Moving Tips

Reduce, reuse, recycle – sustainability in the international removals industry

Making your international relocation can be daunting – and for many it only really hits home when they start to pack their things. Seeing all your belongings packed away into boxes and cartons can be both humbling and exciting! It’s also at this point that many people realise just how much packaging material is required to pack your belongings. There is always concern about the level of waste created by making your international removal, but luckily many of the materials used to pack your belongings are recyclable or reusable. We take a closer look at why using so many boxes isn’t such a bad thing, and how your relocation can be more sustainable. 

Eco-friendly moving

In international removals, there are a lot of materials used in every move. Luckily, with more and more companies becoming environmentally aware, there are more eco-friendly packaging materials used every year. Packing your belongings requires boxes and cartons of all shapes and sizes, as well as other packing material such as padding and tape. John Mason provides a variety of different sized boxes for your eco-friendly move, from small cartons for miscellaneous belongings to wardrobe sized boxes for your clothes. They also have their own award-winning packing service, meaning that if you don’t want the hassle of boxing up your stuff, they can do it for you with ease and care.

Many of the boxes used in international removals are cardboard, which is widely recycled around the world. At John Mason, there are regular cardboard collections to make sure that everything that can be recycled is. This way, it’s possible to make your move more sustainable. Remembering the three Rs can help to keep your move as eco-friendly as possible. 


You can reduce the number of things you have to pack and move by using your relocation as an opportunity for a clear-out of your personal possessions. Holding a garage sale or using a car boot sale can help you shift some of your unwanted, unused, and unloved possessions. After all, there’s no point moving stuff halfway around the world to just get rid of it once it’s unpacked!


Reusing old boxes can be a good way of reducing your carbon footprint during your move. Lighter items can be packed in older boxes as they’re less likely to rupture the container. When packing heavier things, it’s always a good idea to use fresh boxes. It’s also worth noting that many boxes that have been used to contain food products will likely be help up upon inspection in your destination country. Reusing can also mean that you use your boxes after you move, in your new home, or donate them to someone else you know will need them!

Boots being reused as planting space.


As mentioned, there are always new and innovative packaging materials being used. For example, packing peanuts which used to be oil based and made of plastic are now available in recyclable materials. Swapping out your parcel tape for paper gum tape, which is also recyclable, can help to make a difference in your packing setup. Bubble wrap can now be replaced with a paper equivalent which works just as well at protecting your belongings. See if you can pack all your things with recyclable materials – it’s definitely possible now!

A recycling bin, for being sustainable.

Moving you and your belongings around the world in an eco-friendly way is becoming more and more possible as time goes on. New materials are released for packing with lower carbon footprints, electric vehicles are used more often for transport, and some of the cities you may be planning to move to might be making effort to be sustainable too. At John Mason, we help you to get where you need to go, and make you the centre of our world as we do it. For your eco-friendly move, contact us today to see how we can help you.  

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As one of the leading providers of overseas removals and relocation services on a national and international scale, we pride ourselves on offering a professional and friendly service. We have been recognised as one of the leading international moving companies and are proud of our credentials and the quality standard they represent. In 2023, we became the most trusted moving company in the UK.

Some of our Customer Reviews

The packers were careful, quick and courteous. I highly recommend this company and would definitely use them again! Efficient, polite, punctual: could not ask for more.

Hertfordshire, UK to Virginia, USA - March 2023

From start with Michelle to finish with Gill the level of service was excellent. John Mason and its international partners handled my move from Devon to Australia seemingly effortlessly. I couldn't ask for better.

Devon, UK to Perth, Australia –April 2023

Absolutely one of the best movers I have worked with. Pleasant helpful admin staff and the delivery drivers were absolute angels sorting and moving the boxes where I asked them to. Arrived exactly when they said it would.

Yorkshire, UK to Sydney, Australia - March 2023

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