I’ll admit that I look forward to my morning cup of coffee, and I know that I’m not alone.
Coffeehouses have been around for years, primarily started a place for business to be carried on, and news to be exchanged.
Today though, many of us grab our favourite cup of coffee to-go as we’re busy running off to work, or doing our weekend errands.
If you’ve been following Mint Notion for awhile, you’ll know that one of my tips for savings money is to brew your own cup of coffee at home.
However, I understand that sometimes it’s hard to give up this habit, and we’d rather pay a premium for our favourite cup of coffee, instead of brewing our own at home.
Who would have thought that people would be willing to pay a premium each month to drink coffee, when we all know that it’s cheaper and more economical to make coffee at home.
This convenience cost though can quickly add up, and it may be putting a dent in your wallet if you’re not careful with your spending.
Don’t worry though — it’s still possible to indulge in your morning cup of coffee while saving money.
Here are 10 ways to save money at the coffee shop.
1. Became a loyalty or rewards member
Many coffee shops offer reward programs for loyal guests, which means you can receive free drinks or special discounts.
This might seem like an obvious piece of advice, but you’d be surprise how many people don’t take advantage of becoming a loyalty or rewards member.
These reward programs are free to join and they are a great way to enjoy discounts and freebies just for being a loyal guest.
2. Order a small size
Instead of ordering a medium beverage each morning, switch to a smaller size.
If you’re not ready to give up ordering your favourite specialty drink, this works well, since ordering a smaller size saves you money, and you won’t have to miss out on your favourite beverage.
The savings will quickly add up over the month and your wallet and waistline will thank you too.
3. Visit the café only once per day (or less)
If you’re used to visiting the local café two or more times per day, try to cut down your visits in half. Chances are your office may have a kitchen or facilities to make your own coffee or tea, so take advantage of this perk.
If not, consider asking your boss if your office can order a kettle or coffee maker for everyone to share – it could lead to increased productivity in the workplace – hint hint!
If making your favourite beverage at the office is not a possibility, try brewing a cup at home to take to work and only visit the coffee shop once in the afternoon (instead of twice a day).
Related: 24 ways being lazy costs you money
4. Bring your own mug or tumbler
Many coffee shops, such as Starbucks, offer a discount to guests who bring their own mug or tumbler. The savings might seem small, but over the period of a month – it adds up to a free cup of coffee (or 12 free coffees per year).
Plus, it’s a great way to help the environment by reducing unnecessary waste. Being green while saving money never felt so good!
Related: 25 ways to save money by going green
5. Sign up to their email list
If your favourite coffee shop has an email list, do yourself and favor and sign up! Chances are you’ll receive exclusive offers or discounts, only available to those who subscribe to their list.
If you live or work close to a number of different coffee shops, don’t be afraid to subscribe to all of their email lists – that way you’ll know when each spot is offering a special promotion or discount.
6. Skip the pricey specialty drinks and create your own
If a medium latte is your go-to drink, you’ll know that it can quickly put a dent in your wallet. Instead if you frequently go to Starbucks, order a café Misto, which is coffee with steamed milk.
Another alternative is to order an Americano, which is more expensive than a regular cup of coffee, but still more affordable than a latte. Be creative while saving money.
Related: 55 real ways you can save money now
7. Find deals and coupons online
Follow your favourite coffee shops on social media (Facebook and Twitter) to find out when they are offering special promotions or deals.
Sometimes the deals are only advertised online, so it’s worth your while to keep an eye on their social media accounts.
Check deal websites like Groupon to find coupon codes, discount gift cards or 2 for 1 offers.
Sometimes you can also find discount gift cards available on Craigslist or Kijiji for coffee shops like Starbucks.
8. Add flavour to your coffee for free
Instead of paying for extra pumps or shots of flavour, head over the counter where you can spice up your coffee for free.
Top your beverage with vanilla, cinnamon, cocoa, or experiment with other flavourings. You might discover something you love more than your usual beverage choice and it’s cost-effective too.
9. Visit during “free coffee week” or “happy hour”
Sometimes coffee shops or restaurants offer “free coffee week”, such as McDonalds, where guests can receive a free small coffee. This is a great deal if you enjoy a regular cup of coffee since it doesn’t cost you anything.
Some shops also have “happy hour” promotions in the afternoon, such as Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts, where guests can grab their favourite beverage at a discount price.
These discounts may not be offered every day, so it’s important to follow your favourite coffee shops on social media (or via email) so you’ll know when they are happening.
10. Split a large drink with a friend (or co-worker)
If you and a friend both love the same beverage, consider splitting the cost by ordering a large size and asking for an extra cup.
Usually one large beverage will equal two small drinks, which you can share with your friend or co-worker. This will help you both save a few dollars while still enjoying the drink you love.
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Over to you — how do you save money at the coffee shop?
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