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What is a GP or HC in Shipping Container terms

While there are many different grades and types of containers, they generally come in two differing heights.

GP, or General Purpose containers are the standard size; they have an external height of 2.6m (8’ 6”).

HC, or High Cube containers have the added height clearance; they have an external height of 2.9m (9’ 6”).

You will find that there are more GPs then HCs in the 20ft market…and more HCs then GPs in the 40ft market!
It’s all based on exporter/importer preference when it comes down to it.

There is little price difference between a 40’GP and 40’HC new build for a shipping line when it comes to purchasing for their fleet, so they buy the 40’HC containers.
With the 20’GP/HC, it’s the opposite, so they purchase 20’GP containers for their fleet.

With only a foot of height difference, it doesn’t sound like much difference at all!
Just remember to ask one of our friendly staff to check our availability before you purchase.

If you see a container out and about, you can tell the HC containers as they have reflective tape on the doors.

Another good way to tell them apart is by the “container code.”
A 20’GP will have a code of 22G1 or 22G2…but a 20’HC will have a code of 25G1 or 25G2.
Same with the 40s! 42G1 or 42G2 generally refers to a 40’GP.