Did You Know? A twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU), a container, a box - no matter what you call it, it is the most efficient way to move cargo overseas. As Marc Levinson notes in his book The Box, it has “made the world smaller and the world economy bigger,” allowing cargo to flow freely and economies to become international players. The standard TEU is 20 feet long by eight feet high, made of heavy duty, weather and corrosion-resistant steel running vertically, with two doors on its side. When empty, it can weigh 2.24 metric tons and loaded up to 26 metric tons.