When it comes to moving boxes, Las Vegas residents have many options. There are tons of places where you can buy whatever boxes you might need. But is this your best option? We can help you find boxes for moving and provide you with some other tips that will make packing much easier.

1. Find Free Boxes

Boxes are expensive, but there are so many ways to score some free boxes that you really shouldn’t have to pay an arm and a leg for moving supplies. Here’s a quick list of places where you can find or ask for free boxes:

Online Options – Check out Freecycle, Craigslist, Next Door and those little garage sale groups on Facebook. This is a great way to snatch up boxes from someone who recently moved.

Scope Out The Neighborhood – If someone in your neighborhood just moved in, offer to come and grab their boxes. It saves them the trouble of breaking the boxes down, and they’ll be ready for packing. Also, if you see some boxes curbside, snatch them up.

Check Your Local Shops – Every business, from grocery stores to coffee shops to liquor stores and clothing stores receives tons of boxes. Typically, employees just break them down and toss them, so it doesn’t hurt to ask while shopping if they have a few empty boxes they can give you.

McDonald’s – McDonald’s French fry boxes practically have their own cult following. We don’t mean the boxes you get when you order fries; we mean the boxes that actually hold the frozen fries. These are small and sturdy and perfect for items such as books, DVDs, etc. We assume that other fast food eateries also can supply you with boxes, as well, so don’t forget about checking out In & Out and other hamburger hot spots.

2. Wardrobe Boxes – Yay or Nay?

Wardrobe boxes are so convenient, after all you just grab your clothes from the closet and hang them in the box and seal. Voila! It’s just that simple, what could be wrong? Well, those wardrobe boxes are pretty much the most expensive boxes out there, and they cost about $13 per box and that really adds up.

While a garment box saves time, if you want to save money, there are a couple options to consider. You could slip a bunch of clothes (still on their hangers) into a black garbage bag. Tie up the end of the bag just below the hooks of the hangers. Carefully fold this bag in half and place it into one of those free boxes you scored off of Craigslist.

Don’t forget about using your suitcases for packing. If you have hanging bags, you can just move items from the closet straight into the bag. Otherwise, take off the hangers, fold stuff up and place it into suitcases. Using suitcases cuts down on the number of boxes for moving, and this definitely can save you some money.

Still, purchasing a wardrobe box or two can be a great idea for items such as expensive suits and fancy dresses. These are items that you might want to be handled as delicately as possible, so it might be wise to invest in at least one wardrobe box for these pricier items.

3. Hit Up The Dollar Store

Of course, packing isn’t just about moving boxes. Las Vegas has many a dollar store, and these discount havens can be a great place to find packing tape and colorful labels for marking boxes, as well as permanent markers in multiple colors.

We highly recommend that you label and color code all of your boxes. For instance, write the word Kitchen on all boxes for the kitchen in blue ink, and use red ink for all of the boxes going to the master bedroom, etc. Be sure to write a brief description on each box, like Master Bedroom – Sheets & Towels or Kitchen – Silverware & Utensils.

You also can grab some cheap Styrofoam plates and place a couple of these plates in between your dishes to prevent scratches or chips. Also grab some big zip-lock bags and some cling wrap.

Dollar store zip-lock bags are the perfect way to pack up hardware from furnishings (be sure to label the bags!) as well as any small items that otherwise might get lost. You also can wrap breakable items such as perfume bottles in paper or bubble wrap and then place them in a baggie. This way if it does crack or break, it probably won’t ruin anything else in a box.

The cling wrap can be used in several ways. Unscrew the lids from shampoo and dish soap, place a piece of cling wrap over the opening and then replace the lid. This can keep soaps and lotions from leaking out and making a huge mess. You also can wrap items in cling wrap to keep them from moving about. For instance, wrap your silverware organizer in plastic wrap and just place it into a box. Everything will stay in place, and it’s quick and easy to pack and unpack.

4. You Already Have Some Packing Materials

Pillowcases, towels, newspaper, socks and old t-shirts make great packing materials. Rather than purchasing a bunch of packing paper or bubble wrap, why not use what you already have on hand?

Of course, in the weeks leading up to a move, ask friends and family members to save any bubble wrap or packing paper they receive from parcels delivered to their homes, and save any that you get in the mail, as well. If you don’t get a newspaper delivered to your home, ask neighbors to save their newspapers for you.

5. Think About Weight

If you have a huge box, you might be tempted to pack it to the gills with your collection of andirons or your collection of antique unabridged dictionaries, but this typically is a mistake. After all, either you or your mover is going to have to lift that box and lifting a huge, very heavy box is definitely not great for your back.

In addition, a huge box filled with heavy items probably cannot handle the weight and might break open. We recommend packing heavier items in medium or small boxes. While you won’t be able to fit all of those precious dictionaries into a single box, it definitely will be easier to tote the boxes around and safer, as well. For those huge boxes, consider packing items such as blankets, pillows, comforters and other bulky, but lightweight items.

6. Reduce, Reduce, Reduce

Want to pack less? Just get rid of some of your stuff. Anything you purge doesn’t have to be packed and unpacked. Instead of buying more boxes for moving, unload a bunch of your items and send them to your local charity stores.

As you pack, set aside a few grocery bags and start stuffing them full of clothes you no longer want, books you don’t need, DVDs, kitchen items, blankets, sheet sets and anything else that you don’t really need. If you really get organized, host a garage sale and sell some of your items. This can be a great way to earn some extra cash to use to cover moving expenses.

7. Create Some “Open Me First” Boxes

Pack a few boxes of essentials and label these boxes with the words, “Open Me First.” For the kitchen, this box might include your coffeemaker and supplies for making coffee, as well as some paper plates and plastic utensils to get you through those first couple of days. In the bedroom, this “Open Me First,” box or boxes should contain a mattress pad, sheets, blankets, pillows and towels. You might also have a box filled with essential toiletries.

No matter how much you prepare for a move, those first few days are exhausting and anything you can do to make it easier is great. For instance, leave pets at a doggie day care or with a trusted friend for a day or two so that you don’t have to worry about them wandering away. Pack a cooler with a few basic essentials, such as coffee creamers, beverages, yogurts, string cheese, milk and orange juice. Pack a box with cereal and granola bars, etc., so you can grab a quick snack. This is definitely the right time to take advantage of those food delivery services, as well.

As a side note, we highly recommend that you pack a duffle or two with clothes and a box of toiletries to get you through the first day or two at the new place. Be sure to place all prescriptions in these bags as well as clothes, soap, shampoo, toothbrushes and all the basics you need for about two days. This just makes life easier and you won’t have to scramble to unpack clothes and toiletries when you are exhausted on move-in day.

One final note: In regards to the last note about packing some clothes and toiletries. Place these items inside your car before the movers come. This ensures that these items will not end up on the moving truck.

If you are plan a local or long-distance move in the future, we can provide much more than handy tips about moving boxes. Las Vegas residents definitely should contact Move 4 Less to help with every aspect of your upcoming move.

We can provide you with boxes for moving, and even providing you with packing and unpacking services. We also can crate up fragile items and artwork, disassemble and assemble furnishings and much more. Of course, we also can move you wherever you need to go, whether it is across town, up to Reno or across the country.