Many Recycling Centers Are Not Equipped To Recycle Your Used Gift Cards. Here’s How To Get It Done.
Most of the traditional, plastic gift cards we receive are made of a very high-quality PVC that requires a unique recycling process. Not to worry, here are a few quick ways you can recycle your cards and make sure they keep our planet healthy:
Return the card back to the retailer after use.
Many retailers, especially chain and big-box retailers are set up and fully equipped to collect and recycle these cards. They have specific recycling bins for their PVC plastic waste. Some big box stores that sell a high volume of gift cards even have recycling bins in store just for this purpose. Next time you are in your favorite store, ask them about their recycling practices.
Drop off or mail cards to recycling centers in your community.
You will want to check and make sure this center is equipped for special PVC processing. Many of these recycling centers actually turn your old gift cards into your next, new gift card. This keeps the retail circle moving and reduces waste!
Refill your card to use again.
No one carries cash anymore. In fact, some businesses have stopped accepting cash as a form of payment. Places like Starbucks encourage customers to refill or recharge their cards over and over again. This expedites their transaction process and consumers become invested in the points and prizes that their card earns them. If you can’t recycle your card locally, see if this is an option.
Up-cycle your gift card into something new.
Some retailers have BEAUTIFUL gift cards and actually change up their designs quite often. The most avid fans scramble to collect all of the designs of their favorite brands. Some of these designs are so rare that collectors pay big money for their favorite “models” of cashless cards. Collectors and crafting groups are out there giving these cards a second life by creating something new from these once cash-rich cards. You can find a lot of really interesting up-cycled goods made from gift cards on Etsy and other sites like Totally Green Crafts if you just can’t part with your gift cards.
You can feel better about gifting and giving these plastic gift cards of joy knowing that you can keep them from filling up landfills by recycling them at a proper PVC recycling center or turning them into your next work of art.