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The Best Places to Get Free Moving Boxes in Canada: 19 Easy Options


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Ever felt overwhelmed by the thought of moving and the endless need for boxes? What if I told you there are ways to snag free moving boxes in Canada? Not only will this save you money, but it’s also a fantastic eco-friendly move. 

Key Takeaways

  • You can find free boxes online on platforms like Facebook, Kijiji, and Nextdoor.
  • Check nearby places, including your local grocery stores, coffee shops, offices, bookstores and even your own street.
  • Visit recycling centres, yard sales, and schools. Big-box stores like Walmart and Costco often have surplus boxes. 

Where to Get Free Moving Boxes Near You

1. Facebook Marketplace

Start your moving box hunt on Facebook. The Marketplace is a goldmine for people giving away boxes for free. Just search for your area, and you might find someone nearby looking to get rid of their moving boxes.

2. Kijiji

Kijiji is a website in Canada where people buy and sell things, both new and used. It’s like a big online marketplace where you can find a section called “Free Stuff,” just like Craigslist. 

When you go to the Free Stuff part, pick your location to make it easier. This way, you can quickly see if someone close by is giving away free moving boxes.

3. Nextdoor

For moving boxes, check your local online community groups, especially on Nextdoor.com. This neighbourhood hub not only provides area updates but also offers free items, often including moving boxes, in its “Classifieds” section. If you don’t see any, post your request, and neighbours are likely to respond promptly.

4. Craigslist

Craigslist is a well-known online marketplace with job listings, house rentals, furniture, and more. Visit your local Craigslist site, browse the free section, or post an ad seeking free moving boxes and other supplies. It’s an easy way to find what you need for your move.

5. Freecycle

After Craigslist, try Freecycle for free moving boxes in your area. Join your local Freecycle group online, post that you need free moving boxes, and see if anyone responds. You might find hidden treasures in someone’s garage. Be aware that some Freecycle groups require you to give away something before claiming a free item.

Related: Top Thrift Stores in Ontario

6. U-Haul Box Exchange

Explore U-Haul Customer Connect, a service that helps you find free moving boxes nearby. U-Haul has set up this platform for people who have recently finished unpacking and want to give away their boxes. Simply enter your zip code or city in the search box to discover available free moving boxes eagerly waiting for a new home.

7. Facebook Groups

Explore the myriad of Facebook groups, including those in your local community. Search for groups related to free stuff, swaps, or active community discussions near you. The beauty of these groups is that you don’t have to wait for someone to offer free moving boxes. Simply post that you’re in need, and you’ll be surprised by the responses.

8. Ask Stores Near You

Try popping by Michaels, your local Loblaws store, or even checking out your nearest Canadian Tire. Similar to other retailers, they receive frequent deliveries of boxes in various sizes.

9. Apartment Buildings

Apartment complexes are great for free moving boxes due to frequent tenant turnover. Check recycling bins with permission or inquire at the complex office for available boxes.

10. Ask Your Neighbors

Don’t underestimate the cardboard generosity of neighbours! A friendly “moving soon” message on your community board or a quick chat over the fence can unlock a treasure trove of sturdy boxes you didn’t know existed.

11. Recycling Centre

Have you ever visited a recycling drop-off spot? It’s a moving box jackpot waiting to happen. In many cities, there are several recycling drop-off locations that take flattened corrugated cardboard. If these boxes are still in good condition, you’re likely to discover multiple moving boxes for your relocation needs.

12. Yard Sales

Yard and garage sales are reliable spots to find boxes. When you visit, ask if they’d be willing to give you some. If you come towards the end of the sale, it’s even better—sellers are often looking to clear things out, making it more likely you’ll score some free boxes.

13. Schools

There’s a good chance that there are several elementary, middle, and high schools in your area. Give the front office a call and inquire about any available boxes. Checking at the beginning of the school year is especially worthwhile, as schools tend to receive numerous book and school supply shipments during the fall.

14. Big-Box Stores

Large retailers like Walmart and Costco receive daily shipments. Approach their staff and ask if they have extra boxes you can take off their hands.

15. Bookstores

Whether it’s a big-name bookshop or a small local one, both are excellent sources for packing boxes. These boxes are sturdy enough to handle the weight of books and are perfect for packing smaller items and knick-knacks. Don’t forget to check with local college and university bookstores—they often have extra boxes you can use for your move.

Related: 52 Week Money Saving Challenge

16. Liquor Stores

If you live close to a wine or liquor store, consider asking the manager if you can take some boxes. These stores get frequent shipments, making their boxes ideal for moving. The partitioned boxes are excellent for packing fragile items like wine glasses. Larger liquor stores often have more boxes than they need, so don’t hesitate to inquire.

17. Your Workplace

Consider using boxes from your workplace for your move. Offices receive regular paper deliveries, resulting in an abundance of paper boxes with lids and file boxes. If you work in a sizable office, there’s a good chance they have a recycling room where you can find suitable boxes. It’s a practical and eco-friendly solution for your moving needs.

18. Grocery Stores

Both big grocery chains and smaller stores offer plenty of large boxes. Since grocery stores receive frequent shipments of inventory, there’s a continuous supply of sturdy boxes. Inform the manager you’re moving next time you shop, and they’ll likely let you take the sturdy boxes used for stocking fresh produce.

19. Coffee Shops

Local coffee shops, whether big chains like Starbucks or small local ones get regular shipments of supplies. This includes coffee, coffee-making supplies, and food. You can grab various box sizes, especially smaller ones, for your move.

Related: How Much You Should Save Monthly

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Gravatar for Enoch Omololu, MSc (Econ)
Enoch Omololu, MSc (Econ)

Enoch Omololu, personal finance expert, author, and founder of Savvy New Canadians, has written about money matters for over 10 years. Enoch has an MSc (Econ) degree in Finance and Investment Management from the University of Aberdeen Business School and has completed the Canadian Securities Course. His expertise has been highlighted in major publications like Forbes, Globe and Mail, Business Insider, CBC News, Toronto Star, Financial Post, CTV News, TD Direct Investing, Canadian Securities Exchange, and many others. Enoch is passionate about helping others win with their finances and recently created a practical investing course for beginners. You can read his full author bio.

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