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30 Best Places To Find Free Moving Boxes 30 Best Places To Find Free Moving Boxes


30 Best Places To Find Free Moving Boxes

Written by: Chloe Davis

Go for moving boxes right away with our 30 great ideas. Find the easiest ways through which you can save up without breaking your wallet!

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Moving to a new place is huge. From the day you start looking for a reasonable place to the day you finally move in, the expenses just don’t seem to end. It begins with finding the right home, going through all the listings, analyzing the legal procedures, and then thinking of things like buying new furniture and everything you else wish to add to the new place.



On moving day itself, you also have to pay for the moving services and prepare an additional cost for the special loaders to move heavy items. All of this is enough to put a big hole in your wallet.



However, playing a little smart by planning ahead and being efficient with your move can save you a whole lot of time and money. Getting free moving boxes isn’t hard if you know where to look. Buying them separately would take up an extra cost which you could easily cut off and use for other purposes.



In this guide, we will list down all the possible places where you could easily get free moving boxes. You will be surprised to see how convenient and inexpensive these boxes can be. 



1. Craigslist’s Free Section

Craiglist storage section


Craigslist is widely known for its large library of free items, whether it is crockery, sanitary items, furniture, kitchen items, or storage boxes. Their free section is one of the most extensive free sections of any website with products from every area of life available. Visit the free section on their website and you’ll find plenty of moving boxes to choose from according to your requirements. If you go through several online reviews, you may understand the strength and quality of these great moving boxes that have been availed by some people for free. Most of them are sturdy and available in different sizes. Depending on your need and purpose you would be able to purchase the ones that are the best to stock in your valuables.


Yield: A variety of innumerable (5 or 6 minimum) moving boxes at one go.



2. Check Out The U-Haul Box Exchange


U haul customer connect



Being one of the best moving and packing resources out there, U-Haul has this facility available at every almost all of their outlets where customers can leave their packaging boxes for other customers to use for free. They have enabled this option to minimize waste. All you have to do is to visit your nearest U-Haul store and ask for these recycled moving boxes. You can even check online to know where is the closest option for you to get your free boxes. It will show you umpteen options and you will be really delighted to know that you can get as many moving boxes as you want for your purposes.  If you are worried about the quality do not fret because you have the option of going for the boxes only that you are satisfied with. Nobody will thrust you with unwanted, broken boxes. 



Yield: Free boxes (minimum 3) at your disposal.



3. Get In Touch With Liquor Stores

liquor boxes for moving


Liquor boxes are one of the safest options when it comes to packing material due to their strong finish and sturdiness. As these boxes have to carry delicate glass bottles, the manufacturers build these boxes with utmost durability in mind. Just visit as many liquor stores as possible and ask them to keep aside a few boxes when their next shipment arrives. These are the cheapest moving boxes you can get! Sometimes even before the next shipment, you will have access to their warehouse which is close by or just behind the store. Sometimes it’s up to you to sort out from the tonnes of boxes lying in the huge pile. If you are really lucky, you will return home with a handful of boxes. But you are guaranteed to find at least two moving boxes that pertain to your demands. 


Yield: 2 to 3 moving boxes per visit 



4. Book Stores Have Boxes Too

Book Store Boxes

© geralt pixabay

Books are another item that needs to be transported in durable packaging. They need to be carried in sturdy boxes due to their weight so that they don’t face any damage while being transported from one place to another. Your next destination for getting free moving boxes has to be book stores. Ask around in as many book stores as you know to get the maximum number of boxes for your moving needs. The second-hand book stores may have only a few, but still, there are people who relocate to other countries and who are on the lookout to sell their books. Such people sell large quantities of books in moving boxes and drop them at these stores. So, nothing wrong in knocking at the doors of such second – hand book stores too. For all you may know, you would end up getting many moving boxes and wouldn’t have to hunt further looking for more moving boxes. 


Yield: From small to large-sized moving boxes (at least 4 or 5), many at your disposal!



5. Leave A Request In A Facebook Community Group


Ask for moving boxes in Facebook community group

This is one of the most effective ways not only to get moving boxes but for literally anything you want to do or acquire. Facebook groups with a community of thousands of people are super beneficial when it comes to asking for help. Just post the request of getting moving boxes in all the active groups you’re a part of and you’ll be amazed to see the responses you get. We say that because we have experiences with some bunch of lovely people giving us very authentic details on where we would get the best moving boxes for free. Some even offered us their moving boxes lying at home and our friends who were relocating even availed it. So nothing is as fast as the digital age in which we live, so might as well utilise it to the core! 


Yield: Endless ideas leading to 3 or 4 free moving boxes 



6. Your Office Building



The office is the one place where tons of packages arrive in weekly shipments. This means they have a lot of boxes that are of no use. Often the number of boxes is so huge that they don’t know what to do with all of them at times. Every office has a set day for the arrival of their shipments, so you need to keep an eye on the day you could go and get some boxes for yourself.  So, try to enquire about it from the guard and people who are in close communication with the shipments and orders for office buildings. That will help considerably in getting to gather many moving boxes based on your needs and demands. For doing this, you definitely need to plan well in advance because if you miss the shipment then it will take a long time for the next shipment. 



Yields: New 8 to 10 boxes per shipment



7. Contact Your Local Retailers

local retailers


Retail stores have a lot of storage boxes no matter what time of the year it is. Shipments keep coming to their stores all year round so it doesn’t matter when you visit them. However, since these retailers have an abundance of moving boxes, people automatically go to them when they need free boxes. You would need to check a couple of retail stores to get the number of boxes you require. Call them initially and ask them if they can help you out with it. If you call them and let them know about it they can also keep a few good ones in place for you and you can do your sorting from then on. All retail stores big and small such as Target, Walmart etc have tonnes of shipments coming in each day. 


Yields: 10 to 12 brand new moving boxes every day. 



8. Use LetGo

let go


LetGo is another great option for finding your required boxes free of cost. The app lets you buy and sell second-hand items that are in good condition. You can easily look for all the sellers near you who are giving away spare cardboard boxes. Simply download the smartphone app, enter your details, and start looking for free boxes. If you are lucky you may get plenty of options from different sellers. People who might have relocated recently would have listed their moving boxes on their profile and all you need to do is contact them through the message option within the LetGo app. Most of the people are responsive and you can fix a location to pick up those moving boxes. 


Yields: Free moving boxes as per your requirement from different users.



9. Get Free Boxes From Uline

U line moving boxes


Being one of the largest shipping and packing material suppliers, Uline is the place for whoever wants to get their hands on some packaging material. The company deals solely in packing, shipping, cardboard boxes, and similar items so it could be your ultimate stop for getting moving boxes. To get the Uline boxes, you would need to visit any of their distribution centres or check them online under the search option. They will let you know the nearest centre and you may collect them. You are sure to find luck over here and you can bid goodbye to the never-ending search for free moving boxes.


Yields:  Minimum  5 moving boxes



10. Check For Free Boxes at Yard Sales

Moving boxes for yard sale


Yard sales are undoubtedly the easiest option for getting free moving boxes. In fact, they’re ideal for getting just about anything you need. You’ll have plenty of options in terms of sizes and shapes to pick from. Just keep an eye on any yard sales happening around you and you are sure to fetch quite a number of moving boxes without any hassle. Mostly the sellers would be waiting to get rid of a few moving boxes and they would be happy to see you running around for some moving boxes. We are sure they will happily oblige because we have got a few free moving boxes from several yard sales around our locality. Trust us, if you are lucky you may get really sturdy ones. 


Yields: Minimum 2 or 3 free moving boxes happily allotted to you.


11. Cardboard Boxes At Schools

Woman checking out phone


Schools will hardly ever run out of boxes as they receive stationery, reading materials, and miscellaneous items for curricular and extracurricular activities all year long. Such activities would demand more commodities for a school event and all of it reaches school in moving boxes. So after taking out the items the moving boxes are an unwanted item at school. So the best thing is to ask the school authorities for any such upcoming events and you can avail those moving boxes absolutely for free. Asking them for moving boxes would be a great idea. If you get as much as you want, you would be fortunate. 


Yields: Used, yet good quality 3 or 4 moving boxes that suffice your need  


12. Ask A Recycling Centre

ask a recycling centre for moving boxes


Recycling centers deal with useless and junk materials only, so what other place can be much better for this purpose? All you need to do is to find a few recycling centers near you and ask them to keep a few cardboard boxes for you. Every day they have tonnes of recycling materials coming into their centres. So you are sure to find a good number of card boxes that are sturdy and strong. Recycling centres are the best for such purposes because they have stock coming from different parts of the locality to recycle waste materials. It comes in bulk quantities and that too in moving boxes. So you can get a lot of moving boxes as per your requirement. 


Yields: Opportunity to reuse 5 to 6 moving boxes 



13. University Dorms

cardboard boxes at university dorms


The new academic year promises a fresh haul of moving boxes coming into any university. Freshmen who move into the university dorms bring their stuff in boxes that are seldom used after the move. These boxes are usually free once they are unpacked and their fate is to become garbage. If your time requirement of boxes lays within this time, you are in luck. You can ask the college management or the guards who are located at the university dorms, they would have a better idea of where the moving boxes are abandoned after usage.  You would get some moving boxes but not many. But if your need is just 1 moving or 2 moving boxes then this is definitely a go-to place.


Yields: 1 or 2 moving boxes at the time of a fresh academic year!



14. Talk To An Apartment Complex

Apartment complexes are self-sustained communities. With several people moving in and out of these complexes, they are another perfect place to hunt for moving boxes. People moving into the complexes will throw the boxes out, and the building manager will probably store them somewhere in the area. Asking the manager would be a good place to check whether there are any free moving boxes available. But there is no guarantee whether you would find free boxes all the time. It depends on any family or bachelors moving in and out of the complex. But there is definitely no harm in asking the manager or anyone who is in close association with the apartment complex about free moving boxes and sometimes you may find some volumes of boxes absolutely for free. 


Yields: 2 or 3  moving boxes reserved for you 


15. Ask Someone Who Just Moved

When it comes to looking for free stuff, asking someone who has recently shifted to a new place or office. This could be a great idea because while relocating they would have had so many items which any suitcases or briefcases wouldn’t accommodate. Therefore, moving boxes are inevitable in relocation. Being on the lookout for recently moved neighbours is highly recommended. From U-Haul boxes to cardboard boxes, your neighborhood could prove to be a wealthy resource of moving boxes. Some might be lying unused in their garage or storerooms as well. So just spread the word and we are sure that you will find some treasures out there. 


Yields: 1 moving box + ideas and tips on availing free moving boxes 


16. Check Grocery Stores

Moving boxes in grocery stores


Grocery stores are the kings of the retail sectors when it comes to the number of items they house. This number can reach up to a thousand or more, and these items are usually brought in boxes. Moreover, the nature of the items they house ranges from daily use to seasonal items. The boxes at grocery stores are therefore highly diverse, so you can expect to find the perfect box for your items there. From small to super large you name it and you are sure to find them. This is a sure shot place where you would find moving boxes. If you don’t find it here then you wouldn’t find it anywhere else. This is because stocks might suddenly finish depending on sudden demand, so it is up to the management to keep on ordering new stocks as per the need of the hour. So almost every week or fortnights you’ll find huge fans with commodities paying a visit to these stores. So you’ll find the right moving box of your choice. 


Yields: Differently sized moving boxes only for you



17. Ask At Starbucks

Starbucks cup


Starbucks is a common sight in most states. Coffee preparation requires certain items like milk and cream that are needed fresh on a weekly basis if not daily. These shipments mean plenty of small boxes at the store every week. These small boxes are perfect for packing smaller household items. Therefore, your favorite Starbucks is a good spot for box hunting. If there is any Starbucks close by to your place and you have been frequenting the place, it’s even more easier. This is because you are already a known face and you might have acquainted several people over there. So there wouldn’t be much issue in getting some moving boxes absolutely for free.


Yields: 4 to 5 moving boxes based on their daily shipments.


18. Use McDonald’s Fry Boxes

McDonals Mascot



It is certainly an odd notion to consider McDonald’s fry boxes as a viable storage box option. However, internet users have pointed out that they are highly feasible as well as quite accessible. This is due to the large number of food chain outlets spread across the country. Moreover, the boxes are used for transporting frozen products, making them practically odour-free and suitable enough to be used as moving boxes. The fry boxes are huge and sufficient enough to pack in whatever you require while moving out of your present place. A decent 5 or 6 boxes are really good for your next relocation and getting your hands on them wouldn’t be tough. Just make a visit to the nearby McDonald’s store and get in touch with the store manager. They would be more than willing to help you since they have huge bulks of moving boxes in their garage.


Yields: UNLIMITED odour-free moving boxes as per your need. 



19. Try Out Freecycle

Freecycle is a non-profit network comprising of local communities bonded together as online groups. These groups are free to join, and you can become a member of a group based on your locality. From Uline to U-Haul boxes, and even cardboard boxes, there are many free items that you can find here. You can post your queries and get responses matching your requirements. Whether it’s boxes or something entirely different that you need, Freecycle has got you covered.


Yields: Access to an unlimited circle of groups giving away free moving boxes.


20. Be Sure To Check With Walmart

storage boxes at walmart


Walmart is one of the largest retailers in the United States, making it a treasure trove for finding free moving boxes. Like other retailers of the size, Walmart’s logistics takes place on a massive scale that usually happens every week. This amounts to a lot of free boxes lying around that the store has no use for. It presents the perfect opportunity to go looking for free moving boxes that you need for your move. Walmart is a sure shot option for moving boxes because just like other retail stores even Walmart demands huge quantities of commodities on a weekly basis based on the demand. In order to replenish the materials, they have a few items stocked up in their garage too. So if you get in touch with any of the floor managers, they might be able to help you out with it. 


Yields: Endless number of moving boxes for free.



21. Ask At Walgreens

Storage boxes at Walgreens


Walgreens, the second-largest pharmacy chain in the United States, is another source of free boxes. You just need to ask them beforehand by notifying your requirements. The store usually throws away the boxes or puts them aside for recycling. Visiting during the off-peak hours can easily yield you plenty of free moving boxes that you can immediately use. In their pharmacy itself, they would have a lot of boxes filled in with medicines and other materials. So be in touch with them and inform them that you are in need of those boxes. They would preserve those for you since you have already made the request. Make sure that you approach them well in advance so that they do no throw them. 


Yields: From small to large, a wide variety of 6 to 7 moving boxes absolutely for free!


22. Talk To Petsmart

find storage boxes at Petsmart


Although pets don’t require boxes to be transported, their food and other necessities certainly do. This makes PetSmart, a leading pet store, an ideal location to get some free boxes. Pet food and other accessories come in secure boxes which are usually useless for retailers other than for recycling purposes. This is your opportunity to get free boxes by inquiring about them at your nearest PetSmart.


Yields: Numerous free boxes for you without any hassle.



23. Big Boxes At Target

The target store nationwide is another retail chain that has it all. The stores usually cater to large shipments during weekdays. This is an opportune time to hunt for large boxes as the boxes from these shipments will be readily available. Make sure to go before noon so that the staff is not busy with customers and can easily entertain your query.


24. Costco Moving Free Moving Boxes


Costco, one of the giants of the wholesale world moves around a lot of boxes daily. Such is the nature of their business that they have to get rid of the boxes quickly and efficiently. Costco is known for recycling their boxes or repurposing them but if you call them and ask to set aside some boxes for you, they will oblige.


25. OfferUp App

In the world of smartphones and the internet, everything is accessible at your fingertips. OfferUp App is a great app that connects users willing to donate free stuff with the ones looking for it. Just like other social media groups, the app provides a community where you can find free moving boxes in less than a minute.


26. Check With Trash Rooms At Your Building

All buildings have spare rooms that often turn into trash storage or waste storage rooms. These are some ideal places you can look to scourge some free boxes. Products that are intended for waste disposal often end up here and hence can be a source of free moving boxes. You can check with a janitor or the building manager who can easily show you around and let you take your pick of the boxes.


27. Go On Reddit

As far as communities go, Reddit is perhaps one of the most popular social media community. It boasts discussion groups about almost everything there is to talk about on this planet. This makes it a vital hunting ground when you are on the lookout for free moving boxes. Just post your requirements and choose from the responders to your query for procuring the free boxes.


As far as communities go, Reddit is perhaps one of the most popular social media community. It boasts discussion groups about almost everything there is to talk about on this planet. This makes it a vital hunting ground when you are on the lookout for free moving boxes. Just post your requirements and choose from the responders to your query for procuring the free boxes.


28. Search The Web

 This one’s a no brainer. The options are endless when it comes to searching the web for your needs. Similarly, if you need free boxes for your next move, be sure to search around online and you’ll find plenty of options. Just search your requirement with the location turned on, and you will find all the places near you which would provide free boxes. Alternatively, you may join groups, online communities, or discussion forums where people are willing to lend help.



29. Start By Asking Friends & Family

The easiest way to get these boxes is to simply start asking around in your closest circle. Ask your family and close friends if they have spare boxes lying around. If anyone you know has recently moved to a new place, then there is a high chance that they would have a bunch of moving boxes to spare. You could also ask someone who has bought new appliances or furniture to give you those boxes for your move. For all you may know, they may even have contacts of several local retailers or grocery shops that can give you umpteen number of free moving boxes without any hassle. So all you need to do is ASK! See how less laborious it is gonna be after your friends and family help you with it. Let us also know about your experiences and the aftermath of your big hunt for free moving boxes.

Yields: Used, yet good quality moving boxes from your nearest locality and stores.


30. Ask Around In Your Community


After friends and family, ask around in your local community, like the neighborhood you are living in, your workplace circle, your gym colleagues, or the acquaintances from that coffee shop you frequently visit. Start by asking those who you think are easily approachable and are most likely to help you. Chances are you’ll get a lot of boxes even if just a few people from each circle you approach pitch in. Asking a mere acquaintance for a free moving box can sometimes give you endless opportunities and access to areas where you were unaware about availing free moving boxes without any hassle. So all you need to do is to be on the frequent lookout for some free moving boxes by asking everyone in and around you. A word across your friends may help you with a handful of good quality free moving boxes.


Yields: Access to a wide array of shops that give you unlimited moving boxes.


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