When you think of packing for a move or putting your items in storage, you probably picture dozens of cardboard boxes scattered around your house. This makes visual makes sense—cardboard boxes have long been used for packing and storage. However, these boxes have some disadvantages. Low-quality brown moving boxes can rip, fall apart, and collapse. And even high-quality cardboard boxes can’t withstand moisture of any kind. It can also be frustrating to find cardboard boxes the right size or with the right price tag. So, when you’re preparing to pack up some or all of your home, it’s helpful to know that cardboard boxes aren’t your only option. 

Cardboard box alternatives include a wide variety of items, some of which you might already have. They can give you space, save money, and make the packing process easier. The next time that you need to pack, consider using some of the following cardboard moving box alternatives. 

Plastic Bins and Totes

Most plastic containers can handle moisture and fluctuating temperatures, which makes them an excellent option for storage. While some of the trailers are refrigerated or climate-controlled at AAA Mobile Storage, most standard storage units aren’t. In those situations, you’ll want to store your items in a plastic tote. Watch to make sure that you don’t fill your bin too full. A full bin might be too heavy to lift, and the lid might not close properly.


Suitcases are made to be durable and store things. And unless you’re traveling, your suitcase probably isn’t being used for anything anyway. Put your suitcase to good use by packing the items you want to store in it. Suitcases are perfect for packing clothes, towels, and rags. If you want to store heavier items like cookware in your suitcase, make sure you have a reinforced suitcase.


In a pinch, you can use clothes hampers to hold your miscellaneous items. If you do decide to pack with a hamper, try to keep like things together, as you would in a box. This method will help you remember where you put things, and it makes it easier when you need to get similar items out at the same time.

Reusable Plastic Moving Boxes

Part of the problem with brown cardboard boxes is the waste. Several moving companies have decided to combat this by providing reusable moving boxes. Reusable moving boxes are similar to plastic totes, but you get to return them to your moving company once you’re done. If you’re packing for a move, reach out to your moving company to see if they offer these alternatives. Keep in mind that this storage solution doesn’t work if you plan to use the containers long-term in storage.

Ditch the Cardboard Box

If you’re planning to start packing soon, ditch the cardboard boxes. Whether you’re packing for a move to a new home or a move into storage, you can use several other packing materials besides cardboard. Pack using plastic bins, suitcases, and hampers that you probably already have on hand to save money and space. If you’re moving, talk to a few local moving companies to find one that provides reusable moving boxes. Once you’ve packed everything, reach out to AAA Mobile Storage to find the right storage container or storage trailer for you.

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