We compared the durability and affordability of moving boxes offered by the biggest retailers to help you find the best place to buy your boxes.
Where to Get Moving Boxes
It’s not that simple to find cheap boxes that hold up during a move. And moving boxes and moving supplies add up. If you’re moving or even storing some of your belongings to make space in your home, there are a lot of cost-effective ways to pack your stuff. Here are our top picks for affordable, durable boxes to buy (and even some tips on how to find free ones.)
- : Best if you shop online
- : Best if you need to buy other necessities in-store
- : Best if you have home improvement projects
- : Best if you need to see box details online before you buy in-store
- : Best if you’re renting a moving truck or storage unit
This is a list of recommendations for the best moving boxes and where to buy them, but we know that moving costs can add up quickly. If you're looking to save a few bucks, we’ve got a whole guide to the cheapest moving boxes.
Amazon—Best online shopping
Amazon is best for shopping online
As one of the world’s largest online retailers, Amazon sells a wide variety of boxes at the click of a button. Whether you’re looking for a specific size or a specialty box to pack your large TV, you’ll likely find a box that fits your needs.
Amazon has plenty of options, of course, but it’s also the best place to learn how each box holds up in the real world. Each item has a ton of customer reviews, which can help you decide if clicking the “buy now” button is actually a good idea.
One thing to note: most of Amazon’s boxes come in packs, so you might have a hard time if you just need one box. One of our other recommendations may be a better choice if you aren't packing much.
Why we recommend Amazon for moving boxes
- You can buy boxes without leaving your couch.
- Amazon Prime members receive free two-day shipping.
- Amazon delivers boxes right to your door (or wherever you choose).
- User reviews help you know you’re buying quality boxes.
Look for boxes specifically designed for heavy-duty hauling or boxes made for packing specialty items (your TV or glassware), and don't forget to invest in solid packing materials.
Walmart—Best in-store purchases
Walmart is best for box shoppers who need other stuff too
Walmart carries moving boxes—and just about anything else you need—under one roof.
Walmart offers a large variety of moving boxes both online and in its stores. You also have the option to order your boxes on Walmart’s website and pick them up at your local store on the same day—an added level of convenience during a busy move or home renovation project. And, if you need other supplies for your move, you can pick those up at the same time.
Why we recommend Walmart for moving boxes
- With nearly 5,000 stores nationwide, you’ll likely find a Walmart close to home.
- Many Supercenters are open 24/7, so you can grab more boxes at 4 a.m. on the day of your move.
- You can select your local store on Walmart’s website and browse in-stock inventory from home.
There's a lot more to moving than collecting boxes and packing supplies. Print out our comprehensive moving checklist to ensure you get everything done.
Lowe's—Best for home projects
Lowe’s is best for in-store home-improvement shoppers
Unlike Walmart, you can’t pick up your boxes and groceries at Lowe’s (unless you eat bird seed).
Lowe’s does, however, carry a wide selection of tools, lumber, and home fixtures in addition to moving and packing supplies, which makes it a one-stop shop if you’re buying boxes to pack in conjunction with a big DIY project you’re tackling.
Like Walmart, Lowe’s offers online ordering with in-store pickup, and you’ll find specialty boxes for packing up your clothes, dishes, and electronics.
Why we recommend Lowe’s for moving boxes
- When shopping online, you can filter by items available at nearby Lowe’s locations and see what’s in stock on each product page.
- Lowe’s sells tools and materials for DIY projects.
Home Depot—Best project guides
Home Depot is best for box shoppers who need details
Home Depot offers many of the same benefits as Lowe’s, including a large selection of home improvement tools, but Home Depot’s online shopping experience stands out between the two. In addition to a large selection of moving boxes, the website shows you a visual representation of each box’s dimensions, how many boxes are in stock at your local store, and project guides that cover basic moving and packing tips.
Why we recommend Home Depot for moving boxes
- HomeDepot.com provides more product information than other retailers’ websites.
- It offers a basic moving guide to help you ensure you buy all the materials you need.
- You can order packing kits for specific house or apartment sizes that ship for free to your local store.
- Home Depot sells tools and materials for DIY projects.
U-Haul—Best with moving truck rentals
U-Haul is best for box shoppers renting a truck
U-Haul is one of our top picks on our Best Moving Truck Rental Companies list—and if you’re planning to rent a truck from U-Haul for your DIY move, you might as well buy your boxes there too!
Like the other companies on our list, U-Haul has a large variety of moving boxes and kits that you can purchase both online and in store. In addition to its selection of moving boxes, U-Haul also sells specialty supplies like storage bags and disposable moisture absorbers for preparing items for long- or short-term storage.
Why we recommend U-Haul for moving boxes
- You can purchase moving kits and storage supplies in addition to boxes.
- Select items are cheaper with in-store pickup.
Looking for boxes on a budget? All of the companies we've called out here offer wallet-friendly options. Learn more in our guide to cheap moving boxes.
Any of our recommended retailers will suffice for your moving needs. Amazon is best if you shop online while Walmart is best when you're already making in-store purchases. If you have home improvement goals, definitely go with Lowe's. Home Depot offers the best product details for those who want more information, while U-Haul is practical if you're renting a moving truck or storage.
If you still can't find what you're looking for, try one of these other retailers:
There’s more to moving than getting your belongings from A to B. If setting up insurance, internet, utilities, or home security services while planning your move makes you hyperventilate, we’ve got an answer for you!
Move.org offers a free, all-in-one solution that provides you with a personal concierge who will assist you in setting up all those services (and more!). From finding the best mover in your area, to forwarding your mail to your new address, our moving concierge removes the hassle of self setup and helps you save money.
Moving box FAQs
How many moving boxes will I need?
Use a moving box calculator to estimate the number of boxes you’ll need. (Don't forget to make a home inventory while you're at it.) If you’re buying boxes, make sure you can return the ones you don’t use—this ensures you’ll have enough space but don’t have to spend more money than necessary. You can also purchase “moving kits” that include an assortment of boxes and moving supplies.
How do I choose the right types of moving boxes?
The best boxes for your needs will depend on your budget and what you’re moving. Standard moving boxes are perfect for books, kitchen items, and clothing. For expensive or breakable items, specialty boxes (made for glasses or dishes, for example) can save money and heartache in the long run. Mirrors and framed art require extra protection during a move—picture moving boxes will do the trick.
Not all boxes hold up equally against the tossing and jostling that happens in the back of a moving truck. One of the most common customer complaints about moving boxes is that items packed inside end up broken due to dents and tears. Make sure to choose heavy-duty boxes for heavier items.
Getting the right boxes for your dishes and fragile glassware is only half the equation. You've also got to pack them correctly. Check out our guide to packing your kitchen to ensure every plate, glass, and heirloom in your kitchen arrives in one piece.
Where can I get free moving boxes?
When you’re on a super tight budget, the best moving boxes are the ones that are free! You may be able to find free boxes in a few places:
- On boxgiver.com, which allows people to give away moving boxes and even packing supplies to others in the community who could reuse them
- Via U-Haul’s Customer Connect, an online bulletin board that matches people who have boxes to give away with people who need them
- Through moving companies, which sometimes offer seasonal specials for free moving supplies
Big-box stores and retail chains are also good sources of free boxes. The trick is to call ahead, speak with a manager, and ask that some boxes be set aside before they are flattened for recycling. Look for boxes that are clean and sturdy enough to hold your belongings. Be sure to avoid produce boxes since the last thing you want to do is to bring bugs along on your move.
Are there reusable moving boxes?
Cardboard boxes aren’t the only game in town. You can pack into containers you already have, such as suitcases, duffel bags, garment bags, and plastic storage totes. Here are a few of our favorite reusables for you to consider.
We highly recommend storage bins and totes, which serve double-duty as secure storage for seasonal items that you want to pack away in your basement, closets, or garage.
Another eco-friendly alternative to the humble cardboard box: sturdy reusable plastic boxes that you can rent for your move. ZippGo and BungoBox deliver the boxes to you and then pick them up after your move. Renting is an ideal option if you want to go the reusable route but don't have space in your new home for a bunch of bins.
Do moving companies offer moving boxes?
Many full-service moving companies offer moving boxes, packing materials, and other moving supplies like bubble wrap, blankets for furniture, markers, and tape. If you're looking for a convenient, one-stop-shop moving experience, be sure to mention to your moving company that you're interested in moving boxes.
What packing supplies do I need?
To safely pack your belongings, you'll need some moving supplies besides boxes. We recommend a combination of bubble wrap, packing paper, and styrofoam (packing peanuts) in addition to items you already have—like towels and clothing—to cushion your fragile items.
Check out our five-step checklist to make packing easier.
Are you buying boxes for an upcoming move? Depending on your size and type of move and where you are moving, here are some moving essentials to consider: