12 Tips For Getting Free Boxes For Moving

February 26, 2023

Boxes can be surprisingly expensive - especially if you need dozens for moving like many of us do. So, here are some tips to get free boxes for moving.

1. Ask Family and Friends

Asking family, friends, and coworkers is one of the first and easiest places you can find free boxes for moving. People today regularly shop online so they might have some packing boxes that you can recycle. Even if you manage to get just 1 or 2 decent sized 2 ply gaylord boxes, it is a great place to start.

2. Check Local Facebook Groups

Social media is great for connecting with other people, particularly those in your local area. Many areas have local Facebook groups where you can find people that live close to you. Some people in your area might have spare boxes that can be used for your move. All you need to do is post on the platform asking for some free packing boxes and check whether anybody will respond to your request. It’s truly that easy.

3. Check Local Recycling Centers

Local recycling centers will usually have cardboard boxes in plenty, particularly because it is usually where people dispose of them. A word of warning, however, make sure that you inspect them carefully for any signs of infestation or damage.

4. Check Local Fast-Food Restaurants

Local fast-food restaurants are one of the best places where you can get moving boxes. Fast food restaurants such as KFC or even McDonald’s get regular deliveries that come packaged in large cardboard boxes, so it’s well worth asking whether they are willing to spare you a few.

5. Look on Craigslist

Craigslist is a hotspot for all kinds of free stuff, including cardboard boxes. You can navigate the website to find free boxes in your area. If you are lucky, you might find somebody with several cardboard boxes you can have. Remember to check for wet spots and damage since these can make the boxes too weak to securely transport your belongings.

6. Check on Freecycle

Freecycle is a platform where people can get rid of unwanted items for free. If you find somebody with cardboard boxes, ask them how much they have been used, especially if the person previously used them to transport items during a move. You require strong, sturdy boxes for placing your belongings in otherwise you might end up with damaged or broken goods.

7. Ask Your Local Supermarket

Supermarkets regularly receive many large deliveries, which means that they obtain many cardboard boxes. They will likely have a few packing boxes to spare. Furthermore, these boxes will likely only have been used to store groceries or other household items, which means that they probably will be in great condition.

Make a point to head over to the supermarket either early in the morning from 7 to 8 a.m. or late at night after 10 p.m., because these are key times for shelf restocking and you can ask a staff member that replenishes stock.

8. Check Local Discount Stores

Local discount stores, such as Dollar General and Family Dollar stock an extensive collection of goods that they receive in massive cardboard boxes. You will also find other local discount stores selling items in bulk, which means they will likely have packing boxes you can use. They will probably be happy to let you take them since it means that there will be fewer boxes for them to dispose of.

9. Check Local Schools

Schools receive lots of paper, stationery, food and books, that are all shipped in boxes. In case you have children in school, you can easily ask one of the teachers or assistant staff members whether they have any spare boxes that you can use. Alternatively, you can call your local schools first to see whether they can assist you.

10. Check Local Print Shops

Cards and paper are delivered to local print shops packed in strong cardboard boxes. Call your local print shop to ask whether they have any you can use. The bonus is that they will only have been used for paper and stationery type of items, which means you can expect the packing boxes to be strong and in great condition.

11. Leverage Social Media

Besides Facebook groups, you can also make use of shoutouts on social media. Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter are excellent places to put a shoutout on. Your youtube followers just might know somebody in your local area with cardboard boxes that you can use for your move. You might only manage to get a handful of boxes, but you can always try other options on this list too.

12. Ask Around Local Businesses

Pharmacies, electrical stores, bookshops, greengrocers, department stores, the list goes on. There’s an abundance of local businesses that you can ask for free boxes from. Most local stores will offer you good quality and clean packing boxes that you can use for your move. Specifically, bookshops will have extra sturdy boxes to house your breakable or valuable items in.


I believe in making the impossible possible because there’s no fun in giving up. Travel, design, fashion and current trends in the field of industrial construction are topics that I enjoy writing about.

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