The SOC container is well-known for its reliability and flexibility within the shipping industry. In this blog, we’ll explore the three primary benefits of using SOCs, and  how they can help you avoid demurrage and detention fees.

When shipping goods, your number one priority is to get your cargo to the right place at the right time. Also high up on the list is to keep shipping costs down to a minimum. 

Luckily, there’s an easy way to do this, with SOCs (Shipper Owned Containers). SOCs increase flexibility and help you to avoid expensive demurrage and detention fees

Wondering where you can source SOCs quickly and easily? On the Container xChange leasing platform, find SOCs anytime, from anywhere. We’ve got over 50,000 containers available in 2,500 locations globally.

If you want to check out SOC offers right now, try our public search below. All you have to do is enter your pick-up and drop-off location, then hit the search button. Browse containers from 1,500+ vetted suppliers at competitive leasing rates today. 

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SOC container meaning

SOC stands for ‘shipper-owned container’. SOCs can be owned by either an individual or a business, and are often used to ship cargo across long distances. Simply put, a container is considered an SOC when the Beneficial Cargo Owner (BCO), freight forwarder, or NVOCC organizes its own container. 

So instead of using COCs (Carrier Owned Containers), you bring your own units. From there, you can book a container slot on a shipping vessel. With SOCs, the shipper is responsible for acquiring, maintaining and returning the containers themselves.  

What are the top 3 benefits of SOC containers?

If you’re curious about the main advantages of using SOCs to ship your cargo, here’s a quick summary:

Benefits of SOCs

Control of supply

One of the most important benefits of SOCs is that you can source the containers yourself. This is essential for locations where carriers are unable or unwilling to provide units, or only offer them at very high rates. 

SOC are also ideal for inland locations with limited container supply. Here, you can select the carrier you prefer, and pay lower trucking fees.

Control of ownership

With SOCs, you can choose:

  • The exact number of containers you want
  • Your preferred condition 
  • Time period you’ll need them for

In this way, you get exactly what you want, no disappointments, no risks.

Cost control

Choosing SOCs also means saving on freight shipping rates, especially when moving goods to destinations with equipment surpluses. This results in discounted rates in inland locations, as you’ll save on return trucking. 

Plus, avoid unexpected demurrage and detention costs, as you’re not obligated to move and/or return the containers to and from the carrier within a certain time frame. This means dodging the fees that can quickly add up to hundreds of dollars a day.

Avoid demurrage and detention fees, save cash, and increase your flexibility today with the Container xChange leasing platform. Click below to start browsing SOC offers that fit your budget and shipping requirements now.

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SOC vs COC containers: What’s the difference?

Wondering about the differences between Shipper Owned Containers and Carrier Owned Containers? Here are some of the key elements that set them apart:

SOC container COC container
Owned and operated by the shipper Owned and operated by the carrier 
Used to ship cargo over long distances  Rented out to various consignees 
No demurrage and detention charges Demurrage and detention charges apply 
Pick-up charges, per diem charges and free days apply Container cost often included in overall shipping cost
Duration of use determined by the shipper Duration of use determined by the carrier

Now let’s take a look at when to use SOC containers to ship goods.

When to use shipper owned containers

Although SOCs have many benefits, it’s important to consider your business’s shipping needs before deciding if they’re the right option. Here are some scenarios in which using SOCs makes sense:

You’re shipping to distant or remote locations: Got a substantial amount of cargo to ship to a distant or remote location? Leasing SOCs will help you to ship your goods as cost-effectively and efficiently as possible. 

You want to avoid demurrage & detention charges: Depending on where you ship your cargo (keeping in mind port congestion) and how long you store it at the port, D&D costs can really start to pile up. So, if you’re looking for a way around this, leasing SOCs is your solution.

You want to select good quality containers: By choosing your own containers, you can avoid getting units in poor condition that may not adequately protect your cargo.

You want to prevent empty container repositioning: On Container xChange, lease SOCs for one-way moves and save money on empty container repositioning

This one-way move can eliminate container imbalances in areas with surpluses or deficits, thus curbing empty container moves.

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Find 20ft and 40ft SOC pick-up charges on Container xChange

Before you lease SOCs, you’ll need to know how much it’s going to cost you. Luckily on the Container xChange platform, you can see the pick-up charges, per diem chargers and free days upfront. 

To get a better sense of the pick-up charges for 20ft and 40ft SOCs, have a look at the below data from our leasing platform:

  • The pick-up charge to move a 20ft container from Shanghai to Barcelona is US $28, with 75 free days and a per diem charge of US $5
  • And to move cargo from Nhava Sheva to Chengdu you’re looking at US $112, with an average of 50 free days, and a per diem charge of US $5,5.  
  • For just US $10, you can move your cargo on a 40ft container from Bangkok to Dallas. That’s a bargain! You’ll also get 217 free days and per diem charges are US $5
  • If it’s a 40ft HC container you need, move cargo from Shanghai to Barcelona for US $201, with an average of 48 free days, and per diem charges of US $3.

Note: The above rates are based on monthly transactions and are subject to change. 

Like the pick-up charges you see, or think you can get better deals by speaking directly to our suppliers? Then it’s time to join our leasing platform to start finding SOCs from vetted partners now. Keep reading to find out how. 

Lease SOCs one-way & curb repositioning costs with xChange

If SOCs are exactly what you need, look no further than Container xChange to find a cargo container that ticks all of your boxes. Here are the simple steps to leasing SOCs hassle-free on our marketplace:

Once you know what container type and size you need, input your requirements to start browsing container offers on our leasing platform. You’ll be able to compare multiple options all in one place, to make sure you’re getting the best deal out there.

When you find something that suits you, reach out to the supplier directly to negotiate the rates, terms and conditions. 

After settling all of the finer details with the partner, it’s time to pay. If this part leaves you in a cold sweat, don’t worry. You can make all payments directly on the platform, with the xChange Wallet. It’s 100% safe and secure.

Sounds quick and easy right? Plus, here are some of the benefits you’ll enjoy as a member of xChange:

  • Access 50,000+ containers in over 2,500 locations worldwide
  • Work with 1,500+ vetted and pre-approved suppliers
  • Compare multiple SOC offers in one place
  • Get complete price transparency
  • No hidden costs 
  • Negotiate deals directly with partners – No middleman

Start your SOC journey with us today. Click on the banner below to schedule a demo with one of our experts. You’ll get to see the leasing platform live, plus learn how to book your first SOC! Save big, increase your flexibility, and avoid demurrage and detention fees once and for all with Container xChange.

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Soc container: Common FAQs

What’s the difference between an SOC and COC container?

An SOC (Shipper Owned Container), is owned by the shipper, which may be a supplier or a consignee. On the other hand, a COC (Carrier Owned Container) belongs to the carrier. This may be a shipping line or a container leasing company.

What’s an SOC slot?

An SOC container is organized by the consignee or supplier. Along with this, a shipper can also book their own vessel slots, known as SOC slots.

What are the benefits of SOC containers?

Using SOC containers comes with a whole host of benefits. This includes more flexibility to choose the containers that suit your needs, as well as avoiding demurrage and detention fees.