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How to recycle magazines for cash

Updated February 21, 2017

Magazine subscriptions provide you with regularly updated hard-copy literature about subjects that interest you or your customers or patients. Paper magazines also eventually provide you with clutter. The magazines can stack up over time if you receive magazines on a regular basis or if you have collected or saved magazines over the years. Although many people equate the idea of recycling to free donation, one of the most common methods of recycling is offering your magazines to others in exchange for cash.

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  1. Bundle your magazines by title or subject and place them in boxes or paper bags. Place damaged magazines in a box or bag separate from the rest.

  2. Contact used bookstores, speciality or hobby retail shops or their online counterparts. Many bookstores and speciality retail shops purchase used magazines to sell to people who are trying to complete a magazine collection. For example, if you have back issues of a particular hobby magazine, a local hobby shop owner may purchase the magazines or offer you in-store credit.

  3. Seek out clubs or speciality or hobby groups to recycle your magazines for cash. As with certain retailers, a club or members in the organisation may purchase magazines to add to a library, archive or personal collection.

  4. Offer the bundles for sale at a garage, yard, car boot/boot sales, flea market, auction or other sales venues.

  5. Place a newspaper or online classified ad to sell any classic, popular or collectable magazine titles.

  6. Check if your local municipality or recycling facilities offer cash rewards for recycling. For example, a direct monthly cash payout or a ticket in a lottery to win cash to put toward your waste disposal bill might be options.

  7. Tip

    Some retailers will pay cash for old damaged magazines to sell in sections as prints -- essentially, the magazine is pulled apart and old advertisements or artwork are framed and sold. If you have any remaining magazines after you've recycled the bulk for cash, donate the magazines to a school, public library or charity or recycle the magazines through your local waste paper recycling facility. If you donate to a charity, ask for a receipt so that you can claim a charitable contribution tax deduction on an itemised return.


    Never throw your magazines in the trash. Even if you can't get cash for your magazines, place the magazines with recycling so that recyclers can turn the waste paper into new paper products. Never bundle your magazines using cord or twine, as you can damage the cover and page edges.

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Things You'll Need

  • Paper bag or cardboard box

About the Author

Irene A. Blake

Based in Southern Pennsylvania, Irene A. Blake has been writing on a wide range of topics for over a decade. Her work has appeared in projects by The National Network for Artist Placement, the-phone-book Limited and GateHouse Media. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Shippensburg University.

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