Do you want to make extra money while decluttering your space?
Empty cardboard boxes are a common sight for almost all households. But did you know you can earn extra cash through these often disregarded items?
You can earn as much as $100, depending on what type of used box you have.
We’ve compiled the latest information about recycling cardboard while making money off of it. Here, you’ll find a list of where you can sell specific kinds of recycled cardboard to make the most money.
Read until the end and don’t let your cardboard boxes go to waste!
In this article
Can You Recycle Cardboard for Money?
Yes, you can make money by recycling used cardboard boxes.
You can find old cardboard inside your house. If you don’t have any, you can ask local stores, restaurants, or schools to score free boxes. Then you can look for places that buy old cardboard boxes at a reasonable price.
Many of them have a website, so it’s easier to connect with them and save time from visiting stores in person only to be told they’re not buying the cardboard that you have.
But how much is recycled cardboard worth?
You can expect to earn $0.50 up to $20 per box, depending on the kind you want to sell.
If you’re going to sell 20 small boxes, you can already earn $10. But if you have at least five specialty cardboard, you can anticipate $100 more in your bank account.
Where Can You Sell Used Cardboard Boxes?
When I looked for cardboard recycling near me, this button comes in handy! Then you can refer to the list below if any is near you.
Check out these top 9 sites and places where you can sell cardboard boxes. Here, you’ll know each website's application steps and requirements.
1. BoxCycle: For Narrow and Bulk Cargo Boxes
Since 2008, BoxCycle has been connecting buyers and sellers of used cardboard boxes. Currently, the website accepts 13 categories of secondhand items with varying prices.
|Moving boxes||$0.50 to $1.25|
|Specialty moving boxes||$2.00 to $7.00|
|Regular boxes||$0.10 to $6.00|
|File boxes||$0.50 to $8.00|
|Narrow boxes||$0.10 to $20.00|
|Electronic boxes||$0.75 to $9.75|
|Mailers||$0.05 to $1.00|
|Packing supplies||$0.01 to $5.00|
|Wine boxes||$0.40 to $4.00|
|Bulk cargo boxes||$6.00 to $20.00|
|Pallets||$6.00 to $7.00|
|Sheets and pads||$0.05 to $3.00|
|Box kits||To be discussed|
How can you list your items on BoxCycle?
- Visit the BoxCycle website.
- Click the “Sell Boxes Now” button.
- On the next page, type in the dimensions of your boxes.
- You can also choose from the categories listed above, then indicate the quantity of used cardboard.
- Tap Continue, located at the bottom of the page.
- The website will redirect you to the New Seller Account page. Provide address and contact details, available hours for an appointment, and listing preferences.
- Click the “Create Seller Account” button at the bottom.
- Once you have a live listing, wait for someone to buy the items.
- After your cardboard has been bought, BoxCycle gives your share in the profits.
2. Boxsmart: For Gaylord Boxes
Boxsmart has been buying and selling used boxes and corrugated scrap cardboard since 1999. It communicates with other companies that are searching for old boxes. It also accepts pads, sheets, and inserts.
Unlike BoxCycle, Boxsmart doesn’t show a price list of used cardboard boxes. Hence, you’ll need to call (888) 551-1224 to know your scrap cardboard’s price.
Check out this guide on how to sell on Boxsmart
- Visit Boxsmart website.
- Click Sell Boxes on the top part of the page.
- Choose between “Used Boxes” and “Used Gaylords.”
- You will be redirected to another page. Scroll to the end, then provide your name, company, city, state, email, and phone number.
- Select between “Ongoing Supply” and “One-time” under the Box Availability section, then click the “Next Page” button.
- On the next page, input box information, including length, width, height, quantity, wall thickness, and design.
- Add as many boxes as you’re willing to sell.
- Provide additional details as necessary, then click “Submit.”
- You will be redirected to another page for more queries regarding the boxes.
- Wait for a Boxsmart representative to contact you.
3. Craigslist: For Few Boxes
You can sell almost anything on Craigslist—used cars, jobs, apartments, garage sales, and even old cardboard boxes. It’s a website that shows classified advertisements categorized according to location.
Unlike BoxCycle and Boxsmart, Craigslist allows you to decide how much you want to sell your used items.
So how can you list cardboard on Craigslist?
- As you visit the website, it should immediately redirect to your locality. You can also try manually searching on Craigslist your location.
- Navigate to the upper left side, then tap the “create a posting” button.
- Craigslist will redirect you to another page. Here, select “for sale by owner,” then click continue.
- On the next page, choose “garage & moving sales” or “household items – by owner.”
- Tap continue, then fill out the form on the next page.
- Provide the necessary details, especially the size and condition of your cardboard boxes.
- Upon completing the questionnaire, click continue.
- Upload clear photos of your cardboard boxes, preferably showing different angles.
- Tap “done with images,” then click “publish.”
- Open your inbox, then search for Craigslist’s message to confirm the sale.
4. Duffy Box: For Tons of Cardboard
If you have many boxes piling up, we recommend contacting Duffy Box to sell your old cardboard. It’s a full-service industrial recycler that has been accepting recyclable items for over 92 years.
Like Boxsmart, Duffy Box buys your old boxes, recycles them, and sells them to companies. However, the company prefers numerous cardboards since it provides the sellers with trailers. This way, box sellers don’t need to arrange for shipping.
How to recycle cardboard for money through Duffy Box?
- Go to the Duffy Box website.
- Click the “Contact Us Today” button in the middle of the page.
- Your email app will automatically open, with Duffy Box’s email address already typed on the recipient section.
- Indicate your name, address, contact number, and details regarding your old boxes.
- Tap “Send” and wait for Duffy Box’s reply.
You can also contact the company through the following steps
- Go to the Duffy Box website.
- Click “Contact,” located on the right side of your screen.
- Scroll to the bottom of the page until you see the “Contact Us” form.
- Provide your full name, email address, and company, if any.
- Type your message, preferably indicating the number of boxes, their types, and condition.
5. Padnos: For Box Cuts and Corrugated Containers
Since the 1920s, PADNOS has been processing scrap materials to recycle papers, plastics, metals, and electronics. The company accepts all grades of recyclable papers and sells them to other businesses.
Aside from box cuts and old corrugated containers, you can also offer the following items in exchange for money.
- Glued cartons
- Double-lined kraft cuttings
- Sorted newspapers
- Hardcover and softcover books
- Sorted office paper
Follow the steps below to sell boxes to PADNOS.
- Visit the PADNOS website.
- Click the three-line menu icon at the upper right corner of your screen.
- Under the Sell Your Scrap category, select Paper.
- Scroll to the end until the ‘Contact PADNOS” section.
- Input your first and last name, email address, message, phone number, location, and preferred contact method.
- Tap “Submit” and wait for a PADNOS representative for any update.
You can also visit PADNOS’ location page for its recycling center’s phone number.
6. Recycler Finder: For Searching Local Recyclers
If you only have a few used cardboard boxes and have difficulties finding a buyer, we recommend using Recycler Finder.
Through this website, you can locate a recycling facility within 50 miles of your zip code. This site shows local recyclers willing to buy scrap materials. These local businesses will then sell your boxes to a paper mill, making new cardboard out of your used ones.
How can you find buyers using Recycler Finder?
- Go to the Recycler Finder website.
- Input your zip code or postal code.
- Select from five radiuses: 5, 10, 15, 25, and 50.
- Choose “Cardboard & Paper Products” in the material category.
- Tap the “Recycle” button.
- On the next page, you’ll see the available facilities, their distance, and a QR code.
- Scan the code to know the contact details of each local recycler.
- After finding a nearby local recycler, communicate through phone, email, or social media accounts.
- Discuss rates and when you will deliver the cardboard boxes.
7. U-Haul Box Exchange: For Moving Boxes
U-Haul Box Exchange focuses on connecting its customers looking for or selling boxes and moving supplies. The website generally caters to college students and families who are planning to move.
Here’s how you can list your used cardboard boxes for free
- Go to the U-Haul Exchange website.
- Click “Create a post” on the top part of the page.
- On the next page, provide your post’s title.
- Aside from the title, select “I have moving supplies to share” under the post type query.
- Input your email address, city, state, and zip code.
- Describe the product, including its condition and size. Remember to indicate your preferred price.
- Tap the “Create Post” button, then wait for an email from U-Haul to validate your email address and activate your listing.
- Once someone wants to buy your used boxes, finalize the rate, then arrange a preferred time and date for delivery.
8. UsedCardboardBoxes: For Shipping Boxes and Gaylord Totes
Since 2006, UsedCardboardBoxes has been buying and selling used boxes and Gaylord totes. Here are the commonly accepted scrap materials from the website.
- Shipping boxes
- Produce bins
- Barrels and drums
So how can you sell your old boxes to this website?
- Go to UsedCardboardBoxes website.
- Click the “Wholesale” tab on the top of the homepage.
- Navigate through the page until you see “Buy Gaylord Totes” and “Buy Shipping Boxes.”
- Select between the two, depending on the items you want to sell.
- Below are the details you need to provide:
- Full name
- Street address
- Phone number
- Email address
- Length, width, and depth of your box
- Select if you’re a recurring or one-time seller
- Comments, if any
- Click Submit and wait for a UsedCardboardBoxes representative to contact you.
9. Local Recycling Centers: For Direct Selling of Boxes
If you want the good old way to sell old cardboard boxes, then ask around or search “local recycling centers near me.”
Visit the centers and choose which of them offers the highest price.
Where Can You Find Cardboard Boxes?
Did you know you can find free boxes then sell them to the online sites listed above? Aside from your home, look through these websites and places if you don’t have a lot of cardboard but want to earn more.
Friends and family members
One of the easiest ways to have free boxes is to ask friends and family members. You can post on your social media accounts to let your friends know that you’re looking for used boxes. You can also visit or call them for extra boxes.
Grocery and retail stores
You can ask these establishments for free boxes if you live near groceries, retail stores, and even liquor stores. Surely, they have numerous cartons since they receive bulk deliveries every day. You can find almost all kinds of boxes from these stores.
What stores can you ask for used boxes?
Restaurants also receive daily shipments, so it’s highly possible that you can ask them for used cardboard. If you can, choose boxes used to store dry goods instead of those that used to contain wet ingredients. This way, you can avoid smelly or dirty cartons.
Factories collect raw materials contained in large shipping boxes. You can contact nearby factories to ask for used cardboard. Since most factories' boxes are the same size, it will be easier for you to list them on websites.
Here’s a tip: Inquire about free Gaylord totes in local factories to earn more.
With more than 9 million members worldwide, you can use Freecycle to find free cardboard and other unwanted items.
So how can you use Freecycle?
- Go to the Freecycle website.
- Type related keywords, like “cardboard” or “moving boxes,” on the search bar in the middle of the page.
- Click the magnifying glass icon.
- Select from the cardboard boxes shown on the next page.
Nextdoor offers a social media platform where neighbors can buy, sell, and even find free items.
Here’s how you can find free boxes using Nextdoor.
- Download the Nextdoor app.
- Sign up by providing your email address and password.
- Navigate through the app and visit the Nextdoor Finds section.
- Choose among the listings of used cardboard offered by your neighbors.
What are the Benefits of Recycling Cardboard?
According to the University of Southern India, Americans use almost 85,000,000 tons of paper each year. This includes newspapers, office paper, and even cardboard. Recycling used boxes can help minimize this drastic effect on the environment.
Also, you can earn extra income while saving the environment. It even helps to declutter your space and make room for more important household items.
Is it Easy to Sell Recycled Cardboards?
There are various websites and places where you can sell used cardboard. Try visiting BoxCycle, Boxsmart, Craigslist, Duffy Box, Padnos, Recycler Finder, U-Haul Box Exchange, UsedCardboardBoxes, and even your local recycling centers.
You can also find cardboard by reaching out to family and friends or contacting retail stores, restaurants, and local factories. After collecting used boxes, list them on the websites above for extra cash!