How to Get Free Moving Boxes

Two Methods:Finding Free Moving BoxesFinding Free Moving Boxes Online

Moving is a process that works best if you are organized and attentive to details. Before you can begin packing, you need to have boxes. Buying new boxes, or even used boxes, from packing and shipping companies or office supply stores can be expensive. Save your money and find free boxes instead. Grocery stores, banks and offices, and recycling centers are often willing to help people out with boxes. You can also look online to find people giving away old boxes for free.

Method 1
Finding Free Moving Boxes

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    Visit grocery stores. Most stores break down and recycle their cardboard boxes, and if you ask to speak to a manager you will probably have a good chance of walking off with as many free boxes as you can carry.
    • Look specifically for produce boxes. For example, apple crates are sturdy and can help you move heavy or fragile items.
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    Check with any large retailers in your area. Bookstores, liquor stores, restaurants, office supply stores, hardware stores and electronic stores will be happy to give away their boxes after they have unloaded merchandise.
    • Find out on which days shipments are received. You will have better luck at the end of those days, when trucks have been unloaded and everything unpacked.
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    Talk to banks and offices. Professional buildings and companies receive shipments too. Boxes that hold reams of paper are especially useful because they have lids.
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    Ask your local schools if they have boxes to give away. The cafeterias might have food boxes and the administrative offices might have supply boxes they would be happy to get rid of.
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    Do some browsing at your local recycling center. People often leave their boxes anywhere that recycling is collected.
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    Talk to friends and family members. Everyone notices when someone new moves into the neighborhood. They might be able to collect recently used moving boxes for you.

Method 2
Finding Free Moving Boxes Online

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    Check Craigslist. Under the "For Sale" heading on your local Craigslist page, you will see a subheading that says "free." That page should include ads from people who have just moved and are giving away their boxes.
    • Post a Craigslist ad if you do not see any ads for free boxes. Listing an ad is free, and all you have to do is say you are looking for boxes to use for your move.
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    Look for boxes on Freecycle. The Freecycle Network ( puts people who have things to give away in touch with people who need those things. Cardboard boxes are almost always featured.
    • Type your location into the search box and you will get to your local page, where you can search ads for cardboard boxes or place your own.
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    Visit the U-Haul message board. While the company would prefer to sell its moving boxes, it has set up an online message board where customers can find free boxes.
    • Go to and type your location into the search box.


  • Remember to look for boxes in all different sizes, since you will be moving a variety of objects. For example, liquor stores often have smaller boxes that are good for packing movies and music.
  • Take advantage of free boxes if you or your spouse is in the military. Veterans are also eligible to participate in this program that provides free moving boxes to service members. Email for details.
  • Ask your movers or moving company if they provide any boxes. You might be able to negotiate a stack of free boxes when you agree to hire them.
  • Check the US Postal Service (USPS) Mailing Supplies page for free or cheap deals on mailing boxes. You will need to make an online account.

Article Info

Categories: Moving House and Packing