Everyone loves Starbucks Coffee including myself. I also love going to Jamba Juice as well. These
two trendy locations can quickly eat up your hard earned savings. If you are saving for a down payment
or other large savings goal, I highly recommend cutting back on your Starbucks, Jamba Juice, and
other recurring luxuries in life to save some substantial extra money. It is saving me personally
$650 dollars per year.
How I'm Saving $650 Per Year
I used to go to either Jamba Juice or Starbucks in the morning before work every weekday. I mostly
went to Jamba Juice but am calling out Starbucks in the article because this is much more familiar
to most people. Both are comparable in cost so the same savings will hold. There are 52 weeks
per year and 5 weekdays per week. That is 260 workdays per year. 260 x $5 per Jamba
Juice or Starbucks = $1,300 in luxury beverage costs per
year. Now, I only go to Jamba Juice or Starbucks every other day. Dividing $1,300 in half, I am
saving a respectable $650 per year. That is some serious savings that will really help toward my
down payment. I still get hungry in the morning so what do I do? I found the perfect money saving
free food at my office which is not as good as Jamba Juice but definitely worth it when I
factor in the huge savings. Moreover, now when I go to Jamba Juice or Starbucks it's a treat and I
enjoy it more than ever.
Why Not Buy Your Own Espresso Machine?
The Consumerist explains how you can save a ton of money by
your own espresso machine instead of going to Starbucks. I think this is great advice.
Philosophically, I usually prefer buying instead of renting if you are going to be doing something
for an extended period of time. For example, I used to rent the furniture in my apartment because
I did not know how long I would be in my current city. After deciding to stay for the long haul,
it was obvious that I should buy my own furniture because the cost was only one year's worth of
renting fees. Similarly, you can pay off your espresso machine after probably just a few week's
worth of missed Starbucks coffees. If you like your smoothie in the morning like myself, why not
buy a blender and fruit? It could actually turn into a fun hobby. Taking this analogy one step further,
it's the whole reason for this website. We all deserve to own our own house because over the long term
owning a home is better than renting. You will be able to live in a nicer place than your
apartment and moreover you will grow your wealth through ownership of an appreciating asset
that is a great hedge against inflation. The reason you want a high down payment is to minimize
the interest you pay over time which amplifies your gains from owning your own home even further.
Skip the Muffin or Cookie For Extra Savings
Let's now look at a compromise. An important part of my savings strategy is breaking the rules
to improve lifestyle in addition to saving so the journey is as much fun as the goal. If you cannot
live without your Starbucks, I say to go for it. You want to happy. However, how about a
compromise? When I go to Starbucks, I always end up getting a cookie or muffin in addition to my
coffee. At Jamba Juice, I always get their apple cinnamon pretzel. Why not just get the coffee and
pass on the extras? This is a great way to cut your expenses down a lot while still enjoying your
daily cup of coffee.
Look For Coupons & Discounts
One great way to save is to keep your eye out for coupons. Whenever Jamba Juice or Starbucks are
running a special, make sure to take them up on it. Most recently, in their effort to push the
new "enlightened" smoothies, Jamba Juice has offered coupons where you get a free smoothie
if you come with a friend and buy one enlightened smoothie. Now
that's like getting
a carpool buddy for smoothies.
Watch Out For Caffeine & Improve Your Health
Besides saving more money and growing your bank account, there are also health benefits to cutting
back on Starbucks. Caffeine is not good for you, especially if you consume too much and are reliant
on it to get you through the day. It masks your real need to get some quality sleep (believe me,
I know from personal experience). Why not save
more money, get more sleep, and improve your overall health? That's triple savings! For additional
information on health benefits, you may want to check out
Wikipedia's article on caffeine.