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Business and Trade

How is Dwell Time Calculated?

Dwell time is elapsed from when the cargo arrives at the port until it leaves. The cargo ship needs to obtain all the permits. Clearance is necessary for loading and unloading containers. Knowing the dwell time analytics helps ship operators plan shipments.

Many ports in India use a particular method to evaluate customs clearance of cargo. This procedure takes different amounts of time to process at other ports. Measuring the port dwell time at each step helps provide transparency to the shipper.

The port authorities use a basic arithmetic mean of average time taken in different stages to calculate dwell time. The dwell time for importing is shorter than the dwell time for exporting.

The Importance of Dwell Time

Dwell time analytics is essential for the shipping industry. It is used to measure the time a cargo ship spends at each stage of transferring containers at the port. Most business owners and ship operators consider shorter dwell times. Shorter dwell time means shippers have to pay for fewer days to store containers.

Many tracking sites analyze the dwell time and display it for ease in the shipping industry. It also provides visibility across various stakeholders. Dwell time is also associated with the efficiency of the port. Shippers use the report of dwell time of each port to schedule the best route for their ship journey.

It also informs the ship operator of upcoming weather. Overall, dwell time is crucial for trade growtharound the world.

Factors Impacting Port Dwell Time

According to a study, Port dwell time at certain ports is abnormally long. However, some ports offer shorter dwell times. It depends on the following factors:

  • Port productivity

Many ports worldwide lack productivity, manpower, and machinery to operate a terminal. Typically, ports with bad performance have a longer dwell time, close to 20 days. In comparison, productive ports offer short dwell time, usually 3 to 4 days.

  • Automated ports

Most ports use automated systems to transfer cargo. It helps provide a more predictable port performance as it shortens dwell time. Many ports are working to overcome the limit of human potential. An automated port can increase its productivity by 10 to 35%.

  • Storage problem

Most ports lack storage containers. Some ports use every available space in their yard for storing containers. Using unsuitable space for container storage lowers the port performance, increasing dwell time.

How Dwell Time Help In Tracking Container?

The dwell time depends on the container’s volume, type, and handling methods. Less heavy containers are easy to transport. Generally, the containers that take more time to reach the destination sit in the yard. It takes more time to load or unload bulk containers. It also takes more time to locate the particular container.

Many tracking sites use dwell time to estimate the container’s position. It provides time cargo takes at different phases such as entering, loading, and leaving and defines dwell time. It also includes information on the remaining journey of cargo.

Some efficient ports offer a shorter dwell time. It happens when ports can finish the transaction and store fewer containers quickly.


Many container tracking sites calculate and analyze the port dwell time to assist shippers in planning shipments. Most sites analyze the dwell time of the import cargo every month. If you want to calculate the dwell time of a specific port, use LDB – DLDs. It provides valuable information about the supply chain.

You can track the real-time position of the container using the LDB tracking system. The site also induces visibility and transparency to the ship’s movement. Analyzing the dwell time helps ports find problems in their system and increase efficiency.

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