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Clever Spender: Starbucks Hacks To Save You Cash


November 22, 2020

It’s safe to say with the endless choices on the menu and the secret menu – yes, there’s a secret menu, we’re all suckers for some good Starbucks hacks to save us a bit of money.

Heading off to Starbucks at any time of day, either ordering our usual or trying out one of the secret menu choices, really makes our day. Not only do our taste buds dance with joy at the burst of new flavors, but we also get to take a pretty picture for Instagram.  

These ten hacks will have you leveling up your order game, so you don’t feel judged for ordering the same thing over and over again, it will help you save some coins at the same time, and if you’re new to Starbucks, you’ll feel more comfortable knowing these easy tips. 

1. Is There Really A Secret Menu?

Yes, there is! The secret menu does exist, with more than 200 recipes, which means every new order can be an adventure for your palette. Ordering right off the menu can add up, and you can go off your budget very quickly.

So with this hack, you can come up with a recipe either from the secret menu or your own concoction, and it can cost less than $4. You can check out the secret menu here (brace yourself; there are many options).

2. Have You Signed Up For Rewards Yet?

I love reward programs, anything to save a few coins, sign me up now, especially if they’re free! If you want to save extra money and make use of all the deals Starbucks offers, you can sign up for the Starbucks Rewards Program.

This program works with a ‘Star’ system. The more stars you gain, you can cash them in for drinks – a significant perk. 

3. Bring Your Own Cup And Straw.

Not only will you be saving the environment by making the eco-friendly decision of reusing your own cup and straw, but this can save you money since you won’t be purchasing a new cup every time you order.

Now, if you’re wondering how you’re going to take your Instagram-worthy Starbucks picture, well, there’s no need to stress yourself one bit because Starbucks sells reusable cups. These reusable cups can look like the original packaging, or you can invest in seasonal cups.

4. In A Rush And Want To Beat The Line?

No, don’t skip the line, you’ll get major side-eye from everyone, and someone will confront you. However, if you’re in a rush and don’t have time to stand in line, a quick way to get your order is to place the order through the Starbucks Mobile App. Bye-bye waiting in line. 

5. Don’t Buy Water!

Okay, hear me out, so it costs $3 for a water bottle at Starbucks, but a way to save money is actually to order a Venti iced water, saving you a little over $2. We all have those moments when we're thirsty and we need water, but this hack is a great way to save some coins and get a refreshment.

Another eco-friendly tip to this water hack is if you can bring your reusable cup and ask for Starbucks to fill it with water and ice, they will and it's for free, talk about a major save.

6. French Press Pot Hack 

It’s safe to say that sometimes we head over to Starbucks with our friends for some chill time and to get our dose of caffeine, so a way to save money is by using the French press pot hack. What is the French press pot hack, you may ask?

Well, this is when you order a French Press pot of coffee instead of everyone buying their own cups of coffee. Each pot serves a few cups of coffee, and this will be cheaper than buying individually.

7. Did you know you can get samples at Starbucks?

I don’t know about you, but I had no idea Starbucks offered samples. To me, this changes the game because now you won’t have to keep ordering the same thing over and over again, and you won’t risk getting a drink that you don’t end up liking.

Unless they’re busy, the barista should be fine getting you a sample of a specific brew or drink if you’re on the fence about liking it or not.

8. How To Hack Your Ice Drinks.

A way to hack your ice drink is to ask for “light ice” (you can avoid this if you like a lot of ice), this is because the ice is usually filled up more than necessary to keep the drink cold, but this limits the space the barista can fill the cup up with your favorite tea or coffee.

Having light ice will ensure you get more for your money because you’ll have more of your drink, and it will still stay chilled.  When it comes to ordering your ice tea, ask for “no water” because iced teas are typically watered down, and if you order no water, it will be a stronger brew, and it won’t taste watered down.


9. What Size Drink Should You Order?

If you’re like me and the sizes confuse you, it can lead you to spend more money if you order a size bigger than you actually would want. For example, you may think a Tall, which is 12oz, is the smallest option at Starbucks, but no, it isn’t.

The “Short” size is the 8oz option, which is a perfect cappuccino size. Not only is the Short size around 30c cheaper, but it’s a much stronger brew; this is because baristas add less milk to Short drinks, yet the caffeine in both the Tall and Short is the same. 

10. Want To Replace Your Cold Brew With A Latte?

Starbucks’ cold brews are often quite strong. If you order one Grande (16oz) cold brew, you can turn it into two separate iced lattes. The cold brew can be divided into two individual same sized cups, next adding milk to each cup, and now you will have two Grande iced lattes. Typically priced at $2.65 each, this hack will save you $2.05.