Where to get free cardboard boxes

Whether you’re planning on moving house, having a clear out, relocating your business or putting items into storage, you will most likely need as many cardboard boxes as you can get your hands on.

Perfect for storing a whole host of different items, cardboard boxes will allow you to move your belonging from A to B safely and securely.

And the good news is that you can often get cardboard boxes for free. We’ve created a helpful guide outlining all of the ways that you can get your hands on free cardboard boxes.

Image of cardboard boxes

Ask friends and family

You will be amazed at how many members of your family and friends will have cardboard boxes going spare, especially if they have just had renovation work or moved themselves. With this in mind, family and friends should be your first port of call when it comes to hunting for cardboard boxes.


Ask local Facebook groups

Facebook is a fantastic platform for putting a call out or searching for free cardboard boxes. Allowing you to connect and engage with people in your local area, joining Facebook groups is a great way to find free packing boxes.


Ask local recycling centres

Many people dispose of the boxes they no longer want or need at local recycling centres. So ask your centre if they’ve put any boxes aside.


Ask a local fast-food restaurant

If you live near to fast food restaurants, it’s definitely worthwhile popping your head in to see if they have any free cardboard boxes. Many deliveries are sent in huge cardboard boxes and you’ll be amazed at how happy the restaurants will be for you to take the boxes off their hands.



Gumtree is another fantastic platform to find free stuff, including cardboard boxes going spare in your local area. However, like any selling platform, it’s a potluck and sites like Gumtree operate on a first-come, first-serve basis. With this in mind, you will need to act fast if you spot some.


Check on Freecycle

Freecycle is a website that allows people to dispose of their unwanted items for free and many people use it to find free cardboard boxes. Remember to always check that the cardboard boxes are strong and sturdy before travelling to collect them.

Image of people exchanging a cardboard box

Ask your supermarket

Your local supermarket is another great place to find free cardboard boxes. After all, the vast majority of both local and the main chain supermarkets get deliveries every single day. The best time to ask for the boxes is early in the morning or late at night as this is when stock is generally replenished.


Check your local discount stores

Local discount stores also receive large deliveries on a daily basis, with stock mostly arriving in large cardboard boxes. Again, most stores are more than willing for you to take their empty boxes off their hands.


Ask your nearest schools

From daily food deliveries to stationary deliveries, you’ll be amazed at how many empty cardboard boxes schools end up accumulating. With this in mind, it’s certainly worthwhile ringing around your local schools to see if they have any available.


Ask your local print shop

Print shops also get a lot of their stock delivered in cardboard boxes, so it’s definitely worthwhile contacting them too.


Ask around local businesses

So many local businesses receive their stock in cardboard boxes. Even if you are able to get your hands on one or two from each shop they will soon add up.


Ask your local off-license

The vast majority of alcohol is delivered in cardboard boxes that are incredibly strong and durable! These boxes are a great option if you’re looking to move heavy or delicate goods.


Ask coffee shops

Next time you pop into your local coffee shop, be sure to ask if they have any free cardboard boxes. Again, many coffee shops receive daily deliveries, especially well-known chain coffee shops.

Image of secondhand cardboard boxes

Find local colleges or universities

If you get in touch with colleges and universities at the beginning of Autumn, it’s highly likely that you will be able to get your hands on lots of free cardboard boxes. During this time, students moved into or out of local halls of residence and have cardboard boxes to dispose of.


Check DIY stores

If you’re looking for large cardboard boxes that are strong and durable, DIY stores should be your first port of call. Due to the nature of the goods that they sell, their cardboard boxes are designed to accommodate large, heavy objects such as paint and furniture.


Look on Freegle

Freegle is another platform that people use to give away their unwanted items for free and there are always plenty of cardboard boxes going spare.


Check charity shops

As many people drop their unwanted items off at charity shops in cardboard boxes, there’s also a lot going free and charity shops are more than happy for you to take them.


Check behind shops in your town centre

Many shops flatten their boxes and keep them at the back of their business property for collection and, although you will need to put the boxes back together using tape, this is still a fantastic source of free cardboard boxes. Just make sure that they aren’t damaged.


Local warehouses

Finally, your local warehouses are sure to have free cardboard boxes available to pick up. The best thing to do is give them a call to see if they have any first before making your way to the warehouse.


Where to buy cardboard boxes if the above doesn’t work?

If you’re unable to source any cardboard boxes using the above tips, you can purchase boxes and other storage solutions on sites such as Titan Self Storage.

Offering box packs, bubble and packing paper as well as furniture protection and labelling, you’re sure to find everything you need to facilitate your move.