Totes vs Boxes and What We recommend

Totes vs Boxes: What we Recommend for Packing

If you’ve ever moved, then you know just how stressful the process can be. And one of the things that makes moving so stressful is packing. It’s a lot of work to pack up your entire life to move. Really, even if you aren’t moving and are just downsizing or looking to declutter your home, you still have to pack things up, and that’s never fun.


Not only does packing require you to put in a fair amount of effort, but it can take a lot of time. So naturally, you want to be able to pack your things up as efficiently as possible, and that might mean you’re questioning just what to pack your stuff into. Yes, moving boxes might seem like the obvious choice, but what about plastic totes? There seem to be some advantages to using plastic totes versus boxes. So what do we recommend? Well, it’s a bit more complicated than that, because both options have their fair share of pros and cons. So, read on to see what we think the best option is!

Which is More Environmentally Friendly?

Obviously, one of the biggest draws of using a plastic tote over a regular cardboard moving box is that you can easily reuse the tote for other moves or just to put other things into storage. On the other hand, cardboard boxes can be easily recycled when you’re done with them, so it really just depends on what you’re looking for.


Cardboard boxes can be reused as well, but that typically is a little harder to do. And just because plastic storage containers seem more environmentally friendly, that doesn’t mean they are best for moving and storage. Don’t worry—we’ll get to that later. Bottom line: if being able to reuse the containers is important to you, then plastic totes might be a perfect fit! It’s a personal choice.

Which is More Cost-Effective?

As far as costs go, plastic totes and boxes almost even out in the end. Yes, plastic totes are going to cost more up-front than your standard cardboard box, but since you can reuse them over and over again, you can avoid buying more boxes in the future.


That said, cardboard boxes can actually be cheaper if you’re smart about it. You can start saving boxes you receive in the mail from packages ordered online, or even drive around and look in the dumpsters behind stores like Costco or Hobby Lobby. We know it sounds strange, but there’s nothing wrong with doing what you can to secure a good discount.


So, as far as costs go, plastic totes and boxes are pretty much the same. Which brings us to our last point: is one really better than the other for moving and storage?

Is One Better for Moving and Storage?

Yes! While plastic totes might look nicer and appeal to the logical side of you that wants to reuse them, they really aren’t the best for moving and storage. There are a few reasons for this.


First of all, boxes come in all different shapes and sizes to best suit whatever it is you’re packing up, while totes tend to be a one-size only situation. Second, because plastic totes have handles and edges, they’re harder to stack on top of each other, making it more complicated to move them and organize them in your storage unit. And while it might seem like totes are sturdier than boxes, the opposite is actually true. Totes can cave in and fall over while boxes will hold true most of the time. Finally, plastic totes can hold moisture in them more than cardboard boxes, so if you’re planning on storing something for a long period of time, a box is the way to go.


At the end of the day, it really is a personal preference on whether you want to use plastic totes or cardboard boxes for your move or while putting things in storage. While we recommend boxes, totes work great as well! Whatever you choose, though, A-Plus Super Storage is here to keep those totes or boxes safe for however long you need them stored away!