Make money by collecting bottles
Updated: Nov 17
Need extra cash? Save the environment as you collect bottles, and while you're at it, get some extra money.
A deposit is charged for every canned beverage bought to encourage the buyer to return the empty bottle for recycling. The beverage must be equipped with a Palpa sticker.
Finland has the best system of recycling beverage materials in the world. Suomen Palautuspakkaus Oy "Palpa" is in charge of the collection, recycling, and reusing of beverage packaging materials. Recycling empty beverage packaging like tin cans and plastic and glass bottles helps minimize unnecessary trash and decrease pollution.
Music festivals and outdoor events are usually the perfect places when people just leave empty bottles around.
Deposits earn per empty beverage with a PALPA sticker:
Tin can (0,15 €), glass bottle ( 0,10€), 0.50 l plastic bottle (0,20€), 1.50l plastic bottle ( 0,40€)
How to return
Grocery stores have an automatic vending machine for empty beverages. As you place the empty beverage in the machine, the barcode indicates the deposit. After placing all the empty beverages, the vending machine will calculate the total amount of the refund.
Claim the stub by pressing the green button. The cashier will convert the receipt to cash. If the vending machine is unable to read the barcode, simply show the bottle to the cashier with a clear PALPA sticker on it. The cashier will pay the refund. You can also the stub and get refunded on a later date.
Lidl beverages can only be return to Lidl supermarket and they accept ALKO and Palpa-marked bottles. The exchange rate is according to the size and the same rate to the Palpa bottles. Lidl empty beverages are only accepted in Lidl grocery stores.
Tax-free and taxable income
If you return your own bottles that you personally bought from the shop, it is tax free. However, picking up bottles from the streets is taxable income which means you need to report it to the tax office yearly so you might need to save the receipts of the refund.
Additional info: www.palpa.fi and https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-5395287