Shipping to Ghana

Get up-to-date local information about export procedures and restrictions, demurrage and detention, container drop-offs and more.


Service Point: Takoradi
Service Route Booking Documentation Cargo
W3A US, Europe Mon 17:00 Tue 17:00 Wed 18:00
Service Point: Tema
Service Route Booking Documentation Cargo
FW3 Far East, China, East India Mon 14:00 Tue 08:00 Thu 19:00
W1A US, Europe Tue 17:00 Thu 17:00 Wed 18:00

Demurrage and Detention

Tariff for demurrage and detention are in same rates in Ghana. Demurrage is calculated from the day after discharge date up to and including the day of empty return to the terminal. 

Please note shipping line demurrage and detention charges exclude port storage charges. Storage charges are billed by the port and paid directly to the Port Authority.


The standard free-time for all shipments discharged in Ghanaian ports is:

  • 7 days for dry and 5 days for reefer containers - if containers delivery within Ghana
  • 21 days for dry - if containers are in transit to other West African coastal countries
  • 28 days for dry containers - if containers are in transit to inland countries, like Burkina Faso; Mali and Niger.

Demurrage and detention

The standard demurrage tariffs, effective from 1st June 2011, are as follows :

Dry containers:

  • 7 days free from day of discharge
  • Day 8 to day 16 = USD 20 per twenty foot equivalent unit (teu) per day
  • Day 17 to 21 days = USD 25 per twenty foot equivalent (teu) per day 
  • Day 22 to stripping/gate-in = USD 50 per twenty foot equivalent (teu) per day 

Reefer containers:

  • 5 days free from day of discharge
  • Day 6 to stripping date   = USD 100 per twenty foot equivalent per day.


For a 40' reefer container that is discharged on April, 5 and returned empty to the terminal on April,12 demurrage will be USD 600 (3 days at USD 200 per day - total time is 8 days from day after discharge to date of empty return and 5 days free-time is applied).


General booking procedures 

Export bookings can be made via

Visit online help, call phone no. +233 303 200192, or email ( for further assistance. 

Documentation procedures

Customs releases must be processed and submitted at the export desk within cut-off times, normally 5 days to vessel ETA.

Shipping instructions may be sent online soon after container gate-in at

 Visit online help, call phone no. +233 303 200192, or email ( for further assistance. 

 For any cargo destined to USA, shippers are required to submit completed shipping instructions at least 72 hours prior to vessel arrival. This is to enable Maersk to comply with U.S Customs requirements. The regulations require all lines with direct call into any U.S port to lodge a manifest with U.S Customs 24 hours prior to vessel's arrival in the loading port. If any containers are not manifested within this time frame they may not be loaded complete and accurate under threat of significant fines or rejection of the vessel's permit to discharge cargo in the U.S. 


This regulation became effective on 2 December 2002. Maersk has fully complied with the U.S Customs regulations from this date. 


Weight restrictions 

The maximum safe working load (SWL) acceptable for Ghana is 32 metric tons, i.e cargo plus tare weight of container.


Neither 45 ft containers nor aluminium containers are accepted.

Special cargo

Out of gauge (OOG), break bulk (B/B) and IMO cargo are subject to standard Maersk approval procedures.

Bill of lading restrictions

As part of the U.S Customs 24 Hour Rule regulations, ' To the order of ' bills of lading are not accepted for shipments destined to the U.S or routed via U.S. Customs in U.S also does not accept commodity descriptions ' Freight all kinds' and 'General merchandise' nor the package type 'Pallets'.

Reefer equipment acceptance to U.S 

Reefer shipments to U.S and Canada can only be accepted in 40' reefer containers. Maersk does not accept shipments in 20' reefers to the U.S and Canada.

Local Charges

Local Charges for Ghana

Dry & Reef in USD

Export Service Charge(Dry) 115 230
Export Service Charge(Reefer) - 270

Contact us

If you want to speak to a sales person about a new shipment or if you have a question about your existing shipment, you can email us and we will respond within the next two days. If you have a more immediate question, you can search for help online.