Packing Paper for Moving

Using packing paper to protect your belongings

When you read our how-to packing guides, you’ll see that packing paper is often recommended as a great way to protect your belongings during a move. In some cases, it may be the best way. Take a look at what makes it an ideal supply to have on hand for wrapping and protecting many of your items. Then find out how to use it, how much to order, and get some great ideas for what you can do with it after your move. 

packing paper


What is packing paper?

It’s single-ply, professional grade, unprinted paper. You can use it to wrap items, add support to fragile pieces, and fill empty spaces in boxes. People find it to be a great value since it comes in large bundles and can be used for several things. And the best part? It’s recyclable!

Should I get packing paper, Bubble Wrap® or newspaper?

Bubble Wrap is good for protecting very delicate items and electronics. But for things that don’t require that level of protection, packing paper is all you need. It’s protective, it’s precut into convenient sheets, and it takes up less space, so you can fill the box with more items (not just packing materials). Packing paper is also considered more environmentally friendly since it’s easily recyclable. .

When it comes to packing paper vs. newspaper, packing paper wins every time. It doesn’t transfer ink onto your hands or your belongings — who wants to deal with cleaning ink off dishes on move-in day? Newsprint also crumples tighter than packing paper, so unlike packing paper, it may not provide the support you need to keep things safe inside the moving box.

How to use packing paper for your move

While there are countless ways to use packing paper, it’s primarily used to wrap items and fill empty space.

Wrap breakable items, like cups, figurines or vases. Packing paper holds its shape once it’s folded, but if you want to keep things tightly bound, add some tape to secure it.

Fold paper around flat items. Wrap things like picture frames or books like you would a present, then stack them in a box.

Fill spaces in boxes, so items don't shift during transit. Place a few sheets in the bottom of a box for padding and then place them between wrapped pieces as buffers.

Use it to separate similar items. If you’re packing items that can be stacked, place a sheet between each item, and then wrap the entire bundle. For example, place a sheet between plates before wrapping them together.  

Insert crumpled paper inside items. This helps things like shoes and purses hold their shape and gives fragile pieces like cups and vases more support.

How much paper do you need?

Packing paper is typically sold by weight, and for most bundles, it's around 20 sheets per pound. But how much do you need? That depends on the size of your home and the number of small items you need to pack. Here are some general guidelines:

·       10 pounds: approximately 200 sheets, ideal for a studio apartment or one-bedroom home
·       25 pounds: about 500 sheets, great for multiple room home or a dish collection
·       50 pounds: around 1,000 sheets, perfect for larger homes or many fragile items
·       100 pounds: roughly 2,000 sheets, great for 6+ bedrooms or multiple collections

You can order packages of packing paper or get it bundled with other moving supplies at the U-Pack Box Store. Every order ships free right to your door!

What do I do with packing paper after my move?

Once you get unpacked, there are several creative ways to reuse your packing paper. Have dirty windows? Use your left over packing paper instead of paper towels. It won’t leave lint behind. Planning on doing some landscaping? Use it in the garden as a weed barrier — just lay a single layer down before the final layer of soil. You can also use it to stuff things like boots, hats and purses while they’re stored in your closet, to help hold their shape.

If there’s paper left over that you can’t repurpose, consider recycling! Simply check with your recycling center about their requirements (e.g. you may need a special bin for bulk paper).

Don’t pack without it

It’s important for your stuff to arrive at your destination safely, and proper packing is the key. In most cases, this is achieved by using packing paper to wrap items and stuff boxes. So be sure to add some to your cart in the U-Pack Box Store! If you need help figuring out how much to order, our moving consultants are happy to help. Give us a call or ask in the comments below!