Save Some Trees – Start A Magazine Swap.

David Quilty

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December 16, 2009

I don’t know about you, but still enjoy sitting on the couch and reading a good magazine. I will never be a Kindle owner because I already spend way too much time with electronics and want to enjoy my leisure time away from them! I do read every magazine cover to cover that enters my house, but I hate the fact that most all of it goes right into recycling once I am done with it. Now multiply that times the millions of households in this country, and you have a major pileup of “read once” magazines. What can you do about it? How about starting a magazine swap amongst your family, friends or neighbors? It’s easier than you think it is, you get to read a lot more stuff than you normally do, and you save yourself and your fellow swappers money. All in addition to saving some trees and the recycling bin from filling up too quickly. How would you get started?

1. Keep a pile of your magazines in your house for a month or two so you can see just how many come in your door. The number will amaze you.

2. Recycle anything you think that no one else will want to read, but be careful here…you would be surprised how many people want to read about things you might not find all that interesting!

3. Talk to your family, friends or neighbors about setting up a swap. Even offer up your front or back stoop of your house for the swap place or find a common area that you all share. In my building, we have a swap pile downstairs. If no one wants to participate, be sure to at least donate all your magazines to the library.

4. Be sure to tell everyone around what you are doing. Tell them to remove their names and addresses from the covers before putting their magazines in the swap box. Every month or two, go through the box and recycle things that are beat up or look like they have not been read in a while.

5. Savor the thought of all the trees and money you are saving. If you see that someone else subscribes to a magazine you normally pay for, you can now unsubscribe. In addition to that, if there is something that a few people really want but no one gets, you can all share the cost of a subscription.

Overall, the magazine swap here is a success. Of course, the best way to read magazines is to get them from the library, but sometimes they don’t have what you want or you can never get the newest issue for months. And really, who doesn’t subscribe to magazines? Everyone does – so you all might as well take advantage of all those subscriptions!