Is cardboard packaging cheaper than plastic?

Plastic nowadays seems to be one of the most interesting topics. It is both environmentally friendly and very unfriendly at the same time. Or at least it can be both, dependent on the type of plastic and its purpose. When it comes to moving, in the last few years there’s more and more talk about using plastic bins instead of cardboard boxes. And the idea is not bad at all. However, some people think that the price is an issue here. So, we’ve decided to get an answer to a question is cardboard packaging cheaper than plastic once for all. Here’s what we came up with. We’ll start by determining all the pros and cons of both cardboard and plastic.

Pros of cardboard boxes

Initial cost and availability

Ok, so as we all know, cardboard is very cheap. Therefore, if you ask is cardboard packaging cheaper than plastic in terms where you compare two similarly sized boxes, the cardboard will definitely be cheaper. However, there’s much more to it. But, more on that later.

Availability is the second thing in which cardboard seems to be inviolable. On the other hand, plastic bins are easier to find today than they ever were. So, soon we can expect to see a tie between these two eco-friendly move choices.

Open cardboard box.

Cardboard boxes are great simply because they’re very cheap.


As we already mentioned, cardboard boxes are eco-friendly because they are recyclable. However, don’t be misinformed. If something is recyclable, it doesn’t mean that it will be recycled if it isn’t disposed of in the right manner. So, if you choose cardboard boxes for your move be sure to give them away where you should.

Additionally, these boxes can easily be repurposed in many ways. You can use them to make some home improvements, or your children can have a play of a lifetime with them. And after they’re finished with them you can still recycle them. If there’s anything left to recycle.

Easy to mark

Since they’re basically paper, you can write on them with pretty much any kind of pen. Although you can write on plastic bins with alcohol markers, the writing will be much clearer and more visible on the cardboard box.

We don’t have to remind you that labeling boxes is very important for a successful move. More specifically, for packing and unpacking parts, as well as for knowing what box to put where in your new house. When you put it like that, you can understand how big of a deal this is, and why it’s so important to choose the right kind of packing material for your relocation.

Cons of cardboard boxes


We all know that it is very easy to break down a piece of cardboard. Also, when water comes to it – it dissolves. Therefore, it’s not an ideal thing if your things will be in storage for more than a day, and careful with that cleaning of your new home. It doesn’t represent good protection from the elements.

Also, since it is very weak it won’t help with protection from physical breakages. So, if you have some objects that are fragile, be sure to put them in special boxes. Or at least try to protect them with packing wrap, or a blanket.

Torn cardboard box.

Unfortunately, the answer to is cardboard packaging cheaper than plastic is positive because cardboard boxes aren’t durable.


This is something that people often forget about. However, cardboard is a source of food and shelter for many tiny insects. So, if you leave a box in one place for a long period of time, there’s a good chance that a little colony of cockroaches will be pleased to declare it their home.

Pros of plastic bins

Now it’s time to think a little bit about plastic bins. Also, we’ll try to determine if the positive answer to the question of is cardboard packaging cheaper than plastic is an indication of a higher quality product.

Water and bug resistance

You can be sure that plastic bins will be much more durable than cardboard boxes. You won’t have to worry about the mold, water damage, or bugs at all. Technically speaking, if you close them properly they can stay in a storage unit for the next one thousand years.


Plastic bins and containers come in many shapes, sizes, and colors. This is important for a few reasons. Firstly, your kids will love them. You can play many games with them and color can inspire them to help with packing.

Another fantastic upside pointed by our professionals from Capital City Bins is color-coding. It’s a great way to determine what’s going on where when you arrive at your new home. For instance, green is for the living room, and yellow is for bedroom. You really don’t want to write on them since you’re going to use them again.

Small black plastic bin.

Plastic bins come in many colors and shapes.


Since they’re made out of hardwearing plastic, plastic bins really can stand the test of time. You can use them for packing your storage unit. Additionally, you can find collapsible boxes so you just assemble them when you need them. However you put it, reuse value of these is uncomparable with cardboard boxes.

Cons of plastic bins


Yes, cardboard boxes are cheaper than plastic bins. However, since bins have reuse value you will only need one set of them for your whole lifetime. So when you think about it, you might as get them now and have them forever.


We all know that plastic is bad for the environment, and therefore plastic bins have to be too right? Well not exactly. A lot of energy is consumed for recycling all that cardboard that is used for a short period of time. It’s not an ideally efficient operation. On the other hand, there’s nothing more efficient than using one thing for the rest of your life.


Plastic waste on the street.

Don’t be irresponsible and dispose of your bins as you should when the time comes.

Therefore, the answer to the question of is cardboard packaging cheaper than plastic is yes. But just if you think in short terms.