DCSA releases Standards for Operational Vessel Schedules 3.0

Beta 1 with new universal service reference coding system

June 30, 2022—DCSA has published Standards for Operational Vessel Schedules 3.0 – Beta 1 to enable the digital exchange of operational vessel schedules (OVS). The standards are intended to be implemented by vessel operators, as well as their Vessel Sharing Agreement (VSA) partners and operational service providers, to enable automatic sharing of schedules and exception-related information. The release also contains a proposed coding system carriers can use to create globally consistent references for three key operational identifiers. 

 This release of the DCSA Standards for Operational Vessel Schedules covers the following aspects of vessel schedules for interregional, intraregional, and feeder services:

  • Long Term Schedule & Coastal Schedule
    • Deep-sea (interregional services) 
    • Intraregional & Feeder Services
  • Changes and Exceptions- Port Omission, Blank Sailing, Inducement, Phase In/Out, Slide
  • Universal References
    • Universal Service Reference
    • Universal Voyage Reference
    • Universal Port Call Reference 

The Universal Service, Voyage, and Port Call References provide a way for carriers to standardise how they refer to services using a common naming convention that follows a set pattern.

Once the test period with DCSA carrier members is complete, DCSA will make the Universal Service Reference available for other carriers to adopt.

Open for feedback

As with all DCSA beta release standards, DCSA Standards for OVS 3.0 – Beta 1 is open to public review and feedback for a three-month period beginning June 30. Interested parties can download and provide feedback at Once the review period is ended, DCSA will revise the standards based on input and publish the official release of DCSA Standards for OVS 3.0 within a three-month timeframe.

The DCSA OVS 3.0 – Beta 1 standard publication comprises the following set of documents: 

  • DCSA Definitions for OVS 3.0 – Beta 1 
  • DCSA Interface Standard for Operational Vessel Schedules 3.0 – Beta 1 
  • DCSA Industry Blueprint 2022.2 
  • DCSA Information Model 2022.2  
  • Associated Reading Guides, where applicable.  

In addition to these documents, DCSA has published a beta API definition on the SwaggerHub open-source API development platform and a reference implementation is available on GitHub.