Is it legal to ship someone using a controlled atmoshere shipping container?

They would have various amenities (food, water, entertainment etc) And they will be shipped from Canada to Spain.

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    Would the shipping company and the ship's crew know there was a person in the container? Among other practical problems, the person would need to be manifested as a passenger to the Spanish authorities on arrival (and probably to the Canadians on departure) and there'd be a bunch of immigration formalities that would have to be followed. None of that would happen if the ship didn't know there was a passenger, and then everyone's in trouble for carrying a stowaway. Feb 3, 2016 at 8:13
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    I doubt you will find a shipping company interested in this kind of business.
    – Relaxed
    Jun 2, 2016 at 6:38
  • I have heard of people traveling on a shipping container ship but not in a container. Why do you want to travel by container? Aug 1, 2016 at 10:58
  • @TopherBrink Perhaps as a way of avoiding immigration controls -- in which case it would clearly not be legal -- or just for novelty's sake.
    – phoog
    Aug 1, 2016 at 12:41

1 Answer 1


Well, it depends.

I am personally aware of 2 engineers who were housed in a shipping container during sea trials of the Royal Australian Navy's HMAS Success. This was carried out with the knowledge, permission and active participation of the navy and was perfectly legal.

However, if these people were smuggled onto a ship that would be illegal.

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