Moving can be expensive. You must rent a moving van or hire a long distance moving company to move your household items. You also need to consider all the moving supplies that you need to buy, such as bubble wrap, packing tape, and other packing materials. While you can go out and buy boxes, there are several places that you can get great, sturdy boxes of almost any size for free. Here are a few places to scope out in your quest to reduce out-of-state moving costs:

1. Retailers

If you’ve never worked in a retail or restaurant setting, you might not have a great grasp of how many cardboard boxes these places go through. Retailers get almost daily shipments in sturdy cardboard shipping boxes, and most are happy to help you by giving away these boxes for free.

Boxes that carry fruit, such as apples and oranges, are great for moving because they are sturdy for heavy items. Remember, a box of apples that comes into the grocery store weighs around 30-40 lbs. These heavy-duty boxes are perfect for books, magazines, small kitchen appliances, and anything else that might break a light-weight box.

2. Online

There are numerous places online where you can find people giving away their old packing supplies. Places like the Craigslist free section and U-Haul Customer Connect are both places to find people who have maybe just moved, or just have extra boxes, and are interested in letting someone else benefit from using them.

3. Local Schools

When schools order supplies, they are delivered in clean, sturdy boxes. If there’s an elementary or high school in your neighborhood, call up the front office and ask if they have anything on hand, or if they would be willing to save something for you as shipments arrive. For nearby colleges and universities, you might have to find out where the custodial department offices are located or find out the number to track down spare boxes.

4. Yard Sales

When people have garage sales, they are often emptying out attics, storage units, and basements full of stuff. Most of these unwanted items have been stored away boxes for. If you’re driving by a yard or garage sale, it could be worth your time to ask the homeowner if they have any boxes they would like to get rid of.

5. Office Buildings

Office buildings are an excellent place to get free boxes because they receive shipments of supplies and, like schools, might not have another place to use them. Go to the front office or call to find out if they have any boxes that they would like to give to you.

Moving is expensive, but hopefully, this little list will help you cut down on the cost of buying boxes that you will just throw away anyway. If you’re moving and your budget is tight, try to think of other things that you can get for cheap or free, and keep your out-of-state moving expenses to a minimum.


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