Competence on and beside the river Elbe

Elbe tour boats and port barges, speed boats and container ships: in the Port of Hamburg, there is a full range of working and pleasure vessels.

But how is this daily level of seagoing, inland, traditional and pleasure vessels coordinated? The smooth movement of traffic on the waterways in the port area is only possible if nautical safety is continuously ensured. Maintaining this safety is the task of the harbour master's division. We keep you informed about navigation routes and berths and advise vessel navigators from our nautical control centre.

All traffic news from the marine infrastructure

Show all

Safely navigating through the daily routine of the port

Well cared for, well prepared: Firstly, the harbour master's division safeguards the constant safety of shipping through the use of navigation management measures, and where possible further improves these.
Moreover, the harbour master's division considers the preventive exercise of functions as its central task. This includes the early identification of disruptions in the maritime traffic and the implementation of appropriate measures.
These preventive measures not only increase safety, rather they make an essential contribution to the productivity of the Port of Hamburg.

Employees in the nautical head office during their monitoring of the port of Hamburg

[Translate to English:] EyeBase

Here you can find all contacts from the field marine infrastructure

All contacts from the field marine infrastrucutres are listed and pre-filtered for you.

Your Downloads of the section marine infrastructure

Here you can find all downloads from the section marine infrastructure prefiltered for you.

Reporting obligations and declaration of use of the port

Ships that enter the port of Hamburg, operate there, or use its facilities and/or services are generally subject to mandatory reporting. Port fees and charges must be paid for contractual services used.

The basis for the reporting obligations is the Verkehrsstatistikgesetz (VerkStatG i.e. the Traffic Statistics Act), the Port Traffic Ordinance, as well as the general terms and conditions of HPA Hamburg Port Authority AöR for private legal agreements regarding the general use of the port of Hamburg (General Terms and Conditions), including the Price List for port fees in their respective valid version.

If you have any questions regarding transport, handling, storage, logistics, etc., please contact the freight forwarders, terminals, or relevant service provider directly. An overview is available via the PORTlog web portal, which includes links to the respective service providers.


submit a declaration of port fees to the HPA port fee office, preferably in a electronic way through the webportal MUST-HAVE or in the form of a blank. 

Go to the MUST-HAVE portal 

Please submit to the fee department for inland waterway and port transhipment a port usage declaration (tariff choice) online via the ELBA portal.

A port usage declaration consists of

  • the announcement about the arrival/departure into or out of the port area and
  • the tariff selection for the usage of the port (only if a valid tariff is not already provided).

Usage which goes beyond the scope of usage in the tariff chosen is to be applied for separately with the fee department for inland waterway and port transhipment (EBHS).

The standard terms and conditions for the usage of the Port of Hamburg by vessels (Port Terms and Conditions), including the price lists, can be found here.

Please submit to the fee department for inland waterway and port transhipment a port usage declaration (tariff choice) online via the ELBA portal.

Usage which goes beyond the scope of usage in the tariff chosen is to be applied for separately.

For ships which undertake to use the port yet solely remain inside the port area, the choice of tariff is sufficient. Should these ships pass the port borders (Tinsdal/Oortkaten), the arrivel/departure into or out of the port area must also be announced via the ELBA portal.

The standard terms and conditions for the usage of the Port of Hamburg by vessels (Port Terms and Conditions), including the price lists, can be found here.

Your contacts:

​Hafenamt West

Hafenamt Ost

Hafenamt Süd

Contact Fees Office for Barges and Port Vessels

[Translate to English:] ASW

We ensure a safe and unencumbered journey on water

We ensure the smooth flow of traffic on the water.  We use the most modern IT-based control systems to direct ship traffic in the port around the clock. We take care of the big boys personally: HPA assumes the radar and pilot transfer services from the land to the ship and back. This allows us to play it safe – even when activity is at its peak on the water.

Safeguarding the waterways and shore areas also falls within our scope of activities, as does the operation and maintenance of locks, sea signs and radar stations in the port area. Even if the weather changes, we are on it: effective preventative and early-warning measures allow HPA to secure the port of Hamburg in the event of floods or storm surges.

But HPA’s measures are not only required in the event of severe weather. Our ice breakers also provide flood defence in the event of persistent negative temperatures. Safe and unencumbered transport at all times is the highest priority at the port of Hamburg.

The water is always moving – as are we

Whether big or small, we guarantee every ship free passage through the port of Hamburg. Thus, we measure the depth of the water regularly. Because the River Elbe – like all watercourses – is constantly moving, depositing slit and sediments. In addition, the water level rises and falls with the tide. Our measuring engineers are on the water in a fleet of four depth-sounding vessels. And when it becomes necessary for safety reasons, dredgers come into play. They dredge the bed of the Elbe so the big boys can sail through unimpeded.

Calls of sea going vessels/year
Inland ship's calls a year
km of quay walls
m. TEU. container handling

Use of drones in the port area

Special provisions for the area of the Hansestadt Hamburg

​“From the maritime police perspective of HPA, the operation of drones in the area of the federal waterway and the other port waters may threaten the safety and ease of shipping traffic if the following measures are not met:

A minimum horizontal lateral distance of 50 metres from vessels (stationary or moving – 250m from military watercraft) must be maintained. The course of vessels may not be crossed at a horizontal distance of less than 200 metres (300m from military watercraft). Vessels must be given priority in every case; in particular, docking and undocking vessels must not be hindered. Vessels may only be overflown at a vertical distance of at least 50m, provided the maximum authorised altitude permits this. Deviation from these distances is permitted in the event the vessels are stationary, if their owners have expressly permitted this in writing. The take-off and landing of drones from and on moving ships or navigating vessels is not permitted for safety reasons.

In so far as the operation of drones affects HPA’s rights as owner of (not leased) real estate, additional regulations may be subject to approval. Inquiries in this regard may be addressed to
HPA at as required. 
In general:
Such approval shall be without prejudice to the rights of third parties as well as other existing prohibitions and licensing/approval requirements that are outside HPA’s scope of responsibility. Data protection provisions shall remain unaffected.

Property management

We are landlords and architects. Take a look at our references and exposés which will build your trust in the port as your location.
[Translate to English:] ASW

The HPA road infrastructure

Follow us to the port on the road to success with our future-oriented PORTroad management. Whether you need real-time traffic information, a parking guidance system or truck parking, you will find everything you need.
[Translate to English:] ASW

Port railway

The Port Railway rolls: Directly towards our guidelines, terms of use, charges or pre-registration for our loading tracks.
[Translate to English:] ASW

HPA on Instagram