Save a Latte on your Coffee Fix

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Posted on 09/24/2008

Admit it. You’re addicted. And because of the strong hold that latte has on your life, you’re probably unwilling to give up that $4 cup of joe. True, coffee can be a major drain on your budget, but there are ways to enjoy your caffeinated kick and not feel guilty about it.

Sign up for Starbucks Card Rewards
If Starbucks is one of your coffee stops, register a Starbucks gift card on their website. That simple step entitles you to lots of free perks including free in-house refills on brewed coffee, free syrup in some drinks, free beverage with a whole bean purchase AND up to two free hours of Wi-Fi every day.

Become a Barista
No, we’re not advising you to pick up a part-time position at the local coffee joint. (Although that may give you access to some free coffee.) We’re suggesting you set up your own at-home espresso shop. Paying a couple of hundred bucks for an espresso machine probably sounds extravagant to some, but it’ll probably pay for itself after a few months of diligent use.

Look for Coupons
Some coffee brands offer online coupons that you can use at the grocery store or on company websites. Caribou Coffee is taking 20% off merchandise orders placed by September 28 with the promo code http://www.starbucks.com/cardrewards/. Here is a coupon for $1 off Coffee-mate that you can use to spice up your coffee at home.

Try a Low-Cost Alternative
Like iced lattes? Doctor up a regular cup of house brew with a couple shots of syrup, milk and a little whip on top. The drink will save you at least $1, maybe more and it’s a nice change.

Split a Drink
Before using this next tip, ask your barista if it’s ok. Rather than ordering two tall vanilla lattes for you and your honey, try getting a venti split in two glasses. This saves a couple dollars and equals out to just about the same amount of coffee. This only works if you have a friend that likes the same drink (and if the barista says it’s ok.)

Make Nicey with the Staff
As I write this I am sipping a hot cup of coffee that was completely free. Although I have offered lots of tips on how to save big on your coffee fix, the one that often works best is just being nice. Chances are if you’re a regular customer—and friendly—you’ll be rewarded with freebies now and then.

By Alison Storm

* Hot deals expire quickly. This deal may no longer be valid.

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