When you need it most, there’s nothing more perfect than a good moving box! When I move, I usually need a few more boxes than I had anticipated, but once the unpacking starts, I can’t wait to get rid of the cardboard clutter. I have to keep in mind that while the easiest solution may be to take the boxes to a recycling center, that’s not always the very best choice.

Expand the Box Life Cycle

You know I love recycling. (If you don’t then you missed my series on plastic recycling!) It’s wonderful to recycle, but reuse is better. If you allow someone else to use your cardboard moving boxes before they’re recycled, then you’re going the extra mile to conserve resources.

How do you get your boxes in the hands of someone who needs them? Good question! Try freecardboardboxes.com, a free service provided by usedcardboardboxes.com, a company that buys and sells used cardboard boxes.

Unless you have 5,000 or more used cardboard boxes to sell, then usedcardboardboxes.com can’t take your boxes. Instead, they set up freecardboardboxes.com for eco-minded people who want to share the box love by posting free ads to give away their boxes. If you haven’t moved yet, you may be able to score some free boxes yourself by searching the ads for available boxes in your city or state.

If you don’t want to go online to reach out to box hunters, then you can simply post messages on bulletin boards at your school, office, library or church. (Plus, there’s always the virtual bulletin board known as Facebook!) However you reach out, chances are someone in your neighborhood needs those boxes sitting in your garage.

Avoid Boxes Altogether

We’ve talked about how reusing trumps recycling, but this next option might really blow your mind. You can move without cardboard boxes! Even though their service is limited to certain areas of California, I feel I must mention ZippGo, the company that delivers and picks up reusable plastic moving boxes. Their slogan is “The Green Moving Box,” and their boxes are literally green hued, but also they’re made from 100 percent recycled plastic. And ZippGo says that each green moving box is used about 400 times. Take that, cardboard box!

According to ZippGo’s website, their very stackable plastic packing crates have double the storage capacity of cardboard boxes, plus they’re waterproof and not crushable, with bottoms that don’t fall out. Also, the interlocking lids mean you don’t have to use tape. If you’re worried about grime or ick, then check out ZippGo’s cleaning procedures.

Until a reusable moving box craze sweeps the nation, most of us will be using cardboard boxes to transport our belongings. And I get that it’s easy to feel tired or lazy after a move, but for inspiration to find a new home for your boxes, just think about how happy someone else will be to get them!

Moving? Check out our moving checklist to make your move as smooth and effective as possible.

Tim Eyre

One thought on “What to do with Used Moving Boxes

  1. Considering the amount of space that used moving boxes consume, it is really such a hassle if people do not know how to handle them properly. Thanks a lot for the insights. I read from an article that there are already moving crates which can be folded flat for better storage when not in use.

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