Are Plastic Bins or Cardboard Boxes Better for Moving?

Moving can be stressful. In fact, it can be one of the most stressful events in a person’s life – but it doesn’t have to be! Preparing in advance and ensuring that you are as efficient as possible, can make moving a breeze.

Plastic Bins or Cardboard Boxes for Moving?

One thing many people ask their moving company is how to pack properly; specifically, they often ask, which container is better to move with – plastic totes or cardboard boxes?

Below we will explore the advantages and disadvantages of moving your household items with professional cardboard boxes vs plastic containers.

Pros of Using Cardboard Boxes

Do Cardboard Boxes Save Space?

Storing cardboard boxes is a breeze. They can easily be stacked, slid into tight spaces, and they are thinner than plastic containers. Best of all, when you’re not using them they are fully collapsible and can be placed back into storage for later use.

Are Cardboard Boxes are Available in Different Sizes?

Cardboard boxes are available in many different sizes. Plastic bins are usually sold in just a couple of sizes.

Are Cardboard Boxes Durable?

Cardboard boxes are known especially for their strength to weight ratio, allowing them to carry more items safely than meets the eye without breaking. These are great shipping boxes for any size move.

Cost of Cardboard Boxes

Cardboard boxes will help you cut storage costs significantly, largely because of their recyclability. Recycled cardboard is usually sold at a mere $100 per ton. Acquiring them in bulk, in preparation for your move can save you some serious money.

Pros of Plastic Bins

Are Plastic Bins Durable?

Plastic bins can withstand a lot of harsh elements. They are waterproof, making them ideal if you have to leave containers outdoors for extended periods. Plastic bins can be reused without fear of getting waterlogged.

They can be thrown around without fear of breaking or caving in.

Do Plastic Bins Have Better Aesthetics?

Some people prefer the look of plastic bins from an aesthetic standpoint. They also make it easier to account for your items and remember what you’ve packed.

Cardboard Boxes vs Plastic Bins

When it comes down to deciding the better storage solution for your next move, it’s worth summarizing cardboard boxes vs plastic bins.

  • Cardboard boxes take up less space and are more adjustable to new spaces than plastic containers. They are easily collapsible.
  • Plastic containers are easier to stack on top of one another for long periods of time. There’s less of a chance of damage.
  • Cardboard boxes are cheaper and more regularly available from any moving company.
  • Plastic containers don’t require packing and sealing like cardboard.

There are some definite pros and cons to both storage solutions, but most moving companies will supply their customers with cardboard boxes for the majority of their moving needs.

More Specifics About Cardboard Boxes

Not all boxes are created equal

Like us, most moving companies sell professional cardboard boxes specially designed for moving most of your items, big or small. Just remember, not all boxes are created equal! Your first thought might be to head to the nearest grocery or liquor store, but you’ll quickly learn that this is a big mistake. Grocery store boxes are not the same quality as professional moving boxes which have the durability, protective layers and quality that you will need when moving your treasured items. It is also important to mention that when you purchase your moving boxes, you can have comfort knowing that they are dirt and insect free.

Affordability and Access

Cardboard boxes are relatively inexpensive and easy to find, as they can be purchased at most moving, storage and home improvement companies. Gently used moving boxes can often be found for free on sites such as Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist.

Durability and Efficiency

Professional moving boxes come in many different shapes and sizes with the strength and durability needed to ensure your items arrive safely at your new destination. There are small boxes which are best for smaller, heavy items such as books, small appliances, electronics, tools, canned goods and more; whereas, thick corrugated boxes are best for your fragile items such as dishes and vases. There are boxes made especially for TVs, lamps, mirrors, pictures, sports equipment, mattresses (though some movers will simply wrap some of these items in plastic) and more.

Moving clothes is seamless when using cardboard wardrobe boxes, as they have bars for hanging your dresses, shirts, pants, coats and other clothes – keeping them clean and wrinkle-free. They also make unpacking much easier when you get to your new home.

It’s easy to label boxes; you can use labels, color coding dots, or you can simply write directly on them with a permanent marker.

Cardboard boxes stack well, edge-to-edge, so they don’t slide around in a moving truck and because they fit snugly against each other, they take up less space, which means you may pay less. If you are paying by the pound, you will also save money as cardboard boxes are more lightweight than plastic containers or totes.

Corrugated cardboard, which is specifically designed to move household goods in transit, are durable and do not break, unlike flexible plastic containers that can easily break when stacked.

Environmentally Friendly

Most cardboard boxes are made from re-used material, can be reused or recycled after you’re done with them, and are biodegradable.

After the Move

Because you own your cardboard boxes, you can take your time unpacking them. Additionally, boxes are easy to fold flat and store.

As you can see, our experts recommend tried-and-true cardboard moving boxes for most moves since they’re easy to find, cheap to buy and efficient. Not to mention, they can be stored for reuse or easily recycled.

So, when you’re ready to move, give us a call at (203) 806-1365 or request a quote online and we’ll let you know which moving boxes are best for your move.