Also, if you use non-standard boxes, either your moving company or yourself (if you're moving yourself) will be less efficient because your boxes won't stack well in the truck and you'll have wasted space – doing two runs instead of one, particularly for New York City movers, is a bad way to start your stay in your new home.
Also, dead space means things are more likely to shift during transit, which can lead to breakage.
We'll help you decide what kind of boxes you'll need for your move, how many you might need, and how to go about buying them.
The corrugated boxes for moving are not all made with the same quality and same materials, and they are often not the standard boxes that you see in many retail stores.
What makes moving boxes different from other boxes is that they are designed especially for loading and transporting items onto a truck. Professional moving companies use standard sizes to help them effectively use their truck space.
How to Shop for Moving Boxes
Planning is the most important first step. Complete an inventory of what you have to pack so you can get an idea of the type and quantity of items that you need to move. You can purchase ready-made moving kits online – often delivered overnight -- that provide the right quantity of boxes and moving supplies for your move.
When you are shopping for moving boxes, you will see them presented with their 3 inside dimensions in the following order: length, width and then height or depth. For example, a standard medium moving box will be shown with the dimensions of 18 x 14 x 12, which indicates the boxes' length, width and height if you are looking from the top down into the box.
Moving box manufacturers have created several types of boxes, specially designed for moving household items. Normal moving box types and sizes include:
Medium Boxes (18x14x12) – These are industry standard boxes that are versatile and can be used for a number of common household items. You can use these boxes to store books, collectibles, kitchenware and most of your other household items.
Large Moving Boxes (20x20x15) - Large sized moving boxes are all-purpose moving boxes that can be packed with heavy items, but can still be carried easily. Medium sized moving boxes are best suited for a mix of some heavy household goods combined with some light items.
Extra Large Moving Boxes (23x23x16) – Extra large moving boxes are best suited for light goods such as bedding, drapes, towels and clothing that you do not place in a separate wardrobe box. Do not place too many items in a large moving box as it can become unwieldy to lift and carry.
Keeping Items Safe
The most common cause of damage during a move comes from the vibration of items inside your box during transport.
If you leave space within the box or you have not properly wrapped the items in padding and bubble wrap, you will leave open space that create movement of your items inside the box. With too much space, a sudden jolt could cause your items to penetrate the box and be left open or exposed in the truck for the remainder of the trip.
Insist your movers use quality packing tape, packing paper and bubble wrap. Even if you fill up boxes with clothes, blankets or pillows, you are providing more protection against shifting of items inside the boxes.
This small extra investment upfront can pay big dividends. Just a few damaged dishes or other expensive items can create an expense far exceeding the cost of the extra packing materials. (And as always, check out moving insurance for futher protection.)
Other Important Accessories
Other items that are important to have on hand, along with your quality moving boxes, include: