Did you know it is possible to track the vessel carrying your shipment on the sea? Waiting for your car or goods to the Nigerian port of entry can be tiresome especially when there is a delay. The waiting period can also be a frantic one for first timers. Imagine you’ve spent millions to buy a car but you can’t tell its whereabout after the ship sails.
You can find solace in tracking the vessel carrying your shipment while on high sea. At least, you won’t be bothered much as you see the real-time location of your shipment. By real-time, we mean the specific location of your shipment at a particular point in time.
For those that don’t have the resource to pay huge amount for airfreight, shipping by sea is their best bet. It is the cheapest and has proven to be very efficient, but it may take some time; It could be weeks or months in some case.
GPS tracking technology has made it possible for one to track vessel carrying his/her shipment while on sea. This will allow you see where your shipment is around the world. It can also provide you with the port details and the estimated time of arrival (ETA). As long as you have a device with internet access, you can always track the current location of the vessel bearing your shipment anytime.
To track the location of the vessel carrying your shipment, you need to specify the container number/Bill of lading/Booking number and the shipping line. Using any of these three references, you can track and see where a vessel is.
There are numerous websites you can visit in order to track your shipment using GPS technology, but before we get to that, let’s talk about the references you can use to do this tracking.
We will talk about container number, bill of lading and booking number. You’ll need to use one of these in the said numerous GPS tracking websites to track your shipment.
1. Container Number:
A container number, also known as container identification number, is a reference number assigned to a freight container for legal and commercial purposes. A container number is composed of four letters (container prefix) which is the owner code followed by six digits serial number and a check digit. The owner code shows the company that owns the container.
To track with container number, visit the shipping lines website (eg hapag-lloyd.com) and go to container tracking. Input the container number as seen in this link https://www.hapag-lloyd.com/en/online-business/tracing/tracing-by-container.html?container=TCLU++5106159
2. Bill of Lading number and VIN
This is another way to track your shipment. The document below is a Bill of Lading. It is a standard document issued by a carrier to acknowledge receipt of cargo for shipment. It shows the details of the shipment and gives title of the shipment to the specified party.
Visit the website of the shipping line that’s carrying your car. In the case of the bill of lading below, it’s Grimaldi. So, visit their tracking page HERE. Input the bill of lading number and the last six-digits of the VIN.
3. Vessel Name
Using the name of the vessel that’s transporting your car, you can tell it’s location using various GPS tracking website like marinetraffic.com. The name of the vessel can be seen on the bill of lading.
If your car is being transported on the vessel called “Grande Camerron”, visit marinetraffic.com and search for Grande Cameroon in the search bar seen in the image below.
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