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The Smarter Way to Starbucks

Did you know that UCI’s on campus Starbucks is second nationally in sales among Starbucks on college campuses? Yea, I’m not surprised either judging by the twenty-minute long line I wait in every time I go there before class. Even more ridiculous than the long line, is the fact that I am willing to wait in that line instead of going somewhere else. I, like many of my fellow anteaters, love Starbucks. When I’m studying late or waking up early I don’t want your average cup of Joe: I crave Starbucks. Maybe I’ve been brainwashed by its fancy names or its inescapable advertisement everywhere I turn: regardless I just can’t get enough. My wallet on the other hand would beg to differ. Lately I have found myself going to Starbucks more and more often and as you would guess – spending more and more on coffee. It came to the point where I had to say to myself “ enough is enough you can’t order caramel Macchiatos (although incredibly delicious) three times a week…its just too expensive.” I’m sure I’m not the only one who deliberates whether or not to go to Starbucks or eat lunch. So I decided to contact my friends who work at Starbucks and have them give me some insider tips on how to save money at Starbucks. Here is a list of the tips they gave me:

1. Register your Starbucks card
 Just by registering your Starbucks card you are automatically entered to receive a free drink (any drink any size) on your birthday. Once you have five stars (aka have bought five drinks with that card) you advance to the green level which means you get free refills on coffee, iced coffee, or tea just as long as it’s during the same visit. You also get select complimentary syrup and milk choices (this is especially great if you like your drinks with soy milk because it’s free to substitute soy milk with this card). Registering your Starbucks card and reloading it is also a great way to manage how much money you are spending.

2. Order a Café Misto instead of a Latte
A Café Misto is Starbucks terminology for a Cafe au Lait. A Café Misto consists of half coffee half steamed milk and foam, basically a latte minus the espresso shots. A café misto is much cheaper than a latte and tastes the same!

3. Order a Short
If you don’t need that much caffeine to get you going or can never seem to finish all of your tall drink order a short! The short size isn’t shown on the menu but it is available if you ask for it. (The short size is only available for hot drinks)

4. Order your cup a size up (if you like a lot of cream or whipped cream in your drink)
If you like to get your Frappucino with extra whipped cream make sure to ask for a Tall in a Grande cup, a Grande in a Venti cup etc. The reason for this is that if you order a drink with extra whipped cream they will have to pour out some of that drink in order to make room for the extra whipped cream. The same applies to people that like a lot of cream in their coffee.

5. Bring your own mug
Help yourself and the environment. When you bring your own cup Starbucks will knock off ten cents from your total. 

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