Coffee the Frugal Way
I have been an avid coffee drinker my entire adult life. I love it first thing in the morning, hot, full-bodied and with just a hint of sweetness. Years ago, before my frugal journey began, I regularly purchased coffee and specialty coffee drinks at Starbucks. Giving up this not-so-frugal habit was not easy, but I did it. Now, I still appreciate my coffee at home, with an occasional coffee shop splurge.
I have discovered ways to save money on my morning ritual out of necessity. Our home is never without a fresh pot in the morning. Here are some ways to enjoy coffee, the frugal way:
Use coupons. There are often coupons available for coffee products in your Sunday paper or online, including Folgers, Melitta, Community and more. Search my Coupon Database for "coffee" to find current coupons.
Invest in a permanent filter. Instead of paper filters for your coffee pot, use a filter basket that you simply rinse and reuse each day. Better for the environment AND your pocketbook.
Buy in bulk. If you go through a lot of coffee, buying in bulk makes sense. Costco and other warehouse stores offer huge bags of coffee beans, ground or not for your drinking pleasure. Do the same for sweeteners and other coffee enhancers.
Use real milk or cream. Many coffee drinkers use non-dairy creamer substitutes, which not only adds extra cost to your caffeine habit, but is not a healthy option. Learn to appreciate the same milk or cream you already have in your frigde for your morning cup.
Invest in a good travel mug. If you commute or are on the go in the morning, it is all too tempting to swing by the nearest coffee shop for a quick fix. Keep an insulated mug on hand for the morning rush, and avoid the temptation altogether.
Drink less. This may seem obvious, of course, but drinking just one cup of coffee per day instead of 2 or 3 can cut your yearly java costs in half or more. I noticed when I cut back to one cup that I appreciate my hot steaming mug so much more in the morning. I truly savor it now, instead of gulping it down.
These small savings can really add up over time. If you still crave that Frappucino treat occasionally, you can indulge by earning free $10 Starbucks Gift Cards through Swag Bucks. Save those digital bucks and cash them in for coffee rewards!