I would say it depends on where you live. I recently shipped a weapon in a box because where I live, it is a bad idea for anyone to know that a weapon is inside. It would most likely be 'lost or stolen.' Bushmaster told me to just put it in the unlocked hard case and hand it over to the UPS driver. That is a very bad idea here in NY. First of all even if it didn't get stolen, I would not want the UPS guy to open the case and play Rambo with my weapon. I found a box that would fit the weapon inside with plenty of room for bubble paper and foam shavings. Then I taped the outside of the box with about 5 rolls of tape, two of them were this industrial rubber tape that is amazingly sticky and it protects both unauthorized entry and the itegrity of the package during transit/handling. The weapon itself was wrapped in several layers of bubble paper, with tape securing the layers in many places. Even if you opened the box and took the weapon out and held it in your hands, you would not know what was inside. You had to see this thing, it was kinda funny. I know it was overkill and it probably took the Bushy gunsmiths 20 minutes to open the box, but it gave me peace of mind. Anyway, even though Bushy recommended shipping it in just the hard case alone, they shipped it back to me in a box, similar to mine, minus the 5 rolls of tape, and inside the cardboard box they had the weapon in a new hard case. They gave me a new hard case free of charge, that was cool of them! I suppose they had to destroy my 'Frankenpackage' at the factory, leaving them no safe way to ship her back other than the hard case. It is your weapon and your town, so you are to be the best judge of the general conditions that your weapon will be travelling in and the integrity of the carrier. Good luck.