Seriously, Amazon… Why Such BIG Boxes?!

Hip2Save may earn a small commission via affiliate links in this post. Read our full disclosure policy here.

NOTE FROM COLLIN:

Similar to how we do our Try Me Tuesday posts with product recommendations, I thought it would be also fun to do basically the complete opposite. With that said, I introduce “Waste of Money Wednesday!” 😂 This post will be exactly that – the Hip2Save team will be sharing products that they aren’t happy with, products they feel are a waste of money – basically product UN-recommendations.

Hey There! It’s Sydney – one of Collin’s sidekicks!

If you’re anything like me, then you love ordering things from Amazon! The convenience of being able to get just about ANYTHING in two days is awesome! The only problem with that is I tend to order a lot of stuff that I might not “need” – or that my husband doesn’t think I need. 😬

I often hope my Amazon packages get delivered when he’s not home so I can get rid of the evidence of the treasures I found! But the other day we came home to this huge box from Amazon on our porch. Immediately I got the look; come on ladies you know the look I’m talking about. That look of ‘We already have enough stuff, where in the world are we going to put this?!’

But this time I was just as surprised as he was! All I had remembered ordering from Amazon was some muffin tins – and surely this box couldn’t JUST be muffin tins. I was fooled, though… THIS entire 4 foot box was filled with ONE MUFFIN TIN! YES, really.

Seriously, Amazon?! Those poor trees. 😢 Now I feel bad and wish I would have just spent the extra time and money, and headed to the store to buy this. Not only the trees, but how much money did Amazon waste shipping this HUGE box to me in 2 days?!

Have you ever ordered something from Amazon and had it delivered in a box that was WAY too big (or maybe even too small)?

Let us know in the comments!

Other Waste of Money posts:
Join The Discussion

Comments 140

  1. Queenjen87

    You can leave packaging feedback for Amazon on the order page. I usual do when I get something like this. Or more recently crackers shipped in the same box as dog food without a divider on my subscribe and save order 😂

  2. Becky

    I feel the same way!!!!!

    • Jess

      We love the oversized boxes! We have little ones in our house, so the giant boxes get turned into airplanes, boats, castles, you name it!

      • Alla

        We do the same. Kids houses, cars…and just reusing them. I love those boxes.

  3. Vee

    This happens alllllll the time. It’s ridiculous.

  4. Gerri

    I have to agree. I ordered and just yesterday received a huge box for one griddle. So much paper was packed in the box too.

  5. Debbie W

    Yes! Also – they *never* use any packing material. Yesterday they shipped a 12 pack of drinks & a 6 pound bag of dog food with a bag of pretzels in a box so big I could fit in. Needless to say, the pretzels were breadcrumbs upon arrival. I have left feedback & called multiple times and it happens again and again. Love Amazon but packing is definitely a spot for improvement.

    • Matt

      I’ve had them send fragile things without paper or wrap, and then something like a hardback book with enough paper to fill a lawn trash bag. It seems different warehouses do things differently!

  6. Amber

    The better for you to pack in , my dear!

  7. Kalee

    One time I ordered a teeth whitening kit and they sent a huge box with nothing inside. Even if the kit were inside it still would have been over kill!

  8. KMHL

    Sorry about that Sydney! I guess you are right…if you don’t want to waste trees, then please take the time to go buy it from a store.
    But, if your item arrived in a box too small and damaged, you’d be complaining also.
    I appreciate that Amazon spends a little more to secure the item I bought. I do make sure I recycle the boxes or in my community people are always needing boxes for something so, I store them and once I get enough of them, I offer them on my community webpage.
    Just a thought for you to consider.
    I think the actual underlying guilt here, is the fact that we, including myself, are guilty of buying way too much from Amazon and enjoying the convenience it brings us 🙂

    • Karin

      although folks would complain if an item arrived damaged, the reality is, they don’t pay attention to packaging. I was shipped cording, 3 yards of cording, in a 12×12 box that could have fit 20 packages of cording. It was absurd. Just like at a grocery store, the clerk filling an order should be able to determine the risk of damage and chose a box accordingly. Muffin tins could have been shipped in a box 1/2 that size (at most) with padding if they were concerned.

    • Lindsay Reaves

      Seriously?!

    • Jade

      wow that was rude haha

    • L.G.

      I was thinking the same thing. Just recycle it. Collect boxes and put them on Craigslist for people that are moving to come pick up. Call the food bank and ask if they need boxes. Talk about first world problems.

    • Mourrene

      Well, my stuff has arrived in a big poorly box and still been damaged. Regardless of my reasons for purchasing, I want it in good shape when it arrives. And, I want packaging that makes sense. A huge box for a small item is ridiculous just as a small overpacked box with little padding is. I’ve had numerous problems with amazon packaging this year despite leaving repeated feedback. They’ve had to replace several items—including g because they put non-wrapped laundry detergent in with other items. And guess what? Everything had laundry detergent on it. My frustration with amazon this year has resulted in fewer purchases from me.

  9. Lila

    This happens more and more as the holiday season ramps up, and not just for Amazon. If it takes too long for the warehouse workers to find a box of the right size, any box bigger than the item will do in a pinch. You may be buying on the internet, but the people boxing your purchases, are that, just people.

    • Erin

      Why is that rude? Americans in general do buy too much–certainly more than they strictly need. I would not be surprised at all to hear that most of the people on this site are shopping addicts.

      • Laurie

        I agree. We don’t NEED it until HIP2SAVE offers a deal – then we think – oh I could use that. When in reality we don’t need it

  10. Jennifer

    My thought exactly!

  11. Pam

    At least they use the air pockets when they ship. Kmart/Sears still send their boxes full of packing peanuts. Those are the days that I hope my package is delivered before the kids get home and see those awful (but oh so fun) pieces of foam.

  12. Mickey

    Sometimes they run out of exact size boxes. Then in order to not delay shipping and hold up logistics they ship out with what they can find .. even though it comes at higher shipping cost. In your case I bet the actual bill of shipping to deliver is greater than cost of the tins.

    • Sarah

      Good to know an explanation why this happens!

  13. Laura

    I always wonder the same thing!!!

  14. Mandy

    Those big boxes are very unnecessary. I’ve experienced the same. Seeing that it’s the beginning of the holiday shopping season, amazon should know these oversized boxes are noticeable to thieves. I like my current delivery UPS/FED EX drivers because they know me very well and discretely place my packages when I’m not home. But after they start hiring seasonal workers, packages become more vulnerable because they start mishandling and throwing packages at your doorstep..smh.As Colin and her team continues to provide those deals to stock up for gifts, I pray everyone is able to receive their packages and not be victims due to these oversized packages.

  15. Amy

    I once got a single bottle of nail polish in a box that was about the size of a very large boot shoebox. It made me laugh. Their packages are either like that or like some sort of evil tetris genius packed them. Also, I live in Ohio. My packages either start it Kentucky, go through Ohio, to Michigan and back down to Ohio or the opposite. MI >KY> then back to Ohio and it makes me crazy! What a waste of time and fuel! Also, we have facilities in Ohio so why do they never ship from Ohio? ? Ok, rant over haha but their shipping makes me scratch my head like what the heck.

    • Monica

      The items you order are probably not in stock in Ohio. And when you place an order for say 2 items, and one is in MI and one in KY, it is likely more efficient and inexpensive for them to throw that KY item on the truck already headed to MI, so they can put them in one box together, rather than shipping them separate.

      • Amy

        I guess that makes sense but it seems so strange to me that it is every single package I get. I’ll have to pay attention to the single item packages to see if it still happens.

  16. Ellen

    I’m so glad I’m not the only one I literally ordered a little witch broom that came in a giant and I mean giant box that said it weighed 3 pounds it may be weighed half a pound at most it was the box they were paying for you can only imagine how much they actually pay for shipping it was way more than I paid for the like two dollar broom lol 😂

    This also happens to me when I do subscribe and save they will throw diapers in with iitems orgiant hheavy cans of stuff in with smaller stuff and it ends up getting smashed

  17. sarah sloan

    I ordered a large bag of halloween candy from Amazon. I understood and appreciated the 2 ice packs to keep the chocolate cool but they wrapped it in 2 thick pads of fibers. The 2 pads range about 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick and smaller pad is about 8 “W by 16” L. I am repurposing them as a bench pillow.

    • Amy

      Lucky! Most of the time I’ve ordered anything chocolate they had melted at some point. I’ve never had anything come with ice packs

  18. Ann

    ALL.THE.TIME.

  19. Alyse

    I went on a tour of an Amazon distribution center last month and asked about how they chose box sizes, they said the computer tells them what size to grab based on the dimensions! LOL!

    • Clippy

      That explains a lot!! LOL

  20. Leslie Ramey

    Oh my gosh, that’s so funny but sad. They need to do little better in the shipping dept.

  21. Monicke Baker

    I’ve only had Amazon deliver my items once in a too big box. I never had an issues with the boxes being too big besides that once. Plus I always leave packaging feedback. I order several items within a month.

  22. Anjie

    Amazon uses less packaging types. They only have certain sizes on hand, to reduce waste. If amazon had every size box out there, there would be more fuels used to make them, and more waste when boxes go bad sitting there they get damaged many ways (I’m a medic at an on-site store) it’s so funny how people think one way

    • Clippy

      I doubt it. For a small business, that might make more sense. But with the volume Amazon sells, they should be able to stock plenty of sizes at lower cost and use of resources.
      I think the problem is in trying to streamline the efficiency of the process as someone posted above, by using computers to determine the size, losing the human element of reason.

    • Andrea

      They surely have one that is a more appropriate size though 😉

  23. Stacey

    It seems this past year especially quality control has decreased to nonexistent. Between the boxes being the wrong size, or no packing with extremely fragile items arriving in shards, wrong items, and the list goes on and on! Now I love the convenience and pricing most of the time but I seem to be having to call at least now several times a week with issues from them.

  24. Smith0126

    I have seriously always felt the same way. It’s such a waste. But we do you save some to wrap Christmas presents and we also use someone we do our projects to protect our table.

  25. Julie

    Amazon really need to work on packing. I really hate when I get stuff in bubble mailers. I always know there is sometime of damage when I get the bubble mailers.

  26. Kimberly

    I ordered Lysol wipes with subscribe and save and they used a huge box with no packing inside. So the wipes totally leaked all over and Amazon made me send them back in order to get replacements. The Lysol labels were actually peeling off they were so wet. So for sure it cost them more to pay for me to ship them back so they could throw it out. So dumb!

    • Julie Steiner

      I had the same issue with Lysol wipes last month, but I just kept them.

  27. Heather

    Kohls is also really bad about sending huge boxes with medium to small sized items. They do use plenty of those air-pouch fillers though. I am very rural, and have no trash service, so dealing with these large packages is a pain. I let my kids make forts with them or sometimes reuse them to mail something.

  28. Ashley C

    I once got a three foot square box, yes huge for one. Yankee Candle. tart. Yes an item that fits in the palm of my hand sent in a box that I could hide both of my toddlers in. Crazy.

  29. Clippy

    This post inspired me to dig up something that came across my radar last christmas:
    GiveBackBox.com
    Fill your Amazon box with items for donation and print a label to ship it to Goodwill! There are other partners as well on with more info on the site.

    • Carol

      What a positive helpful idea. Thanks for sharing that thought and for providing the link.

  30. Debra

    I actually stopped ordering from Amazon when I saw how much packaging came with my orders. I felt too guilty.

  31. Kylie Jay

    Always always always. The husband looks and I am 100000% sure my mail man hates me.

    • Kylie Jay

      And & recycle & garbage man too 😂

    • Tori

      I asked my mailman how he felt & he said he loved it because it was people like us that keeps him in a job. So order away (his words).

  32. Susan

    I do the same! I hope any package is delivered when my husband is at work so I don’t have to answer questions. When I come home from shopping and I have that extra something, I will leave it in my vehicle under a blanket until he’s not around. Sometimes I’ll bring stuff in the house and hide it in the dryer.

    • Nat

      Lol!! You just made my day!

    • Libby

      Lol!!!! I never thought of the dryer! No way he would look there!

  33. Marilyn55

    All the time ! One time it will be shampoo in box big enough for a child to play in and filled with packing materials… next time something potentially breakable with no padding … but they do have excellent customer service if anything gets damaged 👍BTW WALMART is even worse for the excess packing and boxes …

  34. Pharmchick

    I agree! And now on the flip side, I dislike how Kohls sends things in plastic mailers when they offer free shipping! Sometimes if it’s clothes or something it’s ok, but I dislike them sending shoeboxesnand such in the plastic mailers, because the box is completely broken and the item itself looks a little worn being beat up in transit.

  35. JES

    I ordered a garden flag, the small ones without a stand. It came in a 3′ by 2′ box. Something that could have been put in a padded envelope was in an excessively large box.

  36. Jessie

    I’ve thought about this before. Amazon is a “machine” in which every second…minute counts. Waste time money electricity resources to find the correct box and crash the assemble line process or push whats available at the time and move to the next product to send out and hope customers recycle

  37. Joy

    I refuse to buy from amazon. I prefer ebay I always price check and ebay has been lower every time. I’ve never had an issue in over 5 years… and I’ve never had a package show up that didn’t have adequate packing material or was over boxed. I love ebay!

  38. Shelby

    You’d have to actually run the whole carbon number thing but it’s debatable if driving in your car to the store really is any better than receiving a package. If you’re worried about trees just look behind a target or any other store. Everything they get to sell is also trucked in, packaged in cardboard boxes.

  39. Holly

    I had a similar experience about six weeks ago that made me so mad I tried to leave packaging feedback, but for some reason the system kept glitching and I couldn’t.

    To be fair on this one, though I ordered the item via Amazon, it was fulfilled and shipped by Office Depot. And apparently they’re also notorious for wasteful shipping.

    I ordered a soft-sided pencil case. We’re talking 4 inches by 6 inches and SOFT, so it wouldn’t have been damaged being shipped in a bubble mailer.

    It arrived in a box that was so big *I COULD SIT IN IT.* I took a picture of myself sitting in the box while holding the pencil case!

    http://tinyurl.com/yc75fsxc

    Not only that, but it was accompanied by … FORTY FEET of bubble packs. I measured. One continuous loop.

    The worst part of all of that is that this whole mess was shipped via UPS, rather than by USPS. Shipping was free for me, but somewhere down the line it cost someone an extra $3-5 beyond what it would have cost to send this via first class mail.

  40. Erin

    I bought giant muffin tins like that at Target yesterday! They were on clearance for $4.50. They are heavy duty!

  41. Kate

    I worked at a shipping store for more years then I care to admit, there is no reason they cannot cut a box to size the object, I did it all day every day, just takes a little object perception, a box cutter and really not much skill.

  42. patricia

    I work at UPS and we always get a good laugh about this 🙂 see it every day

  43. Misty

    I don’t understand why Amazon does this all the time…when people deliver mail… They deliver those packages in there own personal vehicle they are many times the vehicle is so full of big boxes there just isn’t any room left…

  44. Cheryl

    Totally agree with the size…but my pet peeve is how filthy the outside of the boxes have become. I think this is probably a carrier issue. But unboxing purchases takes a while lot of effort trying to keep counter/table/items clean.

  45. C

    The subscribe and save is the worst. They cram very heavy things in with light things and shampoo. Everything gets ruined and then they have to ship again. I always tell them the packaging was poor and it doesn’t change.

    • JES

      I agree, every month my tampons get smashed by the other items in the box.

    • Mourrene

      I agree! I hate how they cram stuff into the box and stuff gets squished. I’m ordering less and less from them even with s&s. It’s too aggravating to call and complain. I will probably ditch prime after Christmas.

  46. tcmatth1

    I used to work at an Amazon Distribution Center and it does tell you which boxes to use for every order. It even has a tape dispenser that calculates and shots out the correct size tape for each box. So the size calculation for the item could be incorrect in the system. You can override it but working with timing and minimums the extra work of doing that can slow your “numbers” down. Most of the time it is the correct sized box. So a combination of human and computer error.

  47. Rae

    How about the times when there weren’t enough boxes or packing? I had ordered a 5lb bag of almond flour (most expensive item I orderd), a 1lb bag of tapioca starch, a 6qt lodge cast iron Dutch oven, 10.25″ lodge cast iron skillet, and a cast iron griddle. They sent it ALL in one box with no packing. By the time I got it, the box looked like it had been run over by the ups truck that had delivered it. There was a trail of gritty white powder leaking from the box with poofs of white powder wafting from the box with every move. Thankfully the cookware was not even chipped but the flours had to be relaced. Understanding that the box was packed by a person who likely didn’t have malicious intent I let it go. Those poor UPS workers that had to jostle that heavy shifting mess making box are the ones I feel bad for.

  48. ANISHA BARBER

    One word (OVERWORKED) they have to pack 250 items per hour. My husband works there. I am sure they are just grabbing and packing. If numbers are down they are reprimanded.

    • Wehaf

      Yes, amazon factory workers are overworked and underpaid. They are held to very strict speed standards to keep costs down.

    • Mourrene

      Thanks for sharing that. I had no idea.

    • Clippy

      Yes to this. The fewer workers, the faster they have to move. If they would increase the work force, they would be able to pack items into reasonable boxes. It makes sense that it all comes down to the bottom dollar.

    • Angie

      Yes, was going to say the same thing. My ex worked at the Amazon warehouse and it was terrible. So much demands and little pay. He made me promise I wouldn’t buy from them lol.

  49. Denise

    I just shipped a very small box from USPS the other day priority mail that cost me twenty bucks to ship ( it was only 3 pounds) I was amazed at how expensive I cannot even image how much amazon pays for shipping larger boxes

  50. sarah

    I’ve had too big boxes frequently, so after my cats get full use of them, I recycle them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

It's not your Grandma's coupon site!

Sign up for a Hip2Save account (it's free) to access all of the awesome features!

Forgot Password?

Don't have an account? Register

Forgot Password

Don't have an account? Register

Become a Hip2Save Insider

Don't Miss Out! Join our large community of insiders - it's totally free! Once you join, you'll be able to save & share your favorite deals, rate posts and recipes and add items to your HipList and Cookbook! What are ya waiting for?!

Already have an account? Login

Become a Hip2Save Insider

Don't Miss Out! Join our large community of insiders - it's totally free! Once you join, you'll be able to save & share your favorite deals, rate posts and recipes and add items to your HipList and Cookbook! What are ya waiting for?!



Already have an account? Login

Thank you for rating!

Would you also like to leave us a comment?