There are many packaging options available in the market when it comes to providing protective packaging for products. Several factors have to be considered during the decision process, such as the size, weight, and fragility of the item that needs packing, shipment mode, etc. Two of the popular packaging solutions are using Bubble Wrap and Air Pillow packaging. Both packaging solutions have their advantages as well as shortcomings. So, if you are searching for information to help you choose between one of the two as per your needs, you are in the right place.
Comparison between Bubble Wrapping and Air Pillow Packaging (Air Packs For Shipping)
Bubble Wrapping, also known as bubble cushioning, is a popular and economical packaging solution. Using the right type of bubble wrapping, you can protect any product from external damage. This wrapping solution allows you to protect from the smallest delicate components to heavy and bulky products. For example, you can use a Bubble Wrap with ½ inch bubble sizes to protect larger objects such as a flat-screen TV. On the other hand, you can pack a smaller component or a product such as a wristwatch in a wrap with a bubble size of 3/16 inches.
Anti-Static Bubble Wraps are also available for packaging or electrical items. Electrical products are prone to damage due to static charges. Therefore, using Anti-Static Bubble Wrapping reduces the costs or repairs and refunds by rectifying the chances of static discharge-related faults in a product. However, you must ensure that the anti-static bubble wrap meets industry standards that are PPP-C-795C Class 2, and it must feature the “ESD” emblem.
Bubble Wrapping is an apt solution for packing furniture for shipment and storage. These bubble blankets protect your products against damage caused by any impact. This allows companies to build customers’ trust by delivering the product or item safely and intact. Bubble Wrap rolls commonly come in 3 different widths, i.e., 12, 24, and 48 inches. Bubble Wrapping is an ideal packaging solution due to its flexibility and resilience. However, you have to make sure that all air cells are inflated or else, your packaged product (especially when it is fragile) will be prone to damage.
Benefits of Bubble Wrap Packaging
Here are some of the main benefits of using Bubble Wrap as a packaging solution.
- Versatility – This is a flexible solution to cover objects of any shape and size
- User-Friendly – It is effortless to use and does not require additional packaging material. All you need is tape for securing the wrap in place.
- Reduces Expenses – It is a cost-effective packaging solution due to its lightweight.
- It is an ideal solution to protect the items from any damage.
- Good insulation properties
- Eco-friendly, re-usable
Air Pillow wrapping is an alternate solution to Bubble Wraps. The packaging wrapping solution is also a lightweight air-filled packaging option. However, it is not for wrapping and cushioning products like bubble wrap. Unlike Bubble Wrap, Air Pillows focus more on blocking and bracing products from any impacts in the shipping boxes. Moreover, Air Pillows are identifiable as they have larger air chambers than smaller air cells in a Bubble Wrap.
The Air Pillow typically comes in strings with appropriate numbers or air chambers or pillows. The aim is to secure an item in place and prevent it from shifting within or hitting the sides of the box during shipment or handling. The Air Pillow packaging can be used for many different products or items. The only precaution you must take is to use enough air pillows to prevent braces. However, Air Pillows do need additional packaging equipment, i.e., a maintenance-free mistral machine. This is a compact, efficient, reliable, and user-friendly solution you can easily integrate into your existing packaging system.
Benefits of Air Pillows
Apart from protecting the product, Air Pillows have several other benefits, which include:
- Cost-Effectiveness – this packaging is exceptionally lightweight and adds no additional weight to your overall shipment, saving freight charges.
- Less Inventory space is needed – you can fill Air Pillows on-demand, meaning you can store them in a smaller area and inflate them by the quantity you require.
- Customisation – Air Pillows come in various sizes without a need for full inflation. Therefore, you can customise your Air Pillows as per the product’s type, weight, and size. Moreover, you save money on additional packaging material as these pillows reduce the need for extra protection.
- Easy to Use – each Air Pillow roll has a perforation between each airbag, allowing you to easily tear the string of Air Pillows between the void fillings. This helps reduce your material waste making your packaging process efficient and less expensive.
- Eco-Friendliness – Air Pillow packaging is efficiently disposable and made from HDPE material that is recyclable. According to Dr. Susan Selke at Michigan State’s School of Packaging, high-volume shippers prefer using Air Pillows packaging because it requires less plastic and more air. Moreover, it cuts down the carbon footprint in transportation, energy use, and other plastic-related environmental concerns.
Therefore, Air Pillows are one of the most practical and cost-efficient solutions for void fill in packaging the products.
Choose Packaging Material as per Your Needs
Both the Bubble Wrap packaging rolls and Air Pillow packaging strings are suitable for protecting and securing your products in a box. That said – if you are looking for cost-effective, eco-friendly, and versatile solutions, you can pick either of them as per your needs. It will help you improve your profit bottom line and your customer’s experience and satisfaction.