This past year, my roommate broke the news to me: “You’re not only a Starbucks snob… You’re an addict.” In an effort to use my Starbucks habit for the greater good, I decided to impart some of my latte-ordering knowledge on the general public. Here are 9 ways to improve your Starbucks experience.

1. A cheaper latte


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Lattes are great, but the prices often aren’t. Try a caffe misto, which is half coffee, half milk. Not only is it cheaper than a regular latte, but it has less calories.

2. A cool drink on a hot day


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Iced teas are generally watered down, so ask for no water with your tea and the flavor will be stronger. Additionally, if you request light ice, you’ll no longer find yourself with half a cup of ice when you’re done with your drink.

3. BYO…


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Bring your own travel mug, tumbler, or cup. You’ll save 10 cents on the price of your drink – and you can congratulate yourself on being eco-friendly.

4. Temperature


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Tired of finding yourself with a lukewarm drink or burning your tongue? Specify temperature when ordering – just so you know, a standard drink is made from 145-165 degrees. If you want it cooler, order at a “kid’s temperature” (130 degrees). If you plan to drink it over a longer period of time, try ordering it “extra hot” or at 180 degrees

#SpoonTip: You may want to ask for a double cup at this temperature.

5. Caffeinate properly


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For espresso-based drinks, a tall has one shot, a grande and hot venti have two, and a cold venti has three. Need to stay up studying all night or want to go to bed early? No worries… just specify how many shots you want in your drink. If you want to sound fancy, you can order a “double,” a “triple,” or a “quad” – each one relating to the number of shots. Alternatively, try “half-caf,” which is made with half regular coffee and half decaf.

6. Wet foam versus dry foam


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if you order a cappuccino, much of your drink will be composed of foam. A simple way to alleviate this is to order it “wet” (less foam). If you are a fan of foam, try a “dry” (more foam) cappuccino. Lattes, while considerably less foamy than cappuccinos, also contain about two inches of foam and can be ordered without it.

7. The caramel macchiato


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Try ordering your drink upside down; it will change your life. Essentially, when a caramel macchiato is made, the milk is added first, and then the shots of espresso and caramel. However, if you order it upside down, the espresso and caramel go in first, which helps the drink to mix better.

8. Sugar-free syrups


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When you “skinny” a drink, this includes sugar-free syrup, non-fat milk, and no whipped cream. However, the sugar-free syrups are made up of artificial sweeteners – try just ordering your drink nonfat and no whip – this will still cut calories without the risk of frying your brain.

9. Try an espresso con panna


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Commonly known as a doppio, this is less of a hack and just more of a fun experience. Essentially, this is two shots of espresso combined with whipped cream.

While using these tips may incite the hatred of your local Starbucks barista, hopefully they’ll help your wallet and your Starbucks experience. Go and perfect those orders.