Are Lottery Tickets Recyclable?

The history of lottery tickets is quite fascinating. It started small, and before anyone knew it, it went state-wide! Next thing you know, everyone is trying to buy those scratch-offs and hoping they win the next couple of million bucks.

Till now, some of us don’t visit the grocery store without buying a couple of lottery tickets. After all, you never know when your luck will hit. But statistics state that you have to buy one lottery ticket every week to have a shot of winning once in 269,000 years.

So, if you’re still hopeful, then you likely have your collection of lottery tickets. The more you buy, the more you have to worry about disposing of them the right way. How do you eventually do that? Have you ever considered recycling lottery tickets?

Well, if you’re environmentally sensitive, you’d like to have a proper disposal method. In this blog post, we’ll explore all your options, especially recycling. Enjoy!

Can You Recycle Lottery Tickets?

If you win the lottery by a slight chance, you may choose to laminate your winning ticket. In that instance, you don’t have to worry about recycling.

However, there are higher chances that you’ll buy a bunch of tickets, which you’ll have to throw away. Can you recycle them instead?

Absolutely! You can recycle lottery tickets, as long as they’re made from paper. How would you know that? You have to make it pass through the ‘rip’ test.

If it tears like paper, then you can take it to a recycling center with the rest of your household waste. You can also examine the back of the ticket for the recycling symbol. If you find it, then go ahead and recycle it.

Now, on the other hand, when you tear your lottery ticket, if you find foil or plastic in it, then you may be unable to recycle it. Some recycling centers accept lottery tickets made from foil and plastic, but you can only find out by making inquiries.

If yours doesn’t, you’ll have to find alternate uses or disposal methods for the cards.

Can You Recycle Scratch-off Lottery Tickets?

Lottery tickets started with paper. You buy a couple of tickets and cross your fingers tightly, hoping any of your tickets have the winning number. Lottery tickets like that are easy to get rid of – you can recycle them with your paper waste. You can also repurpose them.

On the other hand, scratch-offs may be a bit trickier to recycle. They’re made from plastic or foil, and as the name implies, you need to scratch them to reveal your lottery number.

These are more aesthetically appealing, and they provide suspense, which is just as fun as hoping you win the lottery.

However, they are a bit challenging to dispose of. Since they’re made from small pieces of plastic or foil, you may have some difficulty finding a recycling center that accepts them.

You see, anyone can use infrared light to see through the lottery tickets, so people may find it easy to get selective with the numbers they choose. That’s why layers upon layers have to be added to the lottery tickets to conceal the treasure – the number.

That’s why it’s so difficult to recycle scratch-offs. They have many layers, but when you take them apart, you can recycle the pieces.

There is a caveat, though – you can’t recycle the foil and plastic parts. Instead, you have to recycle the paper component and throw the rest in the trash can.

Thankfully, they’re small pieces, and even though it’s not exactly best to dispose of these things in the trash can, we aren’t left with many other choices. In addition, their small size means that their environmental impact will be minimal at best.

Can Lottery Tickets be Put in the Bin?

If you’ve been keeping your fingers tightly crossed and hoping to win the lottery, then you’ve likely been racking up quite the collection. It’s best to save them up and dispose of them together.

Is the garbage can the right place to put these lottery tickets? If you’re concerned about the environmental impact, then this question likely bugs you.

Well, the answer varies. It depends on the type of lottery ticket. Some can go in the bin because there are no alternatives for recycling them, while others can be recycled. So, they should go to the recycling bin instead.

Now, which ones should go in the which bin?

When you buy a lottery ticket, you can check the back for the recycling symbol. If you find it there, then you don’t need to make it go through the ‘rip’ test. Instead, you can just put it with your paper waste and take them all to the recycling center.

However, if you don’t find the recycling symbol on it, you may have to carry out the ‘rip’ test. Tear it into two – you should be able to separate the plastic and foil from the actual paper.

Then, you can recycle the paper and throw the other parts in the trash.

Are Lottery Tickets Worth it?

The average lottery ticket costs $2, and you can activate some other bonuses by paying an extra dollar. For example, suppose you were playing to win the Powerball lottery – you stand a chance to win as much as $1.5 billion.

Of course, someone will buy a ticket or seven and scream “I won the lottery” at the end of the day. Said person must have spent about a total of $10.

So, are lottery tickets worth it? It largely depends. If you’re ready to endure many letdowns and losses, then go for it!

Just imagine spending a couple of bucks on lottery tickets and winning millions and billions of dollars. But, of course, that’s more than worth it!

However, we need to analyze your chances of winning.

Chances are fascinating to analyze. For instance, did you know that you have one in 2.3 million chances of getting struck by lightning? But it happens.

You may also have one in 10 million changes or getting struck by airplane parts from a crash. But again, some people die this way.

The same applies to winning a lottery. However, your chances are much slimmer. There are usually thousands, if not millions, of lottery tickets, and one has the winning number.

It’s pretty consoling to know that there’s always that lucky person that buys a ticket on their way to work, wins, and quits their job immediately. Or that person who goes to the supermarket for a pack of coke buys a couple of lottery tickets and wins.

So, when you feel it’s your lucky day, you can buy a couple of tickets. You never know.

Are lottery tickets worth it? That’s very relative – you may find it to be worth it if you’re optimistic. It might be fun for you too, a way to trigger suspense and a bout of adrenaline rush.

On the other hand, it may be a bit much for you. Determining if lottery tickets are worth it is a very relative opinion.

What to Do With Old Lottery Tickets?

The odds of winning a lottery are very slim and certainly not in everyone’s favor. As such, it’s inevitable to accumulate a ton of non-winning lottery tickets. So what can you do with them besides recycling?

Lottery tickets are made essentially from paper, so you can upcycle them as you would any other paper waste. We have many options for you, but first, have you considered re-entering the race?

Yes, you can! Some states allow you to re-enter and try again. You’ll be using your non-winning lottery ticket. They’re called second chance lotteries, and you can enter your ticket or ticket number into other games where you stand a chance of winning something, big or small.

Not all states offer this option, so it’s best to check your state’s website before getting your hopes up again.

To get started, visit your state’s lottery website and create an account. Then, you can enter a typical lottery ticket into the system or choose to enter a scratch-off. At times, you can enter both.

However, you have to be very mindful of the start and finish dates. Your lottery ticket can expire, and if you fail to re-enter before the finish date, then you miss out on the opportunity to redeem your chances of winning.

You can win cash, or even a car, paid vacation, and some other juicy prizes.

Alternatively, you could get crafty with your lottery tickets. Some artists have been known to get creative with lottery tickets. For example, Lauren Was and Adam Eckstrom have wowed us repeatedly with their artsy projects built entirely from lottery tickets.

Of course, you may be unable to get as creative as that, but there are some other crafts you could try out, and some of them include:

1. Papier-mâché

While you may be no Lauren Was, you certainly can get creative with papier-mâché projects. The best part is, your kids can also enjoy these crafts.

You can fashion just about anything from your papier-mâché project. The lottery tickets also have different colors so that you won’t be left with a boring monochrome project.

Now, if you’re using scratch-offs, you’ll have to prepare the tickets. First, separate the foil and plastic from the actual paper and dispose of the former.

2. Lottery Wallpaper

Do you have a bed stand, dresser, or even a wall that looks boring to you? You could use your lottery tickets to spruce up your home. You’ll need some carpenter’s glue or any other adhesive.

Then, don’t be afraid to get creative. You could consult Pinterest or any website that offers artsy tips. The best part is that you can place these lottery tickets on anything in your home – it gives off a unique and aesthetically pleasing appeal.


If you enjoy a good book, you can understand how annoying it is to forget to mark the page you were on before you had to close it. However, with bookmarks, you’ll have a blissful reading experience.

So, instead of throwing your lottery tickets away, you could turn them into bookmarks. You can decide to get creative and attach two or three tickets with an adhesive, sprinkle some glitter on it, and maybe add a pendant or two. Remember, anything can be a canvas in the hands of a creative.


Have you ever wanted to feel the thrill of winning the lottery? Well, like it or not, some people win it, but it takes a special kind of luck coupled with a ton of lottery tickets.

As such, you may have accrued quite the collection, leaving you with the burden of disposing of them properly. That’s why we’ve written this blog post – so please, read up and make better decisions.

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About Rinkesh

A true environmentalist by heart ❤️. Founded Conserve Energy Future with the sole motto of providing helpful information related to our rapidly depleting environment. Unless you strongly believe in Elon Musk‘s idea of making Mars as another habitable planet, do remember that there really is no 'Planet B' in this whole universe.