How Does Calculating CBM Work?

With our online cubic meter calculator, you only have to enter only few information to get a result for your cubic meter calculation directly. The following data is needed:Quantity of Goods to Be ShippedLength of Cargo/Pallet/etc.Width of Cargo/Pallet/etc.Height of Cargo/Pallet/etc.

You are watching: How many cubic meters in a pallet

Quotes for Your CBM Calculation

As soon as you receive the result of the CBM/cubic meter calculation, you have the opportunity to obtain a transport price with one click. Only few further information is needed for this:Place of Loading and UnloadingTransport Type (Container, Pallet, etc.)Means of Transport (Sea, Air, Road)Earliest Loading Date and Latest Unloading Date

Explaining the CBM Calculation – What Does CBM Mean

The cubic meter, also called CBM or m3, is a unit of measurement calculated from three variables. It determines the volume and is used in a wide variety of areas. You may also need cubic meterage in your own household, e.g. when designing a sandbox or pool, or if you need the volume calculation of moving containers. 

What Is the Cubic Meter Calculation Formula

Calculating cubic metres is relatively easy for simple geometric shapes. One has to only multiply length, width, and height. This can be done very fast, especially with the use of our m3 calculator tool. In the case of other geometric forms or, for example, goods that do not have a regular shape and consist of several forms, things are already getting a little more complicated and require special formulas, as well as precise information about the material. Below you will find the formulas for calculating:

Cuboidal shapesCylindrical bodiesSpherical bodies

CBM All Formulas

For the calculating CBM, please note that many dimensions are given in other measurement types such as centimeters (cm) or inch. This means that it must first be converted into meters (m) in order to calculate cubic meters (m3) at the end. 

CBM Formula: Cubic meterage of Cuboidal Shapes calculation

Only two easy steps are needed for the calculation of cuboidal shapes:1. You calculate the area by multiplying length times width.2. This result is multiplied by the height to calculate the volume. 

CBM Formula: Cubic meterage of cylindrical Shapes calculation

For calculating cubic metres of cylindrical bodies, the radius must be determined by dividing the diameter by two. The radius is then squared. This is now multiplied by Pi to get the two-dimensional area. For the final CBM calculation, the distance between the two circular surfaces representing the height is now multiplied by the previously calculated area.

CBM Formula: Cubic Meterage of Globular Shapes calculation

For calculating cubic metres of globular shapes, one also needs the radius. The formula for this is as follows:

CBM Formula: Conversion of CBM

Especially in logistics, it is often about volume and weight. For this reason, people often ask how to convert e.g. cubic metres into tons. However, this calculation is not easy, as you need to know exactly what material it is and what density it is. 



Cheap & need oriented transport insurances


Compare forwarders and means of transports for cheap offers


EU promoted network of experienced freight forwarders


Full Service: customs, loading, load restraint, insurance, packaging



CBM (Cubic Meters) Calculation - Logistics examples


In logistics, calculating CBM is mostly done to standardize the pricing and make it easy to create prices. Here are some examples from logistics to get an approximate idea. 

Pallet CBM Calculator


You want to ship goods on pallets, but you do not know which pallet is sufficient for this? To find out, calculating CBM is the first thing to do. In our example, a washing machine with dimensions 60cm depth, 60cm width and 85cm height is shipped. The cubic meterage for this is 0.60m x 0.60m x 0.85m. This gives 0.31cbm. So, here, a mini-pallet with the dimensions 80cm x 60cm would suffice. The height plays only a limited role in pallet shipping, as it depends on the goods to be transported and also how the pallet will be shipped (container, lorry, etc.). So pay particular attention to length and width when calculating the cubic meters for your pallet transport. Here are some examples for pallet types. 

Euro Pallet120 cm80 cmVaryMin 0,01 cbmVary
Barred Box86 cm97 cm124 cmMin 0,01 cbm1,4 cbm
Industrial Pallet100 cm120 cmVaryMin 0,01 cbmVary

For pallets there are also so-called collar or pallet lids, which are suitable for different pallets and also offer different heights. Thus, the cubic meters are very variable. 

Container CBM Calculator


How much fits in a container always depends on the type of goods, the way they are packaged and also how they are loaded. It is only natural that the maximum capacity of the container can never be fully filled, as there are always small empty spaces between the goods. Calculating CBM therefore plays an important role in order to be able to optimally plan the shipment.Here are examples of capacities of 20ft., 40ft., and 40ft. HC containers. 

20 Fuß589 cm234 cm238 cm26 - 28 CBM33 CBM
40 Fuß 1200 cm234 cm238 cm56 - 58 CBM66 CBM
40 Fuß High Cube1200 cm234 cm269 cm60 - 68 CBM72 CBM

Did you know?With our CBM calculator you can obtain transport offers directly!

Are you still looking for logisticians? Then you can get free transport offers that match your cubic meter information. 

Our sea freight calculator can calculate pre- and post-carriage prices directly and allows you to compare offers quickly!

See more: How Many Factors Does 84 Have, Pair Factors & Prime Factors Of 84

Do you have a little time pressure? Compare the results of the sea freight calculator against the offers of the air freight calculator.