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How to save money on your coffee – and do your bit for the environment

disposable coffee cup
Chloe Best
Lifestyle Features Editor
April 11, 2017
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Want to save money on your morning caffeine fix while also helping the environment? Bakery group Paul and Pret-a-Manger are the latest food chains to offer a discount for customers who bring their own reusable cup to stores, in a bid to cut down on the amount of waste created from disposable coffee cups in the UK.

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The move coincides with UK Coffee Week and at a time when our takeaway coffee habit has hit an all-time high; some 2.5 billion disposable coffee cups are used each year in the UK, creating an estimated 25,000 tonnes of waste.

coffee shop© Photo: iStock

Many coffee shops are offering discounts to customers who bring reusable cups

French bakery group Paul launched its Paul Cares policy from 10 April, which offers a 10p discount on your coffee if you bring a reusable cup to any of its 35 stores across the UK. Paul will also be selling their own branded reusable cups for £3.50 if you don't already own one but want your coffee run to be more environmentally friendly. Meanwhile Pret is currently trialling a scheme in its London branches that offers 25p off any hot drink ordered with a reusable cup. If it goes well, the scheme may be rolled out at its 350 stores around the globe.

disposable coffee cup© Photo: iStock

Some 2.5 billion disposable coffee cups are used each year in the UK

They are following in the footsteps of other prominent coffee chains including Starbucks and Costa, who both offer a 25p discount on any drink purchased with a reusable tumbler or cup. Over 2,000 Costa branches now also recover and recycle any paper takeaway cup left or returned in store – including those of its competitors – with the aim of recycling over 30 million takeaway cups each year.

Although Caffè Nero is yet to introduce a discount on drinks in reusable cups, you can get two loyalty card stamps rather than just one. This means you get a free coffee after every five coffees purchased rather than every ten in disposable cups.

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