Cubed Weight

The term cubing is widely used in the logistics sector to define values ​​for specific volumes of cargo. The cube calculation is essential to know the best form of transport according to the type of merchandise.

In this sense, there is air cubing, which has a process similar to other means of transport, with the exception of some specifics. The main function of this procedure is to check the weight in relation to the volume that the goods to be transported will occupy in the cargo area of ​​the plane.

Through the cubage calculation it is possible to arrive at a fair value in terms of freight. Also because some orders can take up little space, but have a substantial weight (dense cargo), or the other way around (bulky cargo).

What is and what is the cubage calculation for?

In a simple and straightforward way, cubage is a quantity that relates the mass and volume of loads, with the aim of optimizing transport.

Therefore, the proper cubage calculation makes it possible to use the largest possible space for cargo that does not exceed the vehicle’s weight capacity. In addition to preventing it from leaving its source too heavy with a small volume occupied.

In order to better understand what the cubage calculation is for, visualize the following: a load of a very light material, which occupies a large volume in the means of transport.

This means that this type of cargo, even having a weight below the maximum capacity, would need an exclusive trip. Therefore, the cubing factor is ideal for a fairer charge for services rendered.

In other words, this optimization of transport that the calculation of cubic capacity makes possible is advantageous for both the transporter and the customer – who will pay a fairer cost according to the requested service.

Calculation of air cubage

To calculate cubage in air transport, the procedure is simple and very similar to how it is calculated in other means of transport.

The dimensions of height, width and length of the box with the goods must be multiplied to obtain its volume. This will also be associated with a cubing factor – a constant established for each means of transport.

The factors considered for calculating freight charges are:

  • Gross Weight: load weight + packing (Actual load weight plus packing weight)
  • Cubed Weight: Volume, weight and space (Relation between the volume, weight of the cargo and the space it will occupy inside the aircraft)
  • Taxed Weight: The greater between the gross weight and the cubed weight will be considered.

The largest of them will be used as a basis for calculation by airlines.

Understanding more with formulas

Then, to carry out the calculation, the product dimensions in length, width and height are considered, as well as the cubage factor in an air mode operation.

If you have more than one load with the same size and weight characteristics, simply multiply the number of boxes by the cubed weight:


Example: A company needs to transport 80 boxes of 0.1 m x 0.1 m x 0.1 m, each with 1 kg, the calculation of the cubage will be:

CUBED WEIGHT = 80 x [0.1 x 0.1 x 0.1] x 166.667 = 13.333 kg

Thus, despite the total load being 80 kg, in the aerial cubing it would be equivalent to 13.333 kg of load.

Generally, air cargo operations rely on smaller packages and boxes, in terms of measurements in centimeters. That’s why a transformation is made in the cubing factor, from kilograms to cubic meters.

We know that by calculating the aerial cubing, 166,667 kg corresponds to 1 cubic meter, that is, a rule of three is enough to know that 1 kg is equivalent to 0.006 cubic meters, or 6000 cubic centimeters.

So, the calculation of cubage in the air mode can also be done:


Following the previous example: 80 boxes of 10 cm x 10 cm x 10 cm each weighing 1 kg will be transported, thus:

CUBED WEIGHT = 80 x 10 x 10 x 10/6000 = 13.333 kg

This proves that in both units of measure, the conversion arrives at the same result!