We wrote an article back in 2012 with some suggestions for the type of places where you can pick up five gallon buckets for free. The general advice given there still applies, but it’s useful perhaps if we give you a list of stores where people have had success picking up five gallon buckets for free.
We definitely recommend getting buckets for free. You’re not just doing yourself a favor, these buckets you get for free would probably end up in a landfill somewhere, where they slowly decay. Nobody wants plastic to get into our environment!
To save you some work, we compiled a list of stores that hand out their buckets for free. We also have a list of stores that don’t hand them out. Some stores recycle their buckets, other send them back to the manufacturers, others might have their own reasons.
Stores that hand out free buckets
People have had success picking up five gallon buckets for free at the following stores:
- Dunkin Donuts
- Tim Hortons
- Sam’s Club
- The bakery at Kroger
- The bakery at Walmart
- The bakery at Meijer
Stores that generally don’t hand out free buckets
Some places where people did not have success picking up five gallon buckets are:
- Cosco – Apparently they return them to the manufacturer.
- Walmart – Walmart tends not to be cooperative when you call them, but they do have buckets available if you visit the bakery.
- McDonalds – They said they don’t give them out.
- Golden Corral – Apparently don’t get any 5 gallon buckets.
- SubWay – Don’t get their pickles in buckets.
This list is not complete. Hopefully some of you who managed to get their five gallon buckets for free can share your experiences in the comments below, so that we can add to it.
If all else fails
We really recommend trying to get your bucket for free, but if the above stores don’t get you anywhere, you can simply order buckets over at Amazon for a reasonable price too.