Coffee is a drink that has transformed the world almost as much as tea. For millions of Americans it is part of our daily routine that gets us started and then powers us through the day. Unfortunately, as coffee has progressed from a relatively cheap and plain black drink and transformed into a gourmet beverage, it's gotten pretty expensive. From speciality coffee drinks to fancy machines in your home - those dollars add up ... but we have some ways that you can save money, while still savoring the delicious flavors and aromas.
Coffee has been around for centuries. There is much speculation about the origin of the drink, but most of us are glad that it exists!
One theory is that, coffee was first produced in Ethiopia, Eastern Africa. From this region it spread to other parts of the world. However, commercial cultivation of coffee started in the Middle Eastern Arab world around the 15th Century. As the popularity of coffee grew, it moved from a household item to social circles. Coffee houses then sprang up in ancient cities. European travellers to the region brought back coffee to their continent. Around the the 17th Century, coffee became very popular in Europe. The profit in coffee business soared in such a way that countries made it their domestic source of income. Even today, for many countries coffee exports represent a huge portion of their GDP. These include Ethiopia, where coffee production represents 60% of their total GPD! However, coffee production is a global endeavor today and that includes countries like Brazil, Vietnam, Columbia, and Indonesia representing the world's top producers.
Because of how global the coffee market is and the increasing demand, prices have continued to stay high. Not all is lost though, here's some ways to save money!
Use Cash To Make Your Purchases
This is an all around good tip to save money. Certain impulse purchases add up and it often is difficult to see what the difference is between a $3 cup and $7 cup when it all just goes on your card. By using cash, you'll be able to help monitor your spending patterns and allocate the money in a better way.
Do Your Research On Coffee Machines and Pods
While it's great to have the latest and greatest machine that some celebrity has endorsed, chances are that there are more cost effective solutions available too. One of the most important factors is to research the cost of coffee pods and if you are locked into just one manufacturer. Over the months and years of using your favorite machine, the initial cost of the coffee maker can become irrelevant since the cost of pods adds up quickly.
For example, Gourmesso pods www.gourmesso.com are available that work well with all nespresso machines. they are easy to carry and lightweight, so you could even carry your favorite flavors with you and use them in your hotel coffee machine. I'm starting to see more and more nespresso machines in hotels too, so you can skip the hotel coffee bar. Even if you are just using them at home though, making sure to look for alternatives to the standard pods is essential and can save hundreds of dollars per year.
Create Your Own Coffee Drinks At Home
While that super sweet iced coffee drink with caramel and whipped cream is a delicious summertime treat, you can make it easily at home too. Considering that the ingredients can be extremely cheap, it's just te labor and branding you are paying for at the store. So go and make the investment and buy a few different syrup flavors, and keep a can of whipped cream in the fridge ready to go. This is an opportunity for you to experiment and find some new concoctions that you like even better that what your local barista is offering. Plus ... it's fun to try new things!
If You Are Brewing At Home, Buy Whole Beans Instead of Ground Coffee Beans
Whole beans last longer and are cheaper to purchase - especially since you can buy them in bulk. Frankly, I think that the smell and fresh taste alone makes it worthwhile to do this ... but the cost savings are important too!