Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Couple Recycles Their Way To Honeymoon Bliss!

The BBC has a great story up right now about John and Ann Till, who recently recycled enough material to get themselves two business class seats on a flight back from a holiday in America.

Here's how:

It seems that Tesco supermarkets is trying out a new plan whereby automated machines will take in recycling while awarding "reward points." The points can in turn be traded for air miles. Put enough recyclables into the machine and you could fly anywhere.

It's the "enough recyclables" part that had Mr. and Mr.s Till scouring roadsides and vacant lots for three months in order to get enough recycling to achieve their goal.

From the article:

"For every four recycled items, they earned a reward point which was then converted into BA air miles.

They amassed 36,000 miles, which they used to fly back in business class from their US honeymoon.

The Tills came up with the idea while buying petrol at Tesco in Havant, where an automated recycling unit that gives loyalty-card points had been installed for a trial period.

They had enough money for a Queen Mary 2 cruise to New York but could not afford the flights home, so the couple started scouring the streets of their home town for rubbish, clocking up the miles for their dream honeymoon.

Mr Till, 31, a railways communications manager, said: "We wanted to make our honeymoon special and were trying to think of ways to raise money for it.

"I saw on the machine that you got a Tesco Clubcard point for every four items you put in. For every 250 points you got 600 British Airways miles.

"We worked out that it would be possible to turn rubbish into our flights - as long as we had enough."

Okay, let's do some math!

36,000 miles. Every 250 points gets you 600 miles. Every four items gets you one point.

36,000 divided by 600 = 60. So, sixty "lots" of 600.
250 times 60 = 15,000 to get the number of "point lots needed"
15,000 times 4 = 60,000 cans!

Sixty thousand cans. Wow.
Thinking about this massive win/win is fun. Who doesn't win here? Tesco wins by simultaneously cleaning towns and raising positive awareness, the towns win by being cleaned, the Tills win by cleaning their town and getting to go on exciting adventures, SuperForest wins by getting to post about it, and you at home win by transmission of great ideas, via Tesco.

(Imagine how clean your town would be if our supermarkets installed recycling machines like these? Not only cans, but plastic bags, paper, electronics. Just about everything can be recycled, it's the equation that needs to change. How great would it be if you were desperate and needed food and shelter, if you could collect some recyclables and trade them in for a hot meal and a place to stay? It would be so righteous.)

Congratulations to everybody! Wins all around! Tesco and British Airways, you are tops in our book. John and Ann, you are heroes.

The world needs lots of great ideas like this. Keep 'em coming!


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