Most of us think of coffee as a minor yet necessary expense. For those of us who start our mornings with coffee, there is no substitute for that delicious coffee flavor and jolt of caffeine fueled energy.
But even as we fuel our careers with coffee, our coffee habits are undermining our financial wellbeing. What seems like a small expense can really add up! That’s why it’s so important that we find sensible ways to save on coffee.
Your coffee habit may be costing you more than you think
How much would you spend on a cup of coffee? If you’re like many Americans, you’ll spend around two dollars and change — the price of a small coffee at a typical chain. In fact, you might even spend more. Plenty of us choose medium or large coffees, and some of us patronize hip local coffee shops that charge premiums for their high-end coffee and fancy atmospheres.
A few bucks isn’t the end of the world, of course, but there’s a good chance you’re buying these coffees every single day. You may even be buying more than one. Assuming you spend around $3 on coffee every day, you’re spending $1,095 per year on coffee purchases alone.
A thousand dollars or more is too much to spend on coffee. Here’s how to cut back.
Brew your coffee at home
The coffee shop may be a nice place to pass the time while you read or work on a project, but it should not be your go-to for daily coffee errands. A chain like Starbucks charges a few bucks for a coffee, while boutique shops may charge even more. Meanwhile, you can get a coffee for just $1 a fast food joint — or, better yet, you could brew your own coffee at home.
Brewing coffee at home can result in cups of coffee that cost as little as 16 cents per cup. You’ll be saving somewhere in the neighborhood to $2.84 per day which comes up to a total of more than a thousand dollars a year.
And don’t think for a moment that you have to give up your high-end coffee experience in order to brew at home: in fact, you can invest in fancy coffee beans, opt for whole bean coffee and grind those beans fresh yourself, and try brewing methods like the French press to get a really exquisite coffee experience that feels at least as fancy as the one you’d get at the coffee shop.
Waste not, want not
Wasting coffee means wasting money! You can save on coffee by being smarter about the ways in which you consume it. Be more mindful of how much you’re actually drinking, and you’ll get more bang for your buck.
In coffee shops, consider opting for a reusable coffee cup, as some chains and local shops will fill it up at a discount. And don’t be lured in by larger and larger sizes. While they’re not always much more expensive, you’ll be wasting money if you get more than you need.
At home, track how much you drink so that you don’t make more than that amount. And if you do make a little extra, why not toss it into a pitcher and stick it in the fridge? You could drink it as iced coffee tomorrow, or you could fill ice cube trays with it to create coffee ice cubes that won’t water down your next batch of iced coffee.
Shop smart for coffee
You’ll maximize your home brew savings, of course, if you buy your coffee beans or grounds in bulk. For those who don’t mind the taste of the big-brand coffees that come in tins and tubs, this can be a good cost-saving measure. But keep in mind that your major savings come from brewing at home in the first place, so you have some breathing room to splurge on grounds and beans! Besides, there is at least one other really cost-effective way to get coffee at home.
Another great way to save on coffee is to get yourself a good coffee supplier. There are coffee subscription box services out there that will ensure that you get a fresh batch of coffee beans or grounds delivered regularly, meaning that you’ll never have to worry about forgetting to buy your coffee. And these sorts of delivery options can be extremely cost-effective, allowing you to enjoy your high-end coffee without such a high-end price tag.