What can I fit inside a 20ft storage container?

28 Sep 2023

 How Much Stuff Can a 20ft Container Hold?  

Whether you're planning a move, need extra storage space, or needing to tranship goods, understanding the capacity of a 20ft storage container can be incredibly useful. This knowledge can help you plan more effectively and make the most out of your container hire. So, how much stuff can a 20 ft container hold? Let's dive in and find out.

Understanding the Dimensions of a 20 ft Container:

Before we delve into how much a 20 ft container can hold, it's crucial to understand its dimensions. Standard 20ft shipping container, also known as TEU (Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit), typically measure about 20 feet long, 8 feet wide, and 8.5 feet high. However, these are external dimensions; the internal dimensions are slightly less due to the thickness of the walls.

Internally, a standard 20 ft container usually measures about 19.4 feet long, 7.8 feet wide and 7.10 feet high. This gives us an approximate total volume of around 1,170 cubic feet or approximately 33 cubic meters.

Estimating Capacity: What Can You Fit Inside?

Now that we have an idea about the size of a standard 20 ft storage container let's explore what you could potentially fit inside it.

For household items:

A general rule of thumb is that a fully furnished room requires approximately around 200 cubic feet of space. Therefore, theoretically speaking, a standard-sized container could accommodate contents from up to five or six medium-sized rooms.

This might include:

- A couple of beds (dismantled)
- A dining table and chairs
- Several boxes filled with kitchen items
- A sofa set
- Wardrobes and other furniture pieces
- Boxes containing personal belongings like clothes, books etc.

For commercial goods:

If you're planning to use the container for commercial purposes, it can typically hold approximately 10 standard pallets (single stacked) or 20 if double-stacked.

However, keep in mind that these are rough estimates and the actual capacity may vary depending on how efficiently you pack your items.

Maximizing Space: Efficient Packing Tips

To make the most out of your container hire, efficient packing is key. Here are a few tips to help you maximise space:

1. Dismantle Furniture: If possible, dismantle larger furniture pieces. This not only saves space but also makes it easier to load and unload.

2. Use All Available Space: Don't just think horizontally; use the vertical space too. Stack boxes and other items as high as safely possible.

3. Pack Tightly: To prevent items from shifting during transportation, pack your items as tightly as possible.

4. Use Padding: Protect fragile items with padding materials like bubble wrap or blankets.

5. Plan Ahead: Sketch out a plan before you start loading your container. Knowing where each item will go can save you a lot of time and effort.

6. Consider the weight: Should you be planning to relocate your container with goods inside, it's important to consider the weight you have added to ensure you can safely lift the container.

The Benefits of ContainerHire

Container hire offers numerous benefits whether you're moving house, storing excess inventory or shipping goods.

Firstly, it's cost-effective - hiring a container can often be cheaper than purchasing one outright, especially if you only need it for a short period.

Secondly, it's flexible - we can offer various sizes and types of containers to suit different needs, and even create bespoke openings and access points.

Lastly, it's secure - containers are designed to withstand harsh weather conditions and are typically fitted with robust locking mechanisms for added security.


So there we have it – a standard 20ft container can hold quite a lot! Whether you're planning a move or need extra storage space for your business, understanding the capacity of these containers can help you make more informed decisions when it comes to storage container hire. Remember, efficient packing is key to maximising space and getting the most out of your container.

Contact us now to discuss our range of containers that can help you!