How to Properly Dispose Your Used Cell Phone

There are 3 things certain in life: Death, Taxes, and needing new cell phones. The average person gets a new cell phone every 18 months. This means that in the past decade, the average person has had at least six different phones. So what do people do with the cheap cell phones that are no longer in the starting lineup?

The sad truth is most people either let them collect dust in a drawer, or they simply throw them away. The latter of the two has quickly become an environmental menace. Each year, over 130 million cell phones are discarded into landfills, each phone containing numerous carcinogens such as lead and beryllium.  But if you can’t just throw out your phone, how should you dispose of it?

Hmmm, well-being that I love to cook, my first thought is to throw it in the microwave and see if I can turn it into a fancy dish to serve at my next soirée.  I quickly learned this was not a viable option after watching this video. Lets move on to the next option.

In addition to loving to cook, I also love sports and other competitions. I heard about a competition in Sweden that would be perfect, The Mobile Phone Throwing World Championships! Sadly, the plane ticket to Sweden didn’t fit into my budget. I’m running out of ideas, what else can I do?

Think Scott, think! What can I do!? I know, I’ll turn to the greatest resource on earth, the internet. Searching, searching, spam, searching, spam, searching…AHA! I came across these pictures.  Artists in the city Cluj Napoca in Transylvania used their talents to create a sculpture that is not only interesting, but a great use of old cell phones. Sadly, my small inventory of used personal cell phones, mixed with my general lack of artistic abilities, leaves me with yet another road block in my cell phone disposal journey.

Heartbroken and disconcerted, I was ready to give up all hope. But then, like a beam of light sent from the heavens, the answer was presented to me. My friend Kyle referred me to a website called The Blue Dot. This magical online retailer of refurbished cell phones goes far beyond just making sales. “You send them your cell phone,” Kyle explained, “and then, in a week, you get a check!” Really? A company that will pay me for my phone? This sounded too good to be true.

Hastily, I booted up my computer, double clicked my web browser, typed in the URL,  filled out the form and clicked send. Within 24 hours, I was given a great quote. Unable to turn down the top dollar offer I had received, I sent this wonderful company my phone.  They even paid for shipping! Sure enough, one week later, there was my check in the mail. I was informed by the friendly Blue Dot staff that they could also deposit money directly into my PayPal account, but I decided to help out my local postal service and use the conventional mailing system.

Having such a great experience, I submitted inquiries into all of my phones. While none of the really old ones had any cash value, The Blue Dot customer service representative that I spoke with told me they would recycle the phones for me so they do not end up in dumps. In addition, they would donate to have a tree planted as part of The Nature Conservancy’s Plant a Billion Trees campaign for each cell phone I sent in. I get paid to have trees planted! What a great deal!

Thank you Blue Dot, you really are saving the world, one cell phone at a time!

Sources: This post was inpires by a customer of ours. Thanks Scott from Athol, MA.


    Good article and cause. Keep up the good work.

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