Tampa Guide to Free & Cheap Moving Boxes  (2024)


Moving to Tampa can be expensive, but there are ways to save money if you’re relocating on a budget. To help you cut down on costs and expenses during your move, we’ve compiled a list of the best places to find free and cheap moving boxes in Tampa!

  • Should You Buy or Get Free Moving Boxes?
  • Where to Get Free Moving Boxes in Tampa
  • Where to Buy Cheap Moving Boxes in Tampa
  • Where to Recycle Moving Boxes in Tampa

Should You Buy or Get Free Moving Boxes?

One important decision you’ll have to make during your move is whether to buy new moving boxes or find used boxes for free. Each option comes with its own benefits and considerations.

Why you should buy new moving boxes:

  • Uniformity: Professional Tampa moving companies prefer uniform box sizes to make loading their moving trucks more efficient.
  • Specific Sizes: Depending on your needs, you can buy different types of moving boxes in a variety of sizes and styles such as TV moving boxes, dish packs, and wardrobe boxes.
  • Quality Assurance: New moving boxes are typically clean and durable.
  • Convenience: Purchasing boxes for your move will save you the time it takes to locate used moving boxes.

Why you should get used, free moving boxes:

  • Cost-Effective: Free boxes will help reduce moving costs.
  • Sustainability: Used moving boxes are an eco-friendly way to reduce waste.

Where to Get Free Moving Boxes in Tampa

Moving on a budget? There are plenty of places to acquire free Tampa moving boxes. Visit nearby stores, browse social media, and check out community ads. From your local Tampa grocery stores and recycling centers to online marketplaces, there are plenty of options to find gently used moving boxes in Tampa, FL!

Online Exchanges in Tampa

You can find free and used moving boxes in Tampa on several different online platforms like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Nextdoor, Freecycle, and more.

  • Facebook Marketplace: Check out the Tampa Facebook Marketplace to find local listings of free and used moving boxes.
  • Facebook Groups like “Tampa Buy/Sell/Trade”: Local groups like “Tampa Buy/Sell/Trade” provide a convenient place for people to obtain boxes, with prices ranging from free to $25 for a bundle. And groups like “Buy Nothing New Tampa/Tampa Palms, FL,” part of the Buy Nothing Project, allows people to make requests for needed, free items.
  • Craigslist: Browse the Tampa free stuff section and search moving boxes to find free boxes and other moving supplies in your area.
  • Nextdoor: Check out Nextdoor Tampa to see what your neighbors are talking about, join local groups, and see local listings where you can potentially find free or cheap moving boxes.
  • Freecycle: Make a post to get, give, and share free stuff in your local community with Freecycle Tampa, which is perfect if you’re looking for moving supplies and packing boxes.
  • U-Haul Box Exchange: Find a Tampa U-Haul location near you to take advantage of their box exchange program.

Liquor Stores in Tampa

Tampa liquor stores can be a great place to find free cardboard boxes because they constantly receive shipments of product in heavy-duty, durable boxes. Some liquor store boxes even come with dividers to keep glass from breaking or knocking into each other, which is perfect for dishes, drinking glasses, and other fragile items. Be sure to call businesses to make sure they offer free moving boxes before you head their way.

  • ABC Fine Wine & Spirits: This large, well-known retail liquor store is known for its variety of beverage options and often has boxes available to pick up from its four locations in Tampa.
  • Liquor Depot Tampa: This family-owned and operated business has five locations in Tampa, which means you’ll have plenty of options to find boxes for your move.
  • Total Wine & More: With its large selection of wine, spirits, and more, you can find moving boxes of all sizes to fit your needs at its one location in Tampa.

Grocery Stores in Tampa

Grocery stores are some of the best places to find free moving boxes in Tampa, since they receive frequent shipments in durable boxes. Be sure to check the boxes for stains, signs of pests, and durability. Banana boxes are popular options, but they aren’t suitable for holding all items as they feature large circular holes. Call ahead to ensure that these stores have leftover boxes and can set some aside for you.

  • The Fresh Market: This upscale grocery store has two Tampa locations and is known for selling fresh local produce and a large selection of wine, and these produce boxes and wine boxes would be perfect for moving.
  • Trader Joe’s: With plenty of rotating food and drink options, this large grocery store chain is constantly receiving shipments of stock in boxes you could reuse.
  • Save A Lot: With seven locations scattered throughout the Tampa metro, you can find plenty of used boxes for your move.

Recycling Centers & Dumpsters in Tampa

Some recycling centers in Tampa may have free moving boxes available if you call ahead of time and ask. You’ll need to check the cardboard boxes for structural integrity, stains, and evidence of any pests, as some of these boxes can be dirty or broken down. You may also need to tape the boxes for extra reinforcement.

  • McKay Bay Waste Management Resource Facility: Tampa residents can recycle at this drop-off facility. Be sure to call ahead and see if they are able to put any used cardboard boxes aside.
  • Northwest County Solid Waste Facility: This Tampa recycling center accepts drop-offs for moving materials like cardboard boxes. Call and ask if there are any moving boxes you can pick up that are still in good condition.

Other Stores & Retailers in Tampa

There are plenty of other potential stores in Tampa where you can find free moving boxes. Some stores to consider include auto shops and book stores, since they receive products and shipments in a variety of sizes. Take time to call these local area businesses to see if they have free cardboard boxes for moving near you!

  • Mojo Books & Records: As one of the largest used and new book and record stores in Tampa, they may have durable used boxes perfect for any move. They are located at 2554 E Fowler Ave near the intersection of E Fowler Ave and Bruce B Downs Blvd by University Mall.
  • Comics & Stuff: If you are looking for free moving boxes, consider this local comic book store, since it will likely have the perfect storage options for you. Comics & Stuff is located at 2304 W Gray St near the intersection of W Gray St and N Howard Ave.
  • The Car Shop Tampa: This auto repair shop at Tampa at 10313 N Nebraska Ave in Tampa likely has a variety of box sizes thanks to its wide parts and services it provides.

Where to Buy Cheap Moving Boxes in Tampa

You can find affordable moving boxes in Tampa at national retail stores like Walmart, Lowe’s, and Home Depot with prices ranging from $1.00 small boxes to $5.39 large boxes.

Home Depot

Home Depot has all the moving supplies you need, including moving blankets, moving straps, moving kits, and more.

  • Sizes range from 17x11x11 to 27x15x16
  • Prices range from $1.38 to $2.48 per box
  • Seven locations in Tampa

Life Storage

From moving boxes to other supplies like stretch film, flat screen TV covers, and dish & glass protection kits, purchase your Tampa moving supplies at your nearest Life Storage facility.


Make your Tampa move easier by buying moving supples like labels, moving tape, and bubble cushion at Lowe’s.

  • Sizes range from 16x12x12 to 24x18x18
  • Prices range from $1.38 to $2.48 per box
  • Five locations in Tampa


Walmart has cheap moving boxes and moving supplies for sale such as packaging tape, packing paper, mattress bags, and much more.

  • Sizes range from 17x11x13 to 24x16x19
  • Prices range from $1.00 to $2.10 per box
  • Ten locations in Tampa

Where to Recycle Moving Boxes in Tampa

All wrapped up with your Tampa move? There are plenty of recycling centers in Tampa to get rid of moving boxes that are left over. Or simply put an ad or post on Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist to resell or donate your boxes.

McKay Bay Waste Management Resource Facility

Tampa residents can head to self-service drop-off recycling station McKay Bay Waste Management Resource Facility, open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

  • Accepts: Paper, paperboard, and cardboard
  • One location in Tampa (114 South 34th Street)

Northwest County Solid Waste Facility

Those living in Tampa can recycle leftover moving supplies at Northwest County Solid Waste Facility, open Monday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • Accepts: Dry paper & newspaper, dry flattened cardboard, and more
  • One location in Tampa (8001 W Linebaugh Ave)


Check out our moving supplies guide to see what you can pick up in store at storage facilities in Tampa.

Tampa Guide to Free & Cheap Moving Boxes  (2024)


Does Publix give you free boxes? ›

Grocery Stores

Local grocery stores, such as Trader Joe's, Publix, and Winn-Dixie, often give boxes to those who ask. Bigger stores like Costco and Sam's Club may also give you boxes if you simply walk in and look for a manager. However, keep in mind that not all boxes are going to be in the best condition.

How many boxes does the average person need to move? ›

Number of recommended moving boxes based on home area
Square feetSmallLarge
900-1,200 sq. feet2210
1,200-1,600 sq. feet3215
1,600-2,000 sq. feet4020
2,000-2,500 sq. feet4525
2 more rows
May 18, 2023

How do I calculate how many moving boxes I need? ›

How many boxes do I need to move based on the amount of rooms? As a general rule of thumb, you're going to want about 10 small, 8 medium, and 5 large packing boxes per room. This is just an estimate, of course, since rooms can vary in size and content fairly drastically.

How many packing boxes for a 3 bedroom house? ›

Determining the exact number of packing boxes needed for a 3 bed house removal can be challenging, as it depends on various factors like the size of your belongings, furniture and also personal items. While a rough estimate suggests 80 to 100 boxes, it's crucial to assess your own situation and adjust accordingly.

Can I walk into USPS and get free boxes? ›

You may already know that anyone shipping a package through USPS can walk into a post office, pick up a free Priority Mail® envelope or box, and pay a flat rate to ship it. But are post office shipping boxes free for businesses as well? The answer is yes, you can pick up free boxes at the post office.

Which carrier gives free boxes? ›

USPS Offers Free Shipping Boxes and Supplies
  • USPS Priority Mail – Flat Rate.
  • USPS Priority Mail.
  • USPS Priority Mail Regional Rate.
  • USPS Priority Mail Express.
  • Global Express Guaranteed.
  • USPS Dual-Use Priority Mail/Priority Mail Express.

What is the most common moving box size? ›

Medium boxes (18 x 18 x 15 inches, 22 x 16 x 15 inches or 3 cubic feet): The most common moving box, this size is good for office supplies, records, toys, small appliances, decor, photo albums and most household items.

How many boxes do I need to pack a kitchen? ›

Kitchen. Your kitchen has various things to pack, including small objects like cutlery and more oversized items like your blender and kettle. This means you'll need several different-sized moving boxes. We recommend four small boxes, four large boxes, and six medium-sized boxes for your kitchen.

How heavy is too heavy for a moving box? ›

The maximum weights range from around 20 pounds for standard cardboard boxes to 60–150 pounds for corrugated and double-walled boxes, with some corrugated triple-walled boxes carrying up to 300 pounds.

How many boxes do I need for a bedroom? ›

Breakdown by room type:
Room type# of small boxes# of medium boxes
Master bedroom1-35-6
Other bedrooms1-23-5
Living room2-43-4
2 more rows
Jun 3, 2022

How do I know how many boxes I need? ›

The most common and straightforward way to determine how many packing boxes you need is to look at the square footage of your home. A larger home will usually have more items, making square footage an important factor in determining how many packing boxes you'll need.

How do you arrange moving boxes? ›

General moving and packing tips
  1. Start with items you won't need right away. ...
  2. Pack similar items together. ...
  3. Keep essentials packed separately for quick access. ...
  4. Label each box by its contents and room. ...
  5. Color code boxes by each room. ...
  6. Allow yourself plenty of time to pack. ...
  7. Load furniture, appliances and larger items first.

How many boxes does the average person have when moving? ›

Number of Boxes Needed Based on the Size of Your Home
Home SizeEstimated Number of Boxes
2-bedroom house60–90 boxes
3-bedroom house80–120 boxes
4-bedroom house100–140 boxes
5-bedroom house140–180 boxes
4 more rows
Apr 10, 2024

How full should you pack moving boxes? ›

It's a good idea to pack moving boxes completely full to stack them stably during your move, but don't overdo it. Overpacking can cause boxes to break or items to get damaged by other things inside the box—and it can even lead to injuries while lifting and carrying them.

How many boxes to move 1 bed flat? ›

How Many Moving Boxes Do I Need for a One-Bedroom?
Apartment SizeSmall BoxesMedium Boxes
1-Bedroom (Average amount of belongings)10 Small Boxes20 Medium Boxes
1-Bedroom (More than average amount of belongings)15 Small Boxes25 Medium Boxes
Aug 22, 2023

Do supermarkets give away free boxes? ›

Supermarkets often have numerous cardboard boxes lying around, and you get them for free by just asking nicely. Visit your nearest local supermarket and explain your situation. Hopefully, you'll get some free boxes in good condition.

How to get a free carton? ›

Top Places to Find Free Carton Boxes in Singapore
  1. Supermarkets and Grocery Stores. Supermarkets and grocery stores are excellent places to find sturdy, free carton boxes. ...
  2. Local Bookstores. ...
  3. Community and Recycling Centers. ...
  4. Online Marketplaces and Social Media. ...
  5. Office Supply Stores. ...
  6. Friends and Family.
Jun 3, 2024

Why is USPS giving free boxes? ›

Free Shipping Supplies Can Help Lower Shipping Costs

Shipping costs are never going to get cheaper, but there is a way that you can save money on packaging. USPS gives its customers free shipping supplies to send packages through certain classes of mail.

What is a promotional box? ›

Promotional boxes are custom kits that inform recipients of everything they need to know about you and your brand.


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