As a self-confessed coffee addict, this is a subject close to my heart… how to afford the daily grind?

Buying one regular coffee these days costs approximately NZ $4.00 + per cup, and if, like me, one cup just won’t do the trick, you will find yourself easily spending $8 – $16 per day.

I can’t even suggest switching to decaf in order to save money and be more healthy – ironically, you pay 50 cents more per cup when the caffeine is removed!

If you work out the cost of this expenditure over a year it can be quite astounding – just 2 cups of coffee per day ($8), for 7 days a week, adds up to almost $3000 per annum! Wouldn’t it be great to have this amount of money available to you each year to help buy a car, reduce the mortgage or go on an overseas trip?

So here are some ideas, tips & strategies on how to save money on coffee:

  • Switch to a good quality instant coffee, for some or all of your hits;
  • Set goals to reduce the amount of coffee you drink;
  • Think about the benefits to your body of reducing your overall intake of caffeine — including a better sleep;
  • Give up coffee completely and switch to water, lemon flavoured slices in water, and healthy herbal teas;
  • Buy coffee from cheaper retail outlets – i.e. avoid expensive cafes or coffee bars (and those yummy but expensive muffins!) and make it your mission to seek out delicious coffee at places like service stations and less “trendy” outlets.

If, like me, you can’t imagine giving up coffee and you’re not prepared to switch to instant, then there are some less radical alternatives to consider:

At work – buy a small plunger and supermarket ground coffee, and keep them at work to reduce your work-day coffee expenses.

At home – invest in a coffee machine and make your own perfect espressos, lattes and cappuccinos at a fraction of café costs. If you buy a coffee machine on “special” from a retail store, then it will pay for itself in just a few months.

I have a friend who took her coffee savings to a whole new level – last year she decided to set up a direct debit of $35 week to a new account which she named her “Holiday Fund”. Next month she and her husband are off to the sunny Gold Coast on the proceeds!

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