What Is the Best Way to Ship a Small Piece of Furniture?

Rochdi Rais Rochdi Rais · Updated May 31, 2023

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When it comes to shipping a small piece of furniture, whether it’s a delicate antique chair or a compact side table, choosing the right shipping method is crucial to ensure its safe and timely arrival. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the best practices and methods before you move one piece of furniture, providing you with the knowledge and confidence to navigate the shipping process successfully.

Assessing the Furniture and Packaging Materials

Before shipping your small furniture piece, assessing its condition and gathering the appropriate packaging materials is essential. Here’s what you need to consider:

  1. Furniture Assessment:
    • Examine the furniture for any existing damage or vulnerabilities that might affect its shipping.
    • Take detailed measurements and note any fragile components that require special attention.
  2. Packaging Materials:
    • Choose sturdy and appropriate packaging materials, such as cardboard boxes, bubble wrap, packing peanuts, and packing tape.
    • Consider using furniture blankets or foam padding to provide extra protection.

Disassembling and Properly Wrapping the Furniture

To ensure the safety and protection of your small furniture piece during transit, follow these steps for disassembling and wrapping:

  1. Disassembling:
    • If possible, disassemble the furniture into smaller components to reduce the risk of damage.
    • Keep track of all hardware and store it securely for reassembly later.
  2. Wrapping Techniques:
    • Start by wrapping the individual components with bubble wrap or foam padding to safeguard against scratches and impacts.
    • Secure the wrapping material with packing tape, ensuring it remains intact during handling and transit.

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Choosing the Right Shipping Method

Selecting the appropriate shipping method is crucial for successfully delivering your small furniture item. Consider the following options:

  1. Postal Services:
    • For smaller, lightweight furniture pieces, consider shipping through postal services like USPS, FedEx, or UPS.
    • Choose the appropriate service based on the item’s size, weight, and fragility.
  2. Freight Shipping:
    • For larger and heavier furniture pieces, freight shipping services are ideal.
    • Request quotes from reputable freight carriers and compare their pricing, delivery options, and insurance coverage.

Properly Packaging and Labeling the Shipment

To ensure a smooth shipping process and accurate delivery, it’s essential to correctly package and label the shipment. Follow these guidelines:

  1. Secure Packaging:
    • Place the wrapped furniture components inside a sturdy cardboard box.
    • Fill any remaining gaps with packing peanuts or bubble wrap to prevent movement during transit.
  2. Clear Labeling:
    • Clearly label the package with the recipient’s name, address, and contact information.
    • Indicate “Fragile” or “Handle with Care” labels on the box to alert handlers.

Tracking and Insurance

Tracking your shipment and obtaining insurance coverage provide peace of mind throughout shipping. Consider the following:

  1. Tracking Services:
    • Opt for shipping services that offer tracking capabilities, allowing you to monitor the progress of your shipment online.
  2. Insurance Coverage:
    • Assess the value of your small furniture piece and consider purchasing additional insurance coverage to protect against loss or damage.

Securing Insurance for Added Protection

When shipping a small piece of furniture, it’s important to consider insurance options for added protection against unforeseen events. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Understanding Insurance Coverage:
    • Research and understand the insurance options provided by the shipping carrier or third-party insurance providers.
    • Determine the coverage limits and any exclusions that may apply to your small furniture item.
  2. Declaring the Value:
    • Accurately declare the value of your furniture piece when purchasing insurance.
    • Provide any necessary documentation, such as receipts or appraisals, to support the declared value.
  3. Comparing Insurance Costs:
    • Obtain quotes from different insurance providers to compare coverage and costs.
    • Consider the overall value of the furniture piece and the associated shipping risks when selecting insurance.

Arranging Pick-up and Delivery Services

Coordinating the pick-up and delivery of your small furniture piece is a crucial step in shipping. Follow these guidelines for a smooth and efficient experience:

  1. Scheduling the Pick-Up:
    • Contact the shipping carrier or freight company to schedule the pick-up of your packaged furniture.
    • Provide accurate details, including the pick-up location, preferred date, and any special instructions.
  2. Communicating Delivery Requirements:
    • Inform the recipient of the scheduled delivery and provide any specific delivery instructions or restrictions.
    • Ensure the recipient is available to receive the package during the designated delivery window.
  3. Tracking the Shipment:
    • Utilize the tracking services offered by the shipping carrier to monitor the progress of your shipment.
    • Stay informed about any updates or potential delays to ensure a smooth delivery process.
  4. Confirming Receipt and Inspection:
    • Once the shipment has been delivered, instruct the recipient to inspect the furniture piece for any damage or discrepancies.
    • If any issues are identified, document them immediately and notify the shipping carrier to initiate the necessary claims process.

Following these additional steps, you can ensure a seamless shipping experience for your small furniture item, from securing insurance coverage to arranging pick-up and delivery services. Taking the time to address these aspects will provide you with peace of mind and protect your furniture throughout the shipping journey.

Choosing the Right Packaging Materials and Methods

Proper packaging is essential when shipping a small piece of furniture to ensure its safety during transit. Consider the following factors when selecting packaging materials and methods:

  1. Selecting Sturdy Packaging Materials:
    • Use high-quality cardboard boxes that are appropriate in size for your furniture piece.
    • Consider reinforced boxes or those specifically designed for shipping furniture.
    • Utilize bubble wrap, foam padding, or packing peanuts to provide cushioning and protection.
  2. Disassembling the Furniture:
    • If possible, disassemble the furniture into smaller components to make it easier to package and transport.
    • Keep track of all hardware and screws by securely labeling and storing them in a separate container.
  3. Wrapping and Securing:
    • Wrap delicate or vulnerable parts of the furniture, such as legs or corners, with bubble wrap or foam padding.
    • Use furniture blankets or moving blankets to cover and protect the larger surfaces.
    • Secure the blankets with packing tape or straps to prevent shifting during transit.
  4. Reinforcing the Packaging:
    • Strengthen the packaging by adding additional layers of cardboard or plywood to the top, bottom, and sides of the box.
    • Use corner protectors or edge guards to prevent any damage to the furniture during handling.
  5. Labeling and Marking:
    • Clearly label the package with the recipient’s address, contact information, and any special handling instructions.
    • Indicate that the contents are fragile or require careful handling to ensure proper treatment during transit.


Shipping a small piece of furniture can be a smooth and stress-free experience when following the best practices outlined in this guide. From assessing the furniture and selecting appropriate packaging materials to choosing the right shipping method and tracking the shipment, each step is vital in ensuring the safe and timely arrival of your cherished furniture piece. By employing these expert techniques, you can ship your small furniture item with confidence, knowing it will reach its destination in excellent condition.