9 Most Commonly Used Cargo Ships Around the World

Thursday February 15, 2018


Shipping is one of the largest industries in logistics which carries tons of goods to different parts of the world.

It is an ever expanding industry with larger and more agile ships that ply the oceans every year. All international shipments are sent by air or by sea.

Although sea shipping is relatively slower than air, goods that are not easily perishable is sent by water as it is cheaper than sending goods by air.

Large quantities of goods can be sent through ships which makes it a preferred mode of transport mostly used by many large companies.

Sea shipments operate on a weekly schedule and there is room for delays in delivering the goods to be delivered.

Ships transport a variety of goods, and for each purpose there is a different ship.

Here we will discuss the different vessels that are most commonly used to transport cargo.

1) Container Vessel

As one of the most common vessels that roam around the oceans these come in various capacities like 20′, 40′ and 45′.

They can have different types of cargo like cars, electronic equipment, day-to-day materials, pharmaceuticals, etc.

Currently the biggest container ship is the Emma Maersk.

container ship image

2) Reefer Vessel

These vessels need to be temperature controlled or frozen to carry goods that are perishable by nature.

It usually transports goods like fruit, fish, meat dairy products and vegetables. For some shipping companies, refrigerated cargo is a key part of their income.

reefer vessel image

3) Bulk Vessel

Just like the name suggests these vessels are used to transport commodities in bulk or loose.

These are cargos like metal ores, grains, coal, etc. They come in different sizes and are equipped to handle the goods in bulk or loose.

Some of the types of bulk vessels are Handysize, Handymax, Panamax, and Capesize.

bulk container vessel image

4) Breakbulk Vessel

These are vessels that need to cargo to be loaded separately as the products shouldn’t mix with each other.

In these vessels the goods are loaded individually. Some of the goods that are transported in breakbulk vessels are timber, sugar, flour, chemicals, paint, cement, etc.

As you see these are loaded as bagged cargo.

Breakbulk vessel image

5) Ro-Ro Vessel

Ro-ro is an acronym for Roll-on/roll-off. Any kind of machinery and automobiles that are wheeled cargo is mainly what constitutes a Ro-Ro vessel.

Using built-in ramps the vehicles are loaded and unloaded into the ship. Goods are loaded through the stern or sides or a combination of both.

Ro-Ro vessel image

6) Multi-purpose Vessel

Carrying a combination of different types of cargo that are very much versatile makes them a very popular ship for shipping cargo.

Some of the goods that are transported using multi-purpose vessels are building materials, wood, steels, rolls of paper and bulk cargo.

Larger versions of these vehicles can carry different cargo in the same voyage.

Multi-purpose vessel image

7) Tanker Vessel

 Tankers are merchant vessels that are designed to transport liquids or gases in bulk. They are specially designed for this sole purpose and voyages to different parts of the world.

Majority of these tankers used for transportation are gas carriers, oil tankers and chemical tankers.

Tanker vessel image

8) Crude Carrier

These are vessels that carry crude oil and are solely for this purpose. There are different types of these carriers, mainly very large crude carrier (VLCC) and ultra large crude carrier (ULCC).

Having a dead weight tonnage or carrying capacity up to 2.5 million tons a VLCC transports lesser cargo than the ULCC which has a capacity between 2.5 million to 5 million tons.

crude carrier image

9) LNG Carrier

As the name suggests these carriers are capable of carrying liquefied natural gases.

They are ready to carry products that are compressed to liquid form. These are transported to different destinations around the globe.

LNG carrier image


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