Pros and Cons of Water Transport

Water transport is the process of moving people and goods by either boat or ships over oceans, lakes, seas, canals or rivers.

This means of transport is relatively slow as compared to other means but the good side of it is that they can carry heavy and large goods at a time.

Pros and Cons of Water Transport

Pros of Water Transport

  1. Good when transporting bulky goods

Through ships, vehicles can be transported from one place to another. It is easier for a ship to transport vehicles compared to other means of transport hence good in case there is a need for transporting bulky goods.

  1. Very good during natural calamities

Calamities such as floods are natural in that they do occur when there is a heavy downfall. This means of transport becomes very important as people and goods can move from one place to another by means of boats.

  1. Relatively cheap

Especially when there is a need to transport bulky goods this means of transport becomes relatively cheap compared to other means. When transporting bulky goods through road transport it will be very costly as it will be able to transport the goods in bits.

  1. Facilitates foreign trade

Many seas and oceans borders other countries and continents. Through water transport goods can be moved from one country to another hence foreign trade taking place. The advantage of foreign trade is that people are able to enjoy a variety of goods that are not produced in their own countries and continents.

  1. Low maintenance cost

It is cheap to maintain water transport as compared to road transport where the roads need to be constructed as well as the vehicles need to be in good condition. With water transport, the water is already there so it only the ship or boats that need to be made.

  1. Low chances of accidents

When using water transport there are low chances that they may be involved in an accident. This is because there is no congestion when it comes to water transport and they move in accordance with the waves hence easy to prevent unnecessary accidents.

Cons of Water Transport

  1. Slow

As compared to other means of transport, water transport is relatively slow in that the ship or boats cannot move at a high speed while in water.

  1. Suitable for a short distance

Water transport is slow hence this makes it suitable for transporting goods and people over a short distance as it will take little time to reach its destination.

  1. Little infrastructure

There are fewer docks and this makes it hard for ships to be loaded and offloaded at the decks as there will be congestion hence taking a long time.

  1. Poor weather

Water transport is hindered by poor weather as the ships cannot sail when the waves are moving at high speed or when the seas have a lot of water due to heavy downfalls.

  1. Expensive

Canals are expensive to construct and maintain hence it is not easy for canals to be used to transport goods or people. As also there is a high demand for ships, more ports need to be constructed which requires a lot of money hence it is posing a problem.


Water transport is cheap but there are a lot of problems facing it especially in developing countries hence not really being used and yet the demand for this means of transport is really increasing. The public likes it because many people have started venturing in the business of transporting bulky goods.


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