Should You Invest in Small Shipping Containers?

20ft containers may be the standard nowadays, but only small shipping containers will accommodate your needs when you have smaller spaces.

If you think a 6- or 8 ft shipping containers are too small, wait until you see how many uses you can get out of them. They offer plenty of solutions and benefits, they’re easy to transport, and they help you cut down on storage costs.

This short guide will comprehensively cover all you need to know about small shipping containers, so you can feel confident about purchasing one.

Let’s begin!

Small Shipping Containers – Types, Sizes, and Dimensions

small one trip containers with lift pockets

The standardized size for a shipping container is a 20-foot shipping container. Start-up businesses and customers with limited on-site space, however, make use of much smaller containers for their convenience.

In this section, I’ll go through the five types of small shipping containers, specifically their dimensions and pricing. This way, I make it easier for you to choose which one is most suitable for your shipping needs.

6ft Container

small shipping containers
6 Ft Shipping Containers

The external length and width of 6ft shipping containers are 6 and 8 feet, respectively. Regarding height, any small shipping container has a high cube (HC) height and a dry van height (DV).

The DV standard height of 6ft containers is 8′ 6″, while its HC height is 9′ 6″. On the other hand, a 6-feet unit’s inner measurements are 5′ 2″ in length and 7′ 8″ in width. The internal DV height is roughly 7′ 9″, and the HC is 8′ 9″.

As for the pricing, an average 6 ft storage container will sell anywhere from $2,100 to $3,400. A more budget-friendly option is to get a used one for $1,350 or $1,450.

7 Ft Containers

7ft small shipping container square feet

7-foot storage containers aren’t quite as common as their 8ft counterparts. Their surface dimensions are 7 and 9 feet, respectively. The outside DV height of a 7ft container is about 8′ 9″, while its HC height is 9′ 9″.

For its inner measurements, the 7ft container is 6′ 2″ length-wise and 7′ 8″ width-wise. The DV and HC heights inside the 7ft container are the same as the 6ft unit (7′ 9″ and 8′ 9″).

Regarding their price, new shipping containers go out at a  maximum of $2,500 to $3,200.  Used storage units will retail at $1,600 or $1,750.

8ft Container

largest selection tiny shipping container for delivery

The surface diameter of 8ft containers is the same as its height—around 8 feet. Its outside DV and HC heights are 8′ 6″ and 9′ 6″, respectively. 

On the inside, the 8ft container is 7′ 2″ in length and 7′ 8″ in width. The DV and HC height are around 7′ 9″ and 8′ 9″ each.

A  used 8ft container might stand at approximately $1,800 or $2,100,  depending on the state it’s in. If you opt for a new one, however, those cost about $900 to $1,100 more.

9ft Container

  • Interior Cubic Capacity: 399 Square Feet
  • Tare Weight: 2,204 pounds
  • Max Cargo Weight: 13,230 pounds
9ft shipping container with fork lift pockets

9ft containers are 9 feet long, their width is around 7′ 3″, and they have roughly 399 square feet of internal capacity. Their external height dimensions are 8′ 6″ and 9′ 6″ (DV and HC, respectively).

As for the internal measurements, the length is 8′ 6″, and the width is 8′ 10″. DV height is typically 7′ 9″, while its HC height is 8′ 9″.

The average market price for an unused 9ft container ranges from $2,100 to $3,400. Alternatively, secondhand units might sell at $1,600 or $1,900.

10ft Container

10ft shipping container with secure doors and shelving

10ft shipping containers are fairly common in the industry. They’re 10 feet long and 8 feet wide. Their outer heights are 8′ 6″ and 9′ 6″, respectively.

The inner dimensions of a 10ft container are 9′ 2″ and 7′ 8″. Its DV height is around 7′ 9″, and the HC height is about a foot longer.

The prices for a new 10-foot containers fluctuates from $2,995 to $5,995. A used one, on the other hand, will cost significantly less, depending on its condition.

Best Uses for Small Cargo Containers

commercial steel one trip shipping container delivered

Container sales are steadily increasing, with prices going up every quarter due to the strong industry demand. This, in turn, means that more and more people and businesses are making use of small storage containers.

Having a 7ft or 8ft shipping container in your backyard can come in handy during home renovations, for instance. Since either is a high-security lock box, you can safely store new furniture there too.

Additionally, small shipping containers can fit perfectly in the back of a truck—in case you have one. This makes it easier to move your stuff, saving you money on moving companies. If nothing else, you can simply use them for extra storage.

rent or buy one trip storage containers custom designed with windows

Businesses also benefit from the portability of small ISO containers. They’re great for storing bulk office equipment, for example, and additional materials that take up much space. 

Landscaping and construction companies as well tend to use small containers for the storage and delivery of their cargo.


Can I Use a Shipping Container as a Shed?

Absolutely! In fact, it’s a cheaper alternative to getting an actual shed. Plus, with ISO containers, you can modify and customize it to your liking. Not to mention a steel container is more durable than a wooden shed.

Are Shipping Containers Waterproof?

Yes! Since they’re made for the shipping industry, containers are manufactured from sturdy, heavy-duty, and high-quality steel in order to withstand the rough elements from the sea. They’re made to block water and wind as their rubber door seals keep the doors locked tight.

How Much Does a 20-foot Shipping Container Cost?

On average, a 20-foot shipping container will cost $5,000. 20ft containers for sale are $3,500 or $4,500, with the price varying according to the container’s condition.

What Can I Use 10 Ft Containers For?

A 10 ft storage container is an excellent pop-up storage option. Often utilized as storage units, 10-foot containers can be used for much more than just storage. From offices, to man caves, workshops, coffee shops, and more, 10ft ISO containers have tons of commercial applications.


People and businesses can both benefit from investing in small shipping containers.

Shipping containers are a great solution for your storage problems; plus, they’re easily portable and will help you cut down on transportation expenses.

Small shipping containers are harder to find than conventional ones. If you’re still debating whether you should get one, hurry and fill out a quote form today! 

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