How is Time presented in the MarineTraffic platform?

You may be a maritime professional living in the United Kingdom who uses MarineTraffic to monitor a vessel that has just departed from Port Hedland, a port agent in Singapore who wants to know beforehand the vessels that are about to arrive there in the coming days or, you may just want to communicate with a family member/friend aboard a Crude Oil Tanker crossing the Atlantic Ocean.

In any case, the perception of time is highly important given the fact that the globe is divided into 24 different time zones and vessels may be sailing in any of them!

Using the relevant Preferences options, you are able to define the way that time will be presented across the MarineTraffic platform.


Regarding Time Presentation, the pre-selected option is Default. The other options include: 

  • UTC (Universal Coordinated Time) 
  • Port's or Vessel's Local Time (based on the subject port's or vessel's location)
  • My Local Time (based on your location)
  • Time Elapsed/Remaining (differential time intervals instead of timestamps)

Let's have a closer look at the effect of the Default option to get a better understanding of the available options:

As a rule of thumb, the timestamps referring to the main MarineTraffic assets like Vessels and Ports are presented using the Local Time of the subject asset. For example, the voyage-related arrival and departure timestamps shown at any Vessel InfoWindow will be adjusted to each Port's Local Time.


Note also that there is always a reference to UTC difference as:

  • UTC can be used as a single point of reference regardless of time zones
  • the AIS protocol itself transmits information using this format


Of course, time differentials are also used by default if they make more sense like when presenting Time to Destination or information related to the age of the last received position.


Using the available options in the Preferences section, you can select the Time Presentation way that better suits your needs and your interaction with the MarineTraffic platform.

Note also that in certain MarineTraffic pages or page-areas, you can change how time gets presented on-the-fly.

For example, within a Port Details page:


Or in the Filters area of the available Lists when searching for Vessels/Port Calls/Expected Arrivals etc.


However, this choice will only affect the page you are viewing at that time, so, bear in mind that only the choice you make in the Preferences menu has a global effect throughout MarineTraffic.