Being eco-aware and mindful of impact will not only help save the planet — by helping to reduce our environmental waste — but also assists in creating work and employment. This is because waste separation supports the businesses of collectors, environmental entrepreneurs and recycling buy-back centres.

Whether heading to the coast or spending time with family, being away from home is no excuse to set aside year-round recycling habits. Here are some ideas to keep the holidays as eco-friendly as possible:

1. All glass bottles and jars can be recycled.

To do so, simply rinse them and remove their lids or caps. Then, drop them off at your nearest glass bank. These banks can be found in your major metropoles. You can also find your nearest glass bank on the TGRC website, no matter where you travel to.

2. Collect any bottles and jars over the course of your trip.

Collect until such time that you have a bag or boxful. Be sure to drop them off at a recycling bank. Also note that, within South Africa, it is not necessary to separate different coloured glass before placing it into a glass bank. 

3. Some alcohol beverage bottles and glass cooldrink bottles can be returned to the retailer.

Creative and inspired individuals can find new uses for glass bottles or jars, like employing glass jars as glassware to bring a trendy feel to bohemian strawberry cocktails.

4. Glass jars can be reused in other ways.

An example of this would be filling a glass jar with a variety of chocolates and sweets and then wrapping it up as a present (or as a cost-effective flower vase alternative).

In South Africa, at least 8 out of 10 bottles and jars are prevented from entering landfills through the returnable bottling system and recycling of glass. Through the tips mentioned above, South Africans can play a role in helping to boost this eco-stat by recycling, reusing and returning.

For more information, visit You can also follow The Glass Recycling Company on Facebook or on Twitter.