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Removal Crates vs Cardboard Boxes

Traditionally the ubiquitous tea chest was used for packing your belongings ready for a house removal or office move.

However they were not the friendliest of containers to use often having sharp edges to cut your hands and fingers or that could damage floors or furniture. Moving them was equally perilous since they do not have handles and owing to their size they normally required two people to lift and carry them.

The only real choice these days is between plastic stacking, lidded removal crates and cardboard moving boxes.

So what should you consider when choosing between the two?

Plastic Crates Cardboard Boxes Notes
Ready Made Yes No If you buy 'flat-pack boxes' then you will need to construct each box before you use it, using up brown tape, time and patience. Compare with crates where you simply grab a fresh crate and start packing it.
Long Term Storage Maybe Yes Cardboard boxes score a win here, but only on economic grounds
Shower Proof Yes No It rains in the U.K. Sometimes a lot and moving house in wet weather is no fun, especially when your most valuable possessions start spilling out because your cardboard boxes got wet.
Stackable Yes Maybe Crates are stackable without fear of collapse. You may get away with stacking some cardboard boxes. Depends on the box and the weight of it's contents.
Cost Medium Free to Medium If you can get cardboard boxes from the supermarket or beg or borrow them from friends, colleagues or employers then they are free. Although they will vary in quality and size. If you buy moving boxes as part of a package then the costs can mount up.
Environmentally Friendly Yes No Crates have a long life and can be used on many, many moves. Cardboard boxes will last for two or maybe three moves before they need to be recycled.
Commercial Moves Yes No Professional movers do not use cardboard boxes for commercial moves. Plastic stackable removal crates are the only way to go.

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