With all of us tightening our wallets in a time where savings have taken even more space in our thoughts, let’s start with our morning coffee:) Who doesn’t like a good cup of coffee to start the morning with? Or in fact at any time of the day? There is something therapeutic about walking to your favorite café and walking out with a nice steaming cuppa joe. But we are all in a mode of budgeting at the moment ! Just go the maths quickly – two coffees a day at 16 AED each at 20 working days accumulates to 640 AED a month and 7,680 AED per year ! That could pay for two car insurance policies or even get you 2 economy tickets to Europe and back !!

However, coffee IS expensive. But it shouldn’t have to cost you a whole lot. We’ve shortlisted a few tried and tested hacks that will help you savor every last bit of your favorite beverage while saving money in the long run! So take a leap of faith and try these out…

Buy a loyalty card

If you go to a place one too many times, they are bound to know you are a loyal customer. Various cafes offer discounts to regular customers. The easiest way to cash these is going for a loyalty card. Sometimes, on 5-7 cups of coffee, you get one additional cup free. You’ll find that most big chains like Starbucks, Caffe Nero and London Dairy, as well as some smaller independent cafés offer such loyalty cards. And it doesn’t cost anything to enroll. 

[Related: 7 Life hacks that will save you big bucks]

Get small in a large cup

It is human tendency to fill in the glass that is in front of us. Play on this and, at the risk of sounding awkward, get your small coffee (Without milk) in a large cup. More often than not, the barista is likely to give you more than you asked for. You can simply pour your milk at the table. A good secret tip for saving more money!

Bring your cup to the party, literally

Good cafes will fill your cup with java, no matter the tumbler or the glass you are carrying. And logistically speaking, although they charge you for the standard amount of coffee, they may still give you more ounces than what you paid for. A lot of coffee shops also give you a discount if you carry your own reusable cup in a bid to help the environment. 

[Related: ‘No Spend Days’ – Does this new budgeting fad work?]

Avoid buying snacks at the checkout

As if your coffee bills weren’t high enough! We get it – You’re about to pay for your coffee, and spot a yummy-looking chocolate chip cookie or granola bar. You pick it up impulsively and end up doubling your bill. Now you could have avoided the temptation if you got a pre-packed breakfast from home or ate before ordering your coffee.

Sharing is caring… and cheap too

At many places, the tall cup is cheaper than the small ones, to make you want more for less money. Like the ‘Venti’ cup size at Starbucks is 590 ml and is cheaper than buying two 350 ml ‘Tall’ cups. So get a large and split it with a friend, and enjoy the awesomeness of coffee without shelling extra bucks.

[Related: 7 extreme DIY alternatives that will save you thousands]

Caffeine addicts, budget your drinks

For all habitual java drinkers, it is easy to go overboard with your morning shot of espresso. Make a budget and stick to it. Try not to go overboard with the expenditure. Budgeting will not only help you save money, it will also keep your caffeine addiction in check.

You know what’s the cheapest way? Brew your own beverage!

If there was ever a time to become a barista, it is now. Save some serious cash by brewing your morning beverage at home. A gadget as simple as a French press will do wonders in helping you make an espresso shot. Simply buy roasted coffee beans from the market and grind them and become your own barista.

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