Where to Find Moving Boxes and How to Dispose of Them After the Move

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Getting free cardboard boxes for your move is a simple task, it is not the best solution. If you want clean, sturdy, and reliable boxes in order to make sure that your belongings arrive to your new residence safely, there is one choice: plastic moving boxes. Even on a moving day that involves rain or snow, you cannot go wrong with plastic moving containers. Plastic boxes are environmentally friendly, sturdy, and stackable containers with interlocking lids that provide complete protection of your possessions no matter what the weather conditions might be on the day of your move.

You can rent green containers at a budget-friendly price from Royal Moving and Storage in Los Angeles, which will deliver the moving containers to your door in the Los Angeles area as well as other locations on the West Cost. After your move, Royal Moving Co. will pick up the plastic containers. If you are not on the West Coast, contact a reputable local moving company and they will steer you in the right direction.

Using this solution will eliminate the need to search for boxes before your move and also eliminate the need to dispose of them once your move is complete.

However, if free boxes are your desire, here is how to find them, which also provides the key to how to get rid of them at the end of your move.

Online Options for Finding Free Cardboard Boxes

There are numerous online options for finding free moving boxes, and starting your search on the Internet instead of in your vehicle will save you a lot of time. Craigslist is your best solution for finding boxes online. Go to the “free stuff” section of the Craigslist website and use the following search terms in that section to find free boxes:

  • Cardboard boxes
  • Moving boxes 
  • Moving supplies

In a recycle-friendly state like California, free boxes are always available on Craigslist. Once you locate the boxes you want notify their owner and coordinate a pickup time and location, which will usually be the home of the provider. More container options are available on Sunday evenings or Monday mornings because that is when people will have unpacked after a weekend move. As you can see, doing a search for “moving supplies” might land you some free packing material as well, like bubble wrap and packing paper.

You will find numerous friendly listings on Craigslist like the advertisement we found from Glendale, California: “About 10 moving boxes being given away. Dimensions are 15″ W x 22″ L x 16″ W. Let me know if interested and I will leave them outside on the day you plan on picking them up.” Here is another from Sierra Madre, California: “Free cardboard moving boxes, including wardrobe boxes with metal bars. About 19 in total, currently behind the dumpster at 108 Esperanza Ave Sierra Madre, CA 91024. If you take them, please email me so I can take this ad down.” And finally, one from West Hollywood, California: “Just moved into new place and have 60-70 moving boxes available for FREE. Also, lots of packing paper. Boxes were only used once and have been broken down. In good condition. If you want to come pick them up, they are yours!! Contact me for address and to schedule pick up time. Thanks!”

Just remember to pay it forward by creating your own Craigslist listing when you have completed your move. Using Craigslist is a responsible way to dispose of your cardboard boxes when you are done with your moving job. It reduces waste and helps out a local resident.

Free Moving Boxes from Freecycle.org

Freecycle also has free moving boxes, but the process is a bit more complicated than Craigslist, and the options aren’t as vast. Although, you might find a closer location for free boxes on Freecycle than on Craigslist, so you should at least check it out. Currently, Freecycle has nearly 10 million members in more than 5,000 groups, and everyone on the site is looking to unload something or find something in their community, free of charge. Freecycle is a nonprofit, grassroots website that is trying to keep unnecessary items out of our world’s ever-expanding landfills by offering a way for people to connect and give away their unwanted goods instead of throwing them in the trash bin.

Before you can start exploring, you will need to go onto Freecycle.org and find the “group” that best serves your area. Once you find your specific group’s page, you hit the “search posts” button, type in “boxes”, and you will be directed to a page of listings. Make sure that you “uncheck” the “Include wanted posts?” or the search will count posts for people looking for boxes not giving them away. On the day we searched the “Los Angeles” group on Freecycle, we found several listings for boxes, and some of the listings included packing materials. Once you find the boxes that you want, you have to ‘log in” as a member of the group to reply to posts. You can sign up by using your Facebook account or by creating a username and password on the website.

Again, once you are finished with the moving boxes, you can use Freecycle to give your used boxes to the next person in line. Keep the cycle going!

Free Moving Boxes from U-Haul Customer Connect

U-Haul Customer Connect gives you options for linking up with people in your area who are trying to exchange, share, or sell moving boxes and moving supplies in an effort to reduce waste. When you go to the Customer Connect main page, you will find a list of states and cities. California has numerous of cities, but the options in each location are limited, and most of the listings we found were from people who needed boxes. Therefore, if you are looking for a place to unload your boxes after you move, U-Haul Customer Connect appears to be a great option. On the day we checked, there were 11 folks looking for boxes in the Los Angeles area, from Canoga Park to Woodland Hills to Sherman Oaks to West Los Angeles.

Free Moving Boxes on Facebook

The community groups on Facebook are not as populated as the places above when it comes to finding or unloading free boxes, but it is worth a shot if you are desperate. Look for groups like “Los Angeles BUY, SELL, TRADE, AND FREE STUFF”, and post your need for free boxes, or your need to dispose of boxes, on the group page itself. Although, a better bet is to ask your FB friends and acquaintances if they have free boxes through a status update on your personal profile page.

 Free Moving Boxes on Nextdoor.com

Nextdoor is social network that is specific to your neighborhood. The website’s intention is to bring people closer by networking the news and needs of your immediate community. Currently, more than 150,000 neighborhoods across the country make up this virtual society, which assists people with meeting, socializing, and organizing with their neighbors.

To find your neighborhood, put your address into the Nextdoor website or application’s search engine along with your email address. Then, you will be prompted to provide your first and last name, along with a password, and your sex to get “full access”. In order to verify your neighborhood, you will need to provide proof of residence, which can be done in one of three ways: by phone, credit or debit card, or postcard. All methods to verify your address are free. If you use your phone or a debit or credit card, you will receive instant access once verified. A postcard takes 3-5 days.

Once you are an active participant in the Nextdoor community, you will find neighbors doing neighborly things like creating crime watch groups, reporting suspicious activities, notifying each other of yard and garage sales, and posting social functions like wine tastings, block parties, and barbeques. In addition, you can place your immediate needs on the community billboard. Your particular need on this day is to find free cardboard boxes or dispose of them, and your Nextdoor community, which averages 500 members per neighborhood, will undoubtedly have the free, used cardboard and packing supplies you need to get you moved, or know of a person who needs your boxes.

Brick and Mortar Solutions for Free Moving Boxes

If you don’t have any luck online finding boxes, or you are uncomfortable dealing with online strangers in order to get them, then you will have to go the brick-and-mortar route. Those options usually include making a few phone calls to retail establishments in your area or stopping by local businesses.

Recycling containers are stationed in and around most large- to medium-sized cities, so that citizens can drop off recyclables like newspapers, beverage containers, and cardboard boxes. The recycling containers look like small trash dumpsters, and they often have broken down boxes inside them as well as beside them, if the container is full or the boxes are too big. Also, many large recycling centers with a bit of community spirit will have a spot at their location where people can leave and pick up boxes for reuse. Give them a call to see.

Find Free Moving Boxes at Your Neighborhood Retail Stores

Retailers in your area receive, unpack, and discard boxes as they unpack merchandise to fill their shelves. Typically, these places crush their boxes once they are emptied, so If you can get the boxes before they end up crushed or out by their dumpster, but some local establishments are willing to save boxes for you if you call and ask them.

Restaurants are also a good place to get free boxes. Even if you’re not interested in eating at McDonalds or other fast food restaurants, apparently French fry boxes make perfect moving boxes. There is even a Facebook page dedicated to their greatness. The page called “McDonalds Fry Box Appreciation Society” praises the greatness of these boxes, which are very sturdy, and since the boxes carry frozen fries, there is no grease or smell associated with the containers, according to reports. The Facebook page has become a hub for people looking for boxes all around the planet.

Here are other retail options for finding cardboard boxes:

  • Home improvement stores like Lowe’s, Cole Hardware, and Ace
  • Office supply stores like Staples, OfficeMax, and Office Depot
  • Liquor stores
  • Bookstores like Barnes & Noble
  • Shoe stores like DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse
  • Pharmacies like CVS and Walgreens
  • Pet stores like Petco
  • Grocery stores
  • Department stores like Walmart and Target
  • Dollar stores like Dollar Tree and 99 Cents Only
  • Bars and restaurants

Free Boxes at Apartment Complexes, Schools, and Office Buildings

Finally, free moving boxes can be found at locations where people move out on a daily basis. Apartment complexes sometimes have boxes by dumpsters at the end and beginning of each month. In addition, office buildings have new tenants arriving on a monthly basis. Also, local colleges have students moving into dorms at the beginning of every fall and spring semester.

Regardless of where you get boxes or how you might dispose of them, hire a professional moving company like Royal Moving Co. to move your belongings. If you do, you have very little to worry about because professional movers keep your possessions safe and secure, and they provide their customers with moving insurance. In other words, Royal protects you against any damage that might occur during the transport of your belongings.

Royal has the proper equipment, reliable moving trucks, experienced moving crews, and packing supplies, which all come with one simple flat rate. If you are in one of Royal Moving’s service areas, which are up and down the West Coast from Washington state to San Diego, California, they can help you with loading and unloading your belongings, as well as packing and moving. Whatever your moving needs, Royal will supply them.

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