Secret to Saving at Starbucks Coffee

Everyone loves a good cup of joe because offee is one of those things that we dare not give up and cannot live without day in and day out. Admittedly, coffee is definitely a big thing in our everyday lives: we love coffee the first thing in the morning as a pick me up (who doesn't love the smell of coffee as you're waking up), we love it with dessert, and we love having it in social gatherings. Whether you like Starbucks (see my post on the first Starbucks), Peet's, Phillz, Seattle's Best, McDonald's (hopefully you took advantage of their latest promotion), Dunkin' Donuts, or a simple mom and pop cafe, here are some tips that will help you save more money when ordering coffee. I hate to say it, but unless you're a coffee connoisseur, most people don't even know what they're drinking when they pay their local cafe a visit.

Starbucks Coffee Based in Seattle, WA
Starbucks Coffee (based in Seattle, WA)
If you need an extra kick in the morning or if you're interested in maximizing the amount of caffeine you're getting, make sure to order a light roast as opposed to a dark roast. Although dark roasted coffee beans (ie French roast, Italian roast) are roasted longer, they actually have less caffeine than light roasts (ie Java). Light roasts have more of their natural flavor whereas the oil in dark roasts start to surface and there is more of a chemical reaction in the roasting process that alters the bean's makeup and decreasing the amount of caffeine.

Peet's Coffee & Tea based in Berkeley, CA
Peet's Coffee & Tea (based in Berkeley, CA)
I know it's quite difficult to order a hot cup of coffee on a hot day, so the alternative is to just order an iced Frappuccino instead. Although Frappuccinos do taste great especially on a hot summer day, they are mostly made of ice and actually contain very little coffee. As a result, there is a huge profit margin for Frappuccinos. You just don't get as much bang for your buck when ordering a Frappuccino. You're almost better off ordering an iced tea.

Lastly, this last tip probably affects me the most. When I go to Starbucks, my "go to" drink is usually a cappuccino (equal parts espresso shot, milk, froth), but this applies to those people who like cappuccinos and/or lattes (espresso shot with more milk and less froth). When ordering a cappuccino or latte, don't bother ordering a large (or venti at Starbucks). When you order a large latte/cappuccino, all you get is extra steamed milk to fill in the extra volume for your larger cup. Unless you order a double espresso shot in your large (venti) latte/cappuccino, stick to the medium (or grande) size so that you don't get a diluted latte. You'll end up paying extra not for more coffee, but for more milk rather. And remember at Starbucks that the sizes from small to large is short, tall, grande, and venti. If you're like me, I tend to forget. Or you could do what a lot of people do: make your own cup of coffee at home. Nowadays, people have those single serve coffee machines made by Nespresso or Keurig.


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