March 14, 2017 Fabiha

How many boxes do I need for my move?

Caucasian woman unpacking boxes in new home

“Rick” was our 9:00 AM move one day a few years back. He had a fairly spartan one-bedroom apartment so he figured he’d need about 10 boxes and he’d be good. How he came to that figure was fairly memorable:

“I sort of put my apartment in a frame like this,” and he made a rectangle with his two thumbs and index fingers like he was framing a shot for a movie scene,” and put everything in it.

Needless to say, he was off by about 20 boxes. There’s a better way.


One better way is the Packing Calculator from I’ve played with it a few times and it more or less corresponds to what we see on the ground. For example:

One Bedroom Apartment (One Resident)
Large boxes: 16
Medium boxes: 20
Wardrobe boxes: 2

Slightly bigger place?

Two Bedroom Apartment (Two Residents)
Large boxes: 26
Medium boxes: 30
Wardrobe boxes: 4

I say it “more or less” corresponds because these numbers might be a little high. Take five or so boxes from the “large” category and that’s a good average.

The Packing Calculator also gives some recommendations for other necessities like paper, tape, markers, etc. It’s easy to go overboard, but the important thing to remember is to be as organized as possible. Whether you pack yourself or have someone else do it, good organization is key to a fast, efficient move. It could very well save you a ton of money.

Check out our Moving Guide for more info about the whole moving process. 

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