Container service reliability improved for the second quarter in a row during the third quarter of 2011, according to Drewry Maritime Research’s latest Schedule Reliability Insight report. The report is the longest established independent survey of liner service reliability in the marketplace with data stretching back to the end of 2005. The proportion of 3,281 ships arriving on time (defined as either arriving at port on the advertised ETA or a day earlier) at selected ports in the third quarter of 2011 rose by 8 percentage points against the previous quarter to 63%. Maersk Line retained its position as the most reliable of the Top 20 carriers (by vessel fleet size) across all the trades covered by Drewry. APL took second place, while its New World Alliance partner Hyundai Merchant Marine came third. Thirteen of the Top 20 container lines equalled or surpassed the 63% on-time industry average and all bar three of the major carriers improved on their scores from the previous quarter. “The latest Schedule Reliability Insight results do suggest that carriers are committed to improving service integrity, particularly as the improvement occurred during a period of faltering demand and rates when the motivation to keep to schedule could have wavered,” said Simon Heaney, editor of Drewry’s Schedule Reliability Insight. As well as providing rankings of carriers on an industry-wide level, Schedule Reliability Insight also analyses carriers’ relative performance in three core East-West trades (transpacific, Asia/Europe/Med and transatlantic) and reliability by trade and service. During the third quarter Drewry transitioned to a new methodology which allowed for some vessels to be tracked by date and time. The rationale for this shift was to avoid punishing services with berthing slots scheduled for late in the day. There were 754 voyages measured using the new date and time method in 3Q11, with all others measured by day only. The proportion of vessels monitored by the hour will be greatly increased in future as more carriers are coming forward to provide Drewry with the required ETA data. As of October 2011, approximately two-thirds of all services tracked are measured with date and time. Carriers should contact the editor of this report if they wish to provide ETAs directly.