This paper analyses two different methods of estimating ship collision candidates. The first one is an analytical approach; accordingly, an overview of various analytical expressions for estimating the number of collision candidates for three main situations (encounter, overtaking, and crossing) will be presented. The second is a simulation approach: the paper will present how to simulate ship movements by replacing them with circles in order to obtain a graphical presentation of ship movements in the zone of danger, including the calculation of collision candidates. The applied simulation model will also feature three main situations, i.e. encounter, overtaking, and crossing, and the results of simulations will be compared with the results of analytical models. The results and conclusions should improve the existing models for obtaining the potential number of ship collisions and encourage new advanced simulation methods.