GTA Online is a game all about guns, cars, and making money. And there is no way to make money more lucratively than with CEO crates! Officially known as special cargo, CEO crates allow players to source and smuggle various illegal goods through warehouses all throughout Los Santos for big money.
But just how do you get started with it? What properties do you need to buy in order to get things up and running? Can you make money with this business passively? We will be going over everything you need to know in this guide on how to make money with CEO crates/special cargo in GTA Online!
How to Make Money With CEO Crates
Let’s get right into the main walkthrough!
What are CEO crates?
First, let’s get the basics out of the way — just what exactly are CEO crates? CEO crates are valuable smuggled goods, ranging from electronics to counterfeit items and more. You acquire them through sourcing, and can then either sell them right away or store large quantities in your warehouse to sell in bulk later.
Selling CEO crates is one of the oldest and most well-known ways to make money in GTA Online. They made their debut in the online sandbox back in June 2016 as a part of the Further Adventures in Finance and Felony DLC. Since then, they have remained more or less the same in terms of how they function and how they’re acquired. At least, until the Criminal Enterprises DLC.
With the release of this DLC on July 26, 2022, Rockstar added new ways to make money with this business and a brand new way to acquire CEO crates. There’s never been a better time to invest in CEO crates. So if you are interested in getting started, you’ve come to the right guide!
Getting Started: How do I buy an office space in GTA Online?
Like many DLCs in GTA Online, CEO crates are locked behind paywalls in the form of properties. In the case of CEO crates, there are actually two paywalls. You’ll need to purchase an office space to oversee the operation and a warehouse in order to store your illegal goods.
To buy the office space, you’ll first need to head over to a computer in-game or pull out your iFruit phone to get access to GTA V’s internet. From there, go to the website Dynasty8 Executive. This website sells four different office spaces for you to choose from. Each is at a different location and features a different price. The office spaces available for purchase are listed as follows:
- Maze Bank West: $1,000,000 — Cheapest property, located farther away from the best warehouses, recommended if you’re just starting out and on a budget.
- Arcadius Business Center: $2,250,000 — Second least expensive, but still fairly far away from the best warehouses and not worth the extra million dollars. Skip this one.
- Lombank West: $3,100,000 — Third least expensive, located in a good spot close to the city center, recommended if you want to save money while also getting a good location.
- Maze Bank Tower: $4,000,000 — Most expensive, located in the center of Los Santos, recommended if you want to flex and/or want the best possible location.
Getting Started: How do I buy a warehouse?
After you’ve decided on and purchased your new office space, next you’ll want to get a warehouse so you can store all your illicitly-sourced goods. There are many different warehouses across Los Santos, each divided into three different categories based on size. I recommend buying a large warehouse, as that’s the best way to make money.
When you sell a full warehouse, you’ll gain an additional amount of money per crate, and this number increases based on your warehouse’s size. If you sell from a full small warehouse, you’ll get $15,000 per crate. For a medium warehouse, it’s $17,500 per crate. For a large warehouse, you’ll make $20,000 per crate.
You can only buy a maximum of five warehouses, so it’s best to buy them close together so you can quickly travel to each one to start sourcing products. It’s also a good idea to buy ones that are closer to your other businesses — such as your arcade — so you can start doing other money-making activities once you are finished sourcing crates.
The warehouses I recommend are as follows:
- Wholesale Furniture: $1,900,000 — Located in Cypress Flats, near the warehouse below.
- Cypress Warehouses: $3,265,000 — Located in Cypress Flats, near the warehouse above.
- Darnel Bros Warehouse: $3,500,000 — Located in La Mesa, near the warehouse below.
- Logistics Depot: $2,600,00 — Located in La Mesa, near the warehouse above.
- West Vinewood Backlot: $2,135,000 — Located in West Vinewood, near some of the best locations for other businesses in the game (Eight-Bit Arcade, Burton Autoshop, Hawick Agency, etc).
If you’re just starting out and can only get one, purchase the Wholesale Furniture warehouse, as that’s the cheapest option. Then buy the others either once they go on sale or once you make enough to afford them.
CEO Crates in GTA Online
With that out of the way, let’s get into our tips and tricks on the CEO crates themselves.
How do I source CEO crates?
Okay, so you’ve bought an office space and your first warehouse. Now it’s time for the most important part — sourcing products to fill up your warehouse! There are two different ways for you to source products: the manual way, and the passive way. The manual way sees you getting the crates yourself (preferably with friends to help), and the passive way lets you go do other things while you wait.
To source crates manually, you’ll need to enter your CEO office and look for the desktop computer located in the back left part of the office. From there, you can sit down at it and select Special Cargo. Then just select any one of the warehouses you own (look for the green arrows). From here you can source 1–3 crates at once for $2,000, $8,000, and $18,000, respectively.
I recommend you always buy three crates at once. Even if it is pretty spendy and even if you are doing this solo, you’ll still get your crates faster than if you sourced one crate at a time. Once you select one of the options, it will launch you into a source mission. From there, just follow the objectives the game provides you and bring the crates back to your warehouse.
For the passive method, go inside your warehouse and look for the NPC icon on your map. Walk up to that NPC and you’ll be able to spend $7,500 for them to source a crate for you. They can source anywhere from 1–3 crates at a time, and it will only take them 48 minutes. Once they acquire the product, you’ll get a notification from the game telling you how many crates they’ve sourced.
How do I sell CEO crates?
Okay, so let’s say you’ve been at it for a while and you’ve finally sourced enough product to sell a full warehouse. What do you do? To get started, head to the warehouse you want to sell from and interact with the laptop located at the front office where you walk in. From there, you’ll have a few different options for how many you want to sell at once. I recommend selling all your crates for the most money.
Then, you’ll leave your warehouse and will be given one of several different types of sale missions. These can range from making deliveries on trucks to hopping in a boat by the docks and delivering them across the water. Just be sure to get some people to help you sell! These missions will sometimes have multiple vehicles and it’s a pain to have to deliver each one at a time.
The missions themselves are fairly easy to do. Just follow the on-screen instructions and don’t let your product get destroyed by other players. If you go into the interaction menu, select SecuroServ, and then CEO abilities, you can find something called Ghost Organization. Activating this will remove you and your team’s blips from the map, making it less likely for you to be attacked by other players!
Inside your warehouse, there is a workbench you can use to upgrade your delivery vehicles, which also makes sale missions easier. Most of the time you should be able to complete the sale mission without them, so I wouldn’t bother getting anything unless you really think you need them.
Other Tips & Tricks about CEO Crates
Before we end off our article on how to make money with CEO crates/special cargo in GTA Online, let’s discuss how you can make the most out of this business with some basic tips and tricks.
Source crates manually and passively at the same time. If you don’t have any other businesses to attend to or any heists you want to do, this is a good tip. You can pay your workers to source crates for you, then start a source mission yourself! This allows you to get more crates faster.
Use the terrorbyte to source crates outside your office. If you go to the in-game website Warstock Cache & Carry, you can find a vehicle called the terrorbyte. This special vehicle allows you to start source missions for CEO cargo outside your office! You can spawn it in and place it outside your warehouse for fast and easy sourcing.
Sell in invite-only lobbies. Recently, with the new Criminal Enterprises DLC, you can now sell CEO crates in invite-only lobbies. This is great if you want to sell your crates without any hassle. Just be warned, you get a bonus for selling crates in sessions with other CEOs. Using this tip will mean you’ll lose out on that bonus money!
Wait until double money weeks to sell. If you’re bummed out about losing the bonus money mentioned earlier, you can always wait for a double money week! Every now and then, Rockstar will make selling crates worth twice as much cash. This is great if you are looking to make the most amount of cash with this business and are okay with waiting a few months to sell your stock.
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