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Temporary storage warehouses: definition and value for business

Posted by oleg on 18.01.2021
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Temporary storage warehouses: definition and value for business

Generally, a warehouse is a type of logistics real estate companies rent for long-term using. The terms may range between 1 to 5 years. However, there are cases when companies need to store goods in small quantities for a short time (from a few weeks or months). 

Some companies have to rent a warehouse to store items for a short time. But it’s not appropriate, as they need to cover renting costs, purchase warehousing equipment, and hire stuff. Secondly, they use only a small part of usable storage space, but pay for all warehousing areas. 

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In the article, you’ll discover what premises you can store goods for a short time, and learn what a temporary storage warehouse is, and how it differs from other logistics real estate types.

What is a temporary storage warehouse?

The term “temporary storage warehouse” (commonly used abbreviation “TSW”) has several definitions. 

In professional literature, official documentation, and logistics dictionaries, a temporary storage warehouse is a premise to store imported goods until custom clearance. Goods are stored here until the freight owner will get permission from the customs house to cross a border.

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Thus, the term is used in foreign trade activity sphere. Temporary storage warehouses are equipped to work with material handling, weigh goods and provide other services in warehousing areas. Generally, temporary storage warehouses are located near highways, airports, crossing points, railway stations, etc. 

It should be noted that some companies have a different meaning for temporary storage warehouses. The second commonly used definition is about a premise to store goods for a short term. 

Generally, logistics providers offer to rent a number of pallet positions to meet business requirements. So, a company has economic benefits, as it only has usable storage space. Also, temporary storage is called buffer storage. You can learn more about buffer storage warehouses in another article. The main benefit of temporary storage warehouses is short-term renting conditions (from 1 week or more). 

It should be noted that the first definition of temporary storage warehouses, referred to in our article, is legal meaning. It has been included in dictionaries and customs law. However, the second definition, referred to in our article, is also commonly used among 3PLs and businesses. So, learn information on a site before ordering services.

Temporary and bonded warehouses: what are the differences?

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Often, the definitions of temporary storage and bonded warehouses may seem similar. But it’s clearly mistaken. According to customs law, the premises have different functions. When crossing a border, goods are stored in both types of warehouses. But there are a lot of differences. 

For example, according to customs laws, goods can be stored only 90 calendar days (3 months) in temporary storage warehouses, and 1095 calendar days (3 years) in bonded warehouses. It should be noted that you can also apply to a warehouse keeper to extend possession of goods for 30 days (4 months in total) in temporary storage warehouses. 

Moreover, by keeping freights in temporary storage warehouses, you have to pay custom duties. But if your goods are stored in bonded warehouses, you can include the cost of custom duties to customers. The list of sanctioned operations on both warehouses are different. 

In a bonded warehouse you can: 

  • Consolidate and form consignments. 
  • Process parcels for further delivery. 
  • Sort. 
  • Pack and repack. 
  • Label. 
  • Work with material handling. 
  • Take samples or specimens of goods. 
  • Sell goods directly from the warehouse. 

In a temporary storage warehouse, you can only operate your goods were stored in optimal conditions: 

  • Move goods around the warehouse. 
  • Inspect freight. 
  • Weigh. 
  • Remove the package integrity violations. 
  • Take samples or specimens.

You’re not allowed to sell products directly from the warehouse until custom clearance. 

Both types of warehouses can be located beyond crossing points. In such a case, goods are stored here if the delivery of the end-user is impossible in other conditions. 

We’ve prepared a spreadsheet of temporary storage and bonded warehouses differences for your convenience.

Factors Temporary storage warehousesBonded warehouses
How long goods can be stored3 months (4 months, when applying to a warehouse keeper). You have to consider usable shelf time3 years. You have to consider usable shelf time
What operations you can do in a warehouseOperations to deliver optimal storage conditions onlyAny
Can you sell goods directly from a warehouse?NoYes
What custom formalities you can doWarehouse procedure onlyAny
Can you transfer vested interests to third parties?NoYes

You may wonder what is the best way to store your goods. To answer the question, you should understand what your company does. Bonded warehouses are suitable for a business that operates with large consignments of goods. Then, you can do presales preparations, don’t pay duties, etc. If you have small consignments of goods, just use temporary storage warehouses services.

What services are included in the price of temporary storage?

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Temporary storage warehouse service is a whole set of operations. So, the cost depends on a logistics provider and business requirements. For example, the list of services may include: 

  • Goods acceptance in a warehouse. 
  • Material handling. 
  • Storage. 
  • Parking services for transport, etc. 

Also, the final price depends on a freight’s dimensions. The larger size, the higher price.

Types of temporary storage warehouses?

Classification by classes and other options is acceptable to use for temporary storage warehouses. You can learn more about the existing warehouse classifications in our article

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However, there are 2 types of temporary storage warehouses: 

  1. Opened. There are no limitations on the number of parties that can store goods. 
  2. Closed. You need to sign an agreement with a warehouse keeper to store goods here. Moreover, such premises are suitable for storing a narrow range of commodities (for example, goods with the same storage conditions, limited editions of items). So, there is only one freight owner in closed temporary storage warehouses.

Temporary storage warehouses in Ukraine: where to find?

Is your company looking for a temporary storage warehouse? Ask logistics providers for help. Generally, large 3PLs provide such services. You can find a partner on WareTeka. 

If your company is small-sized and is looking for short-term temporary storage, our platform’s experts can help you. We offer buffer storage warehouses services. To be assisted, just contact our experts and tell us more about your business: 

  • Your monthly turnover. 
  • How many items you need to store.
  • How long you need to store. 
  • Special storage conditions. 

We’ll process the information and provide you with several options from 3PLs. You’ll learn exact storing costs, prices for material handling, etc. 3PL providers keep your goods in warehouses by pallets. So, you pay only for usable space. 

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At the moment, our platform aggregates data from 10 logistics providers. Here, you can explore relevant information about temporary storage conditions in Kyiv, Odessa, Kharkiv, Lviv, etc. Moreover, we collaborate with small local logistics companies, so we can offer you storage solutions even in minor Ukrainian settlements.

Frequently asked questions

🔹 What companies need temporary storage services?

The service is suitable for companies that need to store goods for short periods of time.

🔸 Should I need to rent all storage space?

No, you pay only for required space. Generally, logistics providers note the price for one pallet position. 

🔹 Where can I get temporary storage services?

You can contact logistics providers directly. But note you need to search for several options and choose the best one. You can also ask for help from our experts. Wareteka finds a warehouse that feets business requirements and gives you exact costs.


There are several definitions of a temporary storage warehouse. According to customs law, it’s a premise to store imported goods until customs clearance. 

The second definition: temporary storage warehouses are premises to store goods for a short time. Generally, they are used to keep stocks and smooth consumption. Moreover, short-term storage is a great option for SMBs, and seasonal businesses. 

Are you looking for a warehouse? Contact WareTeka to find the solution that meets your business requirements.

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