6 Best Ways to Make Money by Going Green

6 Best Ways to Make Money by Going Green

There are loads of ways you can save by reducing, reusing, and recycling. Virtually ever time you do one of these, you are saving. In this guide we list the 6 best ways to be more environmentally friendly and make money or get freebies. Save the pounds and the planet in one go, win win.

1. Up to 50p off hot drinks with reusable cups

This one is close to my heart which is why I’ve put it first. The cheaky drink from a cafe or coffee shop is one of those pleasures we all indulge in from time to time and for many, it is how they start their work day. The cost soon adds up, as do those disposable cups, so what would you say if I told you, you can get money off that next hot drink if you take your own cup? Many stores will accept any brand cup as long as it has a lid and fits in a coffee machine. If you don’t already own a reusable cup, the cheapest way is to buy a £1 cup at starbucks but my favourite travel mug is the Kambukka Etna as it keeps my coffee nice and hot (or my ice coffee cold) and the lid “locks” shut so I don’t have any accidental spillages.

Pret a Manger has the best offer at the moment with 50p off, but you can get 30p off at Starbucks, 25p off and Costa and many smaller indepents are doing deals. You can use the free Refil app to find places offering discounts and rewards for bringing your own cup.

2. Sell Your Unwanted Goods

I won’t talk about selling your old phone, everyone knows you can do that, right? But did you know can sell pretty much anything, even things you might class as rubbish, like old jam jars or corks. As long as someone can find a use for them then they will buy them. The easiest way to find out if you can sell something is by checking what’s been sold recently on classified add sites.

Finding a new home for your cast-offs is not only environmentally friendly but can make you some serious cash and give you a nice warm feeling. I replaced an old wooden floor and managed to sell it for £582, it was nice to have the cash to help pay for the new floor but it was also great to pass it onto the new people knowing that it would continue to be used.

There are many sites out there, and you might need to look around to find the best one for selling your particular item. The ones I’ve used that cover most items are Gumtree and eBay.

3. Get Vouchers from Shops for Recycling

Shops are seeing the trend to be more green and they are getting in on the act. This works for them as there is money to be saved in reducing their waste but it also promotes shopper loyalty and keeps us going back to them. It is worth looking around for deals as there are several retailers offering freebies and discounts, here are the top selection we have found. Let us know in the comments if you find others.

Clothes and textiles


Plastic Bottles

This is a bit niche but if you live in the right areas you can make use of this. Iceland, Sainsbury’s, and Lidl are running trials in some of their stores where they will give you a 5-10p voucher for every plastic bottle you return. This isn’t being run in all their stores so check out the links to see if you are lucky enough to be able to make use of this.

Plastic carrier bags

We can’t all be like this lady and create clothes out of carrier bags so for us mere mortals our best option to make money from carrier bags is sell them back to the shops.

  • Ocado: 10p for its own bags
  • Morrisons: 10p for its own bags

4. Refill your water bottle for free

Water should be free, right? So why is it in this list? Although we have easy access to water in the UK we still use 36 million plastic bottles every day! The Refill scheme is trying to change this. Their Refil app lists over 30,000 location where you can fill up your own bottle or flask, even if you’re not a customer. I’ve always got my Camelbak Eddy+ in my backpack but there are plenty of other water bottles out there that will suit your needs. Just avoid buying disposable plasic bottles.

5. Get free food and fight food waste

Household food waste is bad but compercial food waste is so much worse and it is one of the biggest sources of emissions. The great news is that you can help reduce this and get free food at the same time. The OLIO app started off as a way to share food they don’t need and now has deals with the likes of Costa, Tesco, and Pret a Manger to collect their surplus. Everything on this app is free and it is super easy to use.

Another app to mention is To Good To Go, the “magic bags” of surplus food available through this app are sold at a hugely discounted price. There are loads of restaurants and shops to choose from so you’ll probably find some of your favourites in the list.

With both these apps, things tend to go fast so keep an eye on your favourites.

6. Furnish your house with free stuff

Giveaway sites are a great way to save cash and pickup some free things. You’d be suprised what you can find with the listings covering a wide selection of things. Freecycle and Freegle are the big names amd they are free-to-join. Much like the free food apps, it is your responsibilty to keep an eye out for new freebies and they go quick.

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