How can you stop going to coffee shops so often?

That’s a great question, and one that coffee shop corporations like Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts don’t want you to know the answer to.

While coffee shops can be great, they can also be a black hole for our money. $3 a day really adds up, especially when you include the opportunity cost of investing that money instead.

The sad thing is, even though everyone knows how expensive buying coffee on a daily basis is, we still do it.

Why? Because one, coffee is amazing, but it’s also addictive.

Not only that, but coffee shops and corporations have made it so easy for us to buy coffee now. It’s almost easier to pick up a coffee on the way to work as opposed to making it ourselves!

But here’s the problem, if you can’t stop going to coffee shops on a regular basis, you’ll consistently overpay for something, and that’s just unnecessary.

6 Tips to Help You Avoid Coffee Shops

Buying $3 coffees 5 days a week for a full year equates to $780. If you invested $780 at age 20 and averaged a 8% return until you retired at 65, your $780 would now be $28,207. That equates to $108 a coffee!!

Okay, I know sensible people don’t think like that, but when you really look at the opportunity cost of going to a coffee shop on a daily basis, it’s quite astounding.

For these reasons, I thought it would be a good idea to share with you 6 tips I’ve used to stop going to coffee shops so frequently.

Here are 6 tips to help you avoid coffee shops:

  1. Make your own Coffee

  2. Remove Apple Pay from your Phone

  3. Buy a Travel Mug 

  4. Don’t Keep Change in Your Car

  5. Take Advantage of Free Coffee

  6. Physically Avoid Them

Spending money at coffee shops on occasion is perfectly normal, and it’s really not a problem. But going to coffee shops everyday or even a few times a week is just unnecessary.

Hopefully these 6 tips will help you as much as they’ve help me. Enjoy!

Make your Own Coffee

Making your own coffee is the most obvious solution for those who want to avoid coffee shops. I’m not foolish enough to suggest you should stop drinking coffee all together, that would just be irresponsible and rude!

But if you’re the type of person who likes two cups of coffee every morning, decide that you’re going to make your own coffee each morning. You can get quality coffee makers very inexpensively these days.

6 Tips to Help You Avoid Coffee Shops

According to Business Insider, making a cup of coffee at home costs between 16-18 cents. how much you’re over paying for something that you can make at home.

If you’re able to get your coffee fix each morning before you leave the house, you won’t be as tempted to pick up a coffee en route to your destination.

The other great thing about making coffee at home is that you can customize it just for your liking. Once this happens, coffee shops won’t stand a chance of getting your business.

Better coffee at a cheaper price, all from the comfort of your home. Bye Starbucks.

Remove Apple Pay from your Phone

As if buying coffee couldn’t get any easier, iPhones have now made it even easier with their Apple Pay feature.

Even if you leave your wallet at home, you can still go to a coffee shop if you’ve setup Apple Pay.

Google Pay is another similar feature that Androids offer, but it’s all the same when it comes to ease of purchase.

These payment features are dangerous and will almost certainly lead to you overindulging at coffee shops.

When you don’t have to take out your wallet to pay for something, you don’t activate the pain centers of the brain that trigger when you buy something with cash. The less painful it is to spend money, the more you’ll spend.

If you don’t believe me, take out cash next time you want to make a big purchase and see how it feels leaving your hand.

Buy a Travel Mug

If you want to stop going to coffee shops everyday, buy a travel mug and fill it up with your own coffee.

6 Tips to Help You Avoid Coffee Shops

Think about it, would you really be tempted to go into a coffee shop if you already had a coffee with you? Probably not.

Travel mugs have really taken off recently and there are a lot of trendy looking ones in the market today. Not only that, but they are also reusable which is great for the planet.

If you don’t already have a travel mug, I highly recommend buying one. Help save the world while saving your money.

Don’t Keep Spare Change in Your Car

If you really want to stop going to coffee shops so often, you have to purposely create friction for yourself.

The more hassle it is to do something, the less likely you are to do it.  So with that being said, avoid keeping spare change in your car.

Pft! I’m not going through all that effort of taking my wallet out. I’ve literally thought that before and not bought coffee because of it. Sounds silly, but it’s true.

People often rationalize with themselves by saying they want to get rid of some spare change so they buy a $2-$3 coffee. Avoid this!

Again, try and create friction in the buying process. While it might sound silly, having spare change in your car will actually play huge a factor in you making a pit stop at a coffee shop or not.

Take Advantage of Free Coffee

Once you buy a travel mug, take advantage of free coffee throughout the day if possible.  I understand not everyone will have this luxury, but if you do, take advantage of it.

Whether it’s in an office, student council room, library or hotel lobby, free coffee is a great way to stop you from going to a coffee shop and spending money.

How to Stop Going to Coffee Shops

The one downside of free coffee is that it might not be up to your qualitative standards. But hey, it’s free! And in my opinion, a bad cup of coffee is better than no cup at all.

Physically Avoid Coffee Shops

In another Financial Geek Article, 4 Tips to Help You Stop Spending Money on Fast Food, we talk about how physically avoiding fast food restaurants is a great way to stop spending money at them.

This is also a great tip if you want to avoid spending money at coffee shops.

Think about how many times you’ve passed by a coffee shop and at the last minute decided to pull in for a coffee.

You never wanted a coffee before you saw the shop, but you see, coffee shop owners are smart. They make sure the coffee can be smelt outside the shop and they ensure their logo is distinctly shown on all angles of the street.

To put in bluntly, they do everything they can to trigger your coffee addiction. That’s marketing for you.

With coffee shops seemingly on every street corner these days, this is easier said than done.

But think about the routes you take to work or school each day, are there different ways you can go to avoid passing coffee shops? If so, consider taking them instead. As they say, out of sight out of mind.


Going for a coffee has become a national pastime for a lot of people.

Unfortunately, coffee isn’t free (usually) and people find themselves spending hundreds of dollars per month at places like Starbucks, Tim Hortons and Dunkin Donuts.

But how does one stop going to coffee shops so frequently?

The answer is not as easy as “just not going” because coffee is addictive and coffee shops make purchasing coffee so easy these days. It’s really a perfect storm.

If you find yourself struggling to avoid coffee shops, follow some of these simple tips and save more of your money and more of your time.

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