We all love our freshly brewed coffee and perfectly made latte with extra foam from Starbucks, but we don’t love the costs. If you’re like me, who can’t resist getting at least two cups of coffee a day, you feel my pain every time you have to reach inside your wallet just for that great cup of coffee. After religiously venturing to Starbucks for my coffee for three years now, I have finally mastered how to hack the system and save money (and have my hot cup of Pike Place too). See, dreams do come true.
Here are my Starbucks Money Saving Hacks. You can thank me later (or buy me a cup of coffee, whatever your prefer).
Note: Sorry coffee lovers, these prices are subjected to be different based on your Starbucks location in the world; every coffee bean isn’t equal. These prices are also listed before tax is added.
When You’re Obsessed With Tea
You think it’s already the cheapest item on the menu, but, oh, it can be even cheaper than you thought. Starbucks tea is $2.24 (grande size, of course) while 1 box of Lipton Black Tea (100 teabags) on Amazon costs $2.99.
BYOTB (bring your own teabag!). By purchasing your own teabags, throwing some in your bag, and bringing them to Starbucks, it allows you to get more tea for your buck. Now you just need to ask for a cup of hot water. They don’t charge you for the water; they charge you for the cup. So, you’ll pay $0.25 for the cup.
Beat the system again by bringing a reusable cup. Now all you need to do is wait in line to get yourself a fresh cup of hot water… 100% free. Now that’s getting more tea for your buck.
When You Love Straight Up Coffee
Freshly brewed hot coffee (grande without syrup) costs $2.10. We all know that when you’re finished taking that last sip of coffee you will throw away your cup. We all also know that you’ll be back in line for another cup mid-afternoon because who actually has just one cup of coffee these days?
SAVE YOUR CUP! If you know you’re likely to go back later in the day for another cup of coffee, save your cup. A refill only costs $0.55 when you bring the cup back. But when you bring a Starbucks reusable cup from the start, you can get one cup of coffee for $0.55, and be ecofriendly all at the same time. Love the trees that grow your coffee beans.
When Lattes Are Your Jam
Chai lattes speak to me. The moment I step outside on a crisp fall day, I crave a chai latte, but what I don’t crave is the price. A grande chai is $3.95. Delicious fall inside a cup, but my bank account can’t handle it.
Go for a misto. A misto is a one to one ratio of freshly brewed hot coffee with your choice of any kind of steamed milk. Stir in a pack of sugar, add a sprinkle of cinnamon, and BOOM you have yourself a cheap ass latte, with a lot more caffeine in it, priced at $2.10. If you’re still missing that chai (or pumpkin) flavor, you can even add a pump of the syrup into it for $0.50 more.
When You Love Chocolate Frappuccinos
Just like lattes, these are huge money killers. Love the taste, but not the price.
If you love the taste of sweet gingerbread, or hazelnut, in the months where snow is starting to fall, just get a pump (or two…or three) of the gingerbread syrup in an iced cup of coffee for $3.15. Not only will your wallet love you for it, but so will your body (think: Fewer calories now, brownie or cookie for dessert later).
When You Love the Flavored Syrups
If you’re really trying to save money, even the smallest amount for your alcohol or travel abroad fund, skip out on the sweetened and flavored options in your drink.
Use their free add-in options. They don’t put endless amounts of sugar packets out on their mixing station for nothing! For a healthy alternative, ask for honey to sweeten up your drink (it’s free too)! Also, try their powered chocolate, cinnamon, and vanilla to add some flavor into your drinks without the prices (and calories) of the syrups!