Terms & Glossaries of Shipping and Trading

DOP (Dropping Outward Pilot)

This expression is used to identify the point at which a time-chartered ship is “delivered” to the Charterer or “redelivered” to the shipowner. The place of delivery and redelivery are the places where the time charter commences or comes to an end.

What is DOP (Dropping Outward Pilot)?

DOP refers to Dropping Outward Pilot, a term generally appearing in time charters. Dropping Outward Pilot can identify the specified location where the vessel will be delivered to the charterer or redelivered to the shipowner. The place of delivery or re-delivery is also used to determine the place where the time charter begins or ends. 

It is required that a ship should have an outward pilot on board to help it navigate through the channels and berths after entering a port or waterway. As long as the ship safely leaves the port or waterway, the outward pilot can disembark from the ship. And this is the point that is referred to as the DOP point.

When a time charter specifies DOP delivery, the responsibility for the vessel will transfer to the charterer as soon as the pilot is dropped off at the last port of discharge from the previous charter. In the mean time, DOP re-delivery puts the responsibility on the charterer until the pilot is dropped off at the first port of the next charter or the discharge port nominated by the shipowner.

Besides, the moment when the pilot disembarks is considered as a sign of the ending of the hiring of the vessel. Usually, an on-hire survey and an off-hire survey will be conducted in order to check the conditions on a ship before or after the hiring period.

On-hire survey on the ship will be carried out before a time charter commences. And the off-hire survey will be done for the re-delivery from the charter to the shipowner. On/off hire survey reports act as evidence to minimize the possible disputes between the shipowners and charterers.