Face it, your coffee habit is expensive. The daily trips to the coffee shop really add up when you actually run the numbers. Not convinced? If you go to Starbucks everyday, you probably spend between $50-$80 per month on coffee, and doesn’t include the coffee you make at home. Since most of us can’t go a day without our dark master, here’s a list of cool tricks to bring your coffee bill substantially down.
Make Your Own Concoction: Here’s a fun tip. If you can’t go without your daily trip to the coffee shop, try bringing a friend. Then simply order a regular coffee and go wild at the condiment station. Experiment with different types of milk, cream, and sugar until you create a drink that you really like. For example, you can get a regular espresso and add milk to create your own latte. Or you could order an iced coffee and add your own flavored syrup. You probably will have to do this a few times to get the flavors right, but if you’re with a friend it could be fun to compare drinks.
Consider Gift Cards: Buying gift cards directly from the retailers won’t save you money, but what if you look for second-hand gift cards? This creative solution could save you quite a bit of money. I mean, you already scour sites like Craigslist for deals on furniture, electronics, and books anyways, don’t you? Why not look for used and unwanted gift cards? Often times there will be enough of a balance for a few cups of coffee. You might even find gift cards for other large retailers. It’s kind of hit or miss, but that’s ok. You’ll probably find something good every once in a while.
Pricey Isn’t Better: Lots of taste tests have proven that expensive coffee shops rank below less expensive ones. For example, New York Magazine did a taste test of various coffee companies, and Dunkin Donuts actually fared higher than Starbucks. Does this mean you should give up Starbucks in favor of DD? Not necessarily. But it does show that you can save lots of money by buying Starbucks whole beans and grinding them yourself at home. If you decide to buy DD beans and brew your coffee at home, you could save over $1,100 per year when compared to buying coffee at the cafe. That’s quite a bit of savings, don’t you think?
Recycle Coffee Grounds: There are tons of great ways to recycle your coffee grounds. These tips will save you money around the house. You can use coffee grounds in your garden. The heavy nitrogen content will keep away feral cats that may use your garden as a litter box. The nitrogen also burns ants legs, so it’s a good natural insecticide. You can also use the coffee grounds as a deodorizer in your freezer.
Make It Spicy: If you like flavored coffee, you can add liquid extracts like vanilla to your coffee. You can also try grinding spices like cinnamon, cloves, vanilla, nuts, etc. into your whole coffee beans.
Natural Energy: If you just drink coffee for the caffeine, there are much better ways to get energy. For one, regular exercise, especially in the morning will help you feel more energetic throughout the day. Eating fresh fruits is another great way to get energy. Apples produce as much (if not more) energy than a cup of coffee. Drinking plenty of water is yet another way to feel more peppy throughout the day. So if you just drink coffee for the caffeine fix, you have plenty of great options.
So here are 6 cool ways to save more money on coffee. If you follow them, you could well save up to $1000 per year on coffee. What other things do you do to save money on your coffee habit? Feel free to share your suggestions in the comments.