"hand crafted paper cups" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by skinnydiver
Ah, coffee – where would we be without you?
Given its gorgeous aroma, taste and well-known ability to provide a mid-morning pick-me-up, it’s no surprise that people from all corners of the globe have adopted coffee as a key staple of their daily ritual. Nowhere is the popularity of coffee more widespread than in the United States, where more than half of all Americans admit to drinking at least three cups of coffee every single day.
But the cost of our daily caffeine habit can soon start to rack up, particularly for the coffee shop junkies among us who love nothing more than picking up a fresh cup from their local barista. According to a global study published by Couponbox, the average cost of a Starbucks coffee can cost as much as $5.92 in some major cities. Luckily for any New Yorkers out there, the average price comes in at just under $3 – but that’s still a sizeable amount per cup, particularly over the course of weeks, months and years.That’s why we’re here to run through some of the best alternative options for those coffee drinkers out there who are looking to cut back on their daily caffeine spend.
Invest In Your Own Coffee-Maker (And Thermos Flask!)
Instead of spending your hard-earned dollars day after day at the local coffee shop, a far less expensive option is to become your own barista. You can pick up a decent quality coffee-maker (or cafetiere) at a fairly cheap price these days – probably no more than $20 for one that’s a fairly good size. A 1lb bag of ground coffee will set you back approximately $10 on average, but with that, you’re guaranteed to get 50 cups of quality coffee, at least!
If you prefer to have two or three cups of coffee throughout the day, then you should seriously consider a thermos flask too. This allows you to brew a large pot of coffee in the morning and take the rest with you to work, ready to enjoy at any time, anywhere.
Don’t Just Go For The Grande
Okay, so we know how difficult it is to pass by your favourite coffee joint and not occasionally nip in for a steaming hot cup of goodness. You’re a loyal fan, after all, so every now and again is completely justified. Most coffee drinkers are creatures of habit, and most will also have their preferred style and size of coffee ready to order straight off the tip of their tongue as soon as they enter their local cafe. It might sound simple, but getting out of the habit of always ordering a large cup of java will really pay off down the line.
If you’ve always ordered a large then you may be surprised to find that going down a size, or even splitting a cup with a friend, isn’t that big of a deal after all. More importantly, it’ll save you plenty of cents in the long run!
Reuse Your Takeout Cups
This is a great little tip that surprisingly not many people seem to know about.
Many local coffee shops and bigger chains actually offer a slight discount to customers who bring in a previously used takeout cup, or even their own favourite mug from home. Sure, the savings are only $0.10 or so at a time, but that all adds up over time… and will eventually lead to a free cup of coffee!
Not only that, you’re also helping the environment if you choose to reuse a take-out cup that you were previously given. Being green while sipping your favourite drink and saving money, what could be better than that?