I work part-time at a restaurant (~1-2 days a week) because the owner offered me a job. The perk is not the money. It's the fact that when cases of Founders or Bells bottles are ready to be recycled, I give them $4.80 and I get a case of empties that have easy-to-remove labels. You might try talking to a bar manager at a local place. They might look at you funny, but tell them it's for a good cause
My LHBS used to pay $.10 for empties and then sell them on for that same $.10 each. I bought some 300 from them before they stopped doing it. It was a great deal. You could sort through them and choose your favorite bottles. Since then, all my bottles come with beer in them.
I use Mexican Coke bottles. My employees buy the cokes at work, I keep the bottles. Foreign coca-cola is better than the US version, by the way. As long as you don't take your IPAs in the sunlight, clear bottles work fine.