Small shipping containers, such as the 6ft, 8ft and 10ft are rare in the container market, but have many advantages and uses. Learn more about mini containers in this blog, plus how to buy 10ft units at the best prices on Container xChange. 

If you need containers for lightweight shipments or compact storage purposes, a small container will check all of your boxes. It’s easy to transport, doesn’t take up much space, and is guaranteed to keep your goods safe and dry. 

But there’s a catch; sourcing small shipping containers from reliable suppliers at budget-friendly prices can be tricky.

Luckily, Container xChange is here to help. On our online container marketplace, connect with 1,700 vetted suppliers and choose from 100,000+ shipping containers, including 10fts, available at negotiable prices.

Want to see how quick and easy it is to source the containers you’re looking for on our platform? Simply input the container type and condition, then choose from 2,500+ global locations. Press search to start browsing and comparing offers today.

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    What are small shipping containers?

    When we talk about ‘small shipping containers’, we’re referring to containers that are smaller than standard units (20ft, 40ft and 40ft high cubes). These lightweight containers come in various sizes. 

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    Smallest shipping container: 3 main types

    As mentioned above, small shipping containers come in three main sizes. Check out the below image to see the length, width and height of these three mini containers.

    Dimensions and size of mini containers

    Now that you’ve seen how the three container sizes compare, let’s look at the measurements in more detail. 

    6ft container 8ft container 10ft container
    Length 5.7ft (1.7m) 7.6ft (2.28m) 11.5ft (3.5m)
    Width 5.8ft (1.72m) 6.11ft (2.10m) 8ft (2.44m)
    Height 5.9ft (1.75m) 6.7ft (2.02m) 8.5ft (2.59m)
    Cubic capacity 195.99 cu ft (5.55 cu m) 431.19 cu ft (12.21 cu m) 782 cu ft (22.12 cu m)

    And now that we’ve seen the numbers, here are some of the things you can fit into each size.

    The 6ft container can carry/store:

    • 2 to 3 bicycles, depending on their size
    • 3 to 5 small household appliances
    • 4 to 6 small chairs

    The 8ft container can carry/store:

    • 16 to 20 cardboard boxes (18″ x 18″ x 24″)
    • 5 to 8 small appliances
    • 3 to 4 medium-sized TVs

    The 10ft container can carry/store:

    • The contents of a small, one-bedroom apartment
    • Around 4 to 5 motorbikes
    • 4 pallets measuring 40” x 48” (1.016m x 1.219m)

    When determining the ideal container size for your shipping or storage needs, it’s essential to consider whether the weight and capacity align with your cargo. Take a look below for more details on how much each small container weights, plus it’s capacity.

    How much does a small shipping container weigh? 

    Let’s look at the tare weight (weight of a container when empty) and payload capacity (maximum weight a container can carry) now.

    6ft shipping container weight: 

    The 6ft container has a tare weight of around 1,763.7 lbs (800 kgs). To put this into perspective, imagine the weight of 32 washing machines (depending on the model and size). The payload capacity is 1,102.31 lbs (500 kgs). 

    8ft shipping container weight:

    The 8ft has a tare weight of approximately 2,204.62 lbs (1,000 kgs). This is the same as around 4 average-sized cars (depending on make and model). The 8ft has a payload capacity of up to 5,512 lbs (2,500 kgs).

    10ft shipping container weight:

    The 10ft container has a tare weight of approximately 2,866 lbs (1,300 kgs); approximately 65 standard-sized bags of rice (assuming each bag weighs 20 kgs). The payload capacity is 19,752.97 lbs (8,959.8 kgs). 

    How much do mini shipping containers cost: New and used small containers 

    Curious about how much you’ll shell out for small containers? Let’s take a look at the price for new and used (cargo-worthy) 10ft shipping containers on the Container xChange trading marketplace, so that you can decide which condition best suits your budget. 

    For a new 10ft container in the US, you’re looking at around US $4,232 on Container xChange. And for a used unit, you’ll pay US $926. It’s safe to say that opting for used 10ft containers is going to save you a lot of cash – US $3,306 per container, to be specific!

    In Europe, you’re looking at US $3,285 on our platform. If this price is too steep, don’t worry, used 10ft units are just US $2,293 on the xChange trading marketplace. Save US $992 per unit by choosing used over new.

    Like the prices you see, or think you could get an even better deal? On our platform, negotiate directly with suppliers to settle on a price that suits you. Click below to talk to our expert team about how to get started on xChange today.

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    When to use a small shipping container

    There are various scenarios in which a mini shipping container is the best fit. Check out some of them now: 

    Storage: Mini shipping containers are the ideal storage containers for small amounts of household goods, furniture, tools and building supplies. As long as the small containers you buy are in good condition and ISO-approved, they’ll be wind and watertight, keeping your goods safe and dry.

    Portable storage: If you need to move storage loads from one site to another, mini containers are perfect; they’re light and quick to load and unload. No fuss, no need for expensive lifting equipment.  

    Compact office spaces: Besides storage, small shipping containers are the perfect option for portable offices, especially when space on a site is limited. If the office needs to change locations often, these containers are quick and convenient to move. 

    Lightweight cargo shipping: Mini containers can safely transport small, light loads of cargo. They also work well for shipping seasonal supplies that need to be transported in small quantities at certain times of the year.

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    Advantages of smaller containers

    Just as large containers have their advantages, small containers have their own unique set of benefits. These include:

    • Versatility: As you can see in the above section, small containers are extremely versatile and can be used for storage and shipping, as well as for office spaces and even small modular homes.
    • Customization: Mini containers are easy to customize once they come to the end of their shipping or storage lifespan. They can be repurposed as portable offices, pop-up shops or even as extra living areas.
    • Space efficiency: Small containers don’t take up much space and can fit into neat corners, out of the way on building sites. They can also be easily stacked to create more vertical storage without taking up more ground space. 

    Buy small shipping containers in 4 easy steps

    Now that you’ve got the lowdown on small shipping containers, their dimensions and benefits, we’ve got some good news for you. You can get 10ft units, as well as a host of other standard and special container types, on the xChange platform in just four easy steps. 

    Define your criteria 

    Once you’ve decided on the small container size that works for your cargo or storage load, you’ll also need to choose between new and used. Lastly, settle on a price range that fits your budget. 

    To get an idea of the latest prices for the container type and size you want, use xChange Insights. Here, get the most up-to-date price points so that you can spot a good deal on the platform when you see one. 

    Browse options on the xChange trading marketplace

    Once you’ve got your list of criteria, hop onto the xChange trading marketplace to start finding the units you need. Simply type your requirements into the search, and you’ll be able to compare multiple options, including the price, container condition, and supplier.  

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    Negotiate a deal

    Once an option catches your eye, reach out directly to the supplier to negotiate the price and the terms of the sale. We promise you there are no middlemen involved—it really is that simple!

    Pay for your containers safely

    Once both parties are happy with the deal, the last thing to do is make payment for your containers. On our platform, you can finally put your online payment hassles to rest. With the xChange Wallet, we guarantee all payments are 100% secure. 

    Now you’ve got the lowdown on all you need to know about small shipping containers. If you have regular container requirements, subscribe to Container xChange at a nominal fee and become a member of our platform. You can also select add-ons during the signup process. Set up your free demo with our team of experts to see the trading platform in action. Buy mini containers like 10fts at affordable prices today.

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    Common FAQs: Small shipping containers

    What are the smallest shipping containers?

    The smallest shipping containers are the 6ft, 8ft, and 10ft shipping containers. The 6ft has a length of 5.7ft (1.7m), a width of 5.8ft (1.72m), and a height of 5.9ft (1.75m). The 8ft has a length of 7.6ft (2.28m), a width of 6.11ft (2.10m) and a height of 6.7ft (2.02m). The 10ft is 11.5ft (3.5m) in length, 8ft (2.44m) in width, and 8.5ft (2.59m) in height.

    What are small shipping containers used for?

    Small shipping containers such as the 6ft, 8ft, and 10ft are used for transporting lightweight container loads and seasonal supplies, as well as small storage requirements and portable office spaces.

    How much does a small shipping container cost?

    Small shipping containers are rare in the shipping industry and need to be sourced carefully to avoid being overcharged. For a cargo-worthy 10ft container in the US, you’re looking at US $3,306, and in Europe, US $2,293.