I know, I might have to turn in my personal finance blogger card by writing about Starbucks AGAIN.
But truthfully, I've always been a fan of Starbucks. I mean, they have the best whipped cream EVER. How can you not like it? Yeah, some (all) of their drinks are ridiculously expensive. I definitely don't make it a daily habit.
During this past year (almost!) of self-employment, I fell even more in love with Starbucks. I had never really used it as a work location, but holy cow, it's great for me. Their wifi is usually awesome, I can normally find an open table, and I discovered the awesomeness of refillable iced coffees. Oh, and there's one that is exactly 7 minutes- walking!- from my front door.
I've also discovered some ways that you can get totally FREE Starbucks, and wanted to share those with you today! Any day that I can help you get free stuff is a successful day in my book :)
Step 1: Enroll in the Starbucks Rewards Program
The way to get free drankz from Starbucks lies with their Rewards program. To enroll, here's what you do:
- Buy a Starbucks gift card (even $5 will do)
- Register your card online
- Use that card for all your purchases (if you need to refill, Steve gave a great idea on my last post: check out those gift card swap sites and you might be able to find a Sbux card for 10-20% off!)
Step 2: Reap the Rewards
If you do absolutely NOTHING else besides enrolling your card (and making, like, 1 purchase a year?) you will get a coupon for a free drink on your birthday. And when I say "free drink", I mean a COMPLETELY FREE DRINK. ANY SIZE!!! Hellooo, completely free Venti frapp!
Once you make 5 purchases within a year, you earn enough points to become a "Green level" member. Green level gets you free refills on coffee/tea, which I love, and Gold level- which you achieve after making 30 purchases in a year- gets you a free drink after every 12 purchases. I haven't made enough purchases to get to the Gold level, but Green is pretty sweet for me!
Another awesome thing is getting random emails alerting you to Starbucks special deals. Normally these are useless to me (20% off sandwiches! 15% off coffee beans!) but occasionally you'll get notice of Half Priced Frapp Happy Hours (which I think are usually in May?), buy one get one free drink specials, and completely free drinks. It's awesome.
I got a random email this winter alerting me to a buy-one-get-one-free deal one day that week. We made it into a date :)
And of course we took advantage of the Frapp Happy Hour this spring a few times :)
So there you have it. Starbucks can definitely be expensive, but you can also get quite a few freebies by signing up for their programs and paying attention to your email!