimensions and weight of the cargo.

  • What we mean by LCL is that your cargo will be placed into a partial container.
  • Ideal for transport volumes between 2,5 m3 – 14,5 m3.
  • You only pay for the space you are using.
  • Can be booked via practical all shipping lines.
  • Available at: e.g. Wan Hai, Yang Ming, ZIM, POL, HMM.

Alternative container types

There are many different types of boxes available for international cargo shipping. Each type of cargo has its own characteristics and methods. The most common type is the Dry van. There are specially developed transport options for liquid bulk, grain, flour, or unique high value cargo. We give a short explanation below. We also provide more information about sea transportation to Annaba (DZAAE), port of Liverpool (GBLIV), Dalian (CNDLC) harbor and terminal Taranto (ITTAR).

  • Bulk Containers: very suitable for dry bulk goods such as wheat and other grain crops.
  • Flat Rack Containers: it is flat and cargo can be loaded either from the sides or from the top.
  • Hard-Top Containers: for shipping a wide range of dry cargo and mass freight.
  • High-Cube Containers: similar in structure to standard containers, but taller.
  • Insulated Containers: for e.g. pharmaceutical products, fresh produce, beverages, frozen goods, and chemicals.
  • Open-Top Containers: have an open top covered by a tarpaulin instead of a solid roof.
  • Palletwide Containers: are non-standard, uncommon containers with varying dimensions.
  • Refrigerated Containers: reefers maintain a stable temperature inside.
  • Tank Containers: are used to deliver hazardous and non-hazardous products.
  • Ventilated Containers: are fitted with additional ventilation holes.

Main types of ocean freight: What do you want to ship?

Exporting load by ocean from Rotterdam (NLRTM) to Colombo (LKCMB) has a lot of pluses: low maintenance cost, it is great for transporting bulky goods and eco-friendly. The most important ocean cargo transported by sea include: roll on/roll off, dry bulk, liquid bulk, break bulk, containerized. You can read more about it in the section below.

  • Car shipping: have your vehicle shipped to an international port.
  • House Moving: affordable and reliable way for international relocations.
  • Removals (Household Goods): all your household effects shipped inexpensive and insured.
  • Liquid Bulk: e.g. biofuels, hydrogen, chemicals, gasoline, diesel, kerosene.
  • Dry Bulk: coal, iron ore, grain but also stuff like salt, rods, cement, sand.
  • Roll on Roll off (RORO): a vessel transporting wheeled cargo (cars/trucks,trailers,etc).
  • Breakbulk: small containers of freight are unloaded from pallets and packed into the ship’s hold.
  • Retail & other: goods like clothes, electronic goods, sports equipment, art and antiques, toys and furniture, drinks, food, shoes, machines.

FAQ: Frequently asked questions about international transport

How many days are needed to ship from Rotterdam to Colombo?

Shipping a container from Rotterdam (NL) to Colombo takes approximately 32 days. The ship has to cover a distance of about 7700 nautical miles (NM). This is roughly equivalent to 14260 km. If you ship something by sea, you have to pay close attention to ETD and ETA. ETD means the expected departure time of the vessel. Estimated time of arrival (ETA) is the date and time that a shipment is predicted to arrive. The exact shipping time has several factors: the boat speed, weather conditions and berth availability.

What are the costs of a shipping container to Colombo (LKCMB)?

Shipping rates from Rotterdam (Netherlands) to Colombo (Sri Lanka) are slightly above average. The total cost depends on important aspects like type of goods transported, the total distance to the delivery destination and the Incoterms you have agreed on. Fill in the request form for the best rates and current transit times.

What customs documents are required for international shipping?

When you are exporting goods to Colombo, then there are some important customs clearance documents. The following documents are required: Bill of Lading, Certificate of Origin, Import/export Licenses, Commercial Invoice, Insurance Certificate, Packing List. For more information, you can contact the customs of Sri Lanka or navigate to the website of the port or the government (

What Incoterm should i use?

Incoterms define the responsibilities of sellers and buyers for the delivery of goods under sales contracts. Two of the most common Incoterms are FOB and CIF. CIF (Cost, Insurance and Freight) means the exporting party arranges the carriage of the goods up to the agreed port. By Free on Board (FOB) we mean the seller takes care of the freight until all cargo is on the ship. Optionally one can also select one of the other Incoterms 2000 such as Free Carrier (FCA), Carriage Paid To (CPT), Free Alongside Ship (FAS), Ex Works (EXW) & Delivered At Place (DAP), Cost and Freight (CFR), Delivered at Place Unloaded (DPU).

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