How it works

Bottles, cans and cartons make up a large proportion of the litter on our streets, beaches and green spaces. Tackling the problem costs NSW millions of dollars every year. Return and Earn is a way for us all to help solve the litter problem and be rewarded for our efforts.
  • 1. Collect eligible bottles and cans

    1. Collect eligible bottles and cans

    Not all bottles, cans and cartons are included in Return and Earn. To help you work out what can and can’t be returned, use our quick container checker or search the container database. Remember, even if a container isn’t eligible for a Return and Earn refund, it can still be recycled through your household recycling collection.  
  • 2. Take your containers to a return point

    2. Take your containers to a return point

    We currently have over 600 Return and Earn return points across NSW, with more being added every week. There are different types of return points  and the best one for you could depend on how many bottles, cans and cartons you are returning and how you would like to receive your refund.
  • 3. Earn a refund or make a donation

    3. Earn a refund or make a donation

    Every eligible bottle, can or carton  you return is worth 10 cents.  Reverse Vending Machines offer you cash vouchers, electronic payment (via the myTOMRA app) or the option to donate.  Over the Counter sites offer you cash refunds and some offer the opportunity to donate.  Automated Depots offer cash refunds and some offer electronic transfers.
  • 4. Connect with your community

    4. Connect with your community

    Whether you’re an individual, business, school or community organisation there are many ways you can get involved in Return and Earn.

About Return & Earn

  • What is Return and Earn?

    Return and Earn is the largest litter reduction initiative introduced in NSW, which commenced on 1 December 2017.

    Littering impacts all of us. It spoils our environment, costs millions of dollars to clean up, and is associated with anti-social behaviour. Drink container litter makes up 44 per cent of the volume of all litter across NSW.

    Return and Earn is reducing the number of drink containers in the litter stream and is helping to meet the goal of reducing the volume of litter in NSW by 40 per cent by 2020.

  • How does Return and Earn work?

    Collect eligible containers and take them to a return point to earn 10 cents per container.  This refund can be received in the form of a retail voucher, electronic refund to a PayPal account, or you can donate your refund to a Donation Partner.