Starbucks Has Introduced A 5p Charge For All Reusable Coffee Cups

It's a step in the right direction

Words by Megan C. Hills

It’s time to dig that old thermos out of the cupboard. Starbucks is doing its part to battle environmental waste by introducing a ‘latte levy’; basically, a 5p charge for using their disposable paper coffee cups.

The move is aimed to combat the incredible waste that coffee chains create, especially since an eye-watering 2.5 billion coffee cups are tossed in the bin each year. However, recycling them is a tough job as they tend to be lined with plastic to keep them from going soggy in your hand.

If you’re not in London, then you won’t be affected as Starbucks will be trialling the new coffee tax at just 35 branches in the capital for three months. They’ll be working with Hubbub, an environmental charity, to see if the charge actually encourages more people to change their habits and take it from there.

Starbucks Europe’s Simon Redfern said, ‘We’re hoping that this charge will remind to rethink their use of single-use plastic-lined cups, as it has with plastic bags.’

At the moment, Starbucks currently offers a discount to any customers who come with a reusable cup across all their branches and have done so for the past 20 years. They also sell a range of their own reusable homeware – those gorgeous glitter and rose gold Starbucks cups are forever burned into our memory. However, Simon revealed that ‘only 1.8 per cent of customers’ actually do so. After conducting a little survey, Starbucks revealed that 48% of people would actually carry a reusable cup.

Although it might be a little more hassle, given that literally millions of cups are tossed away every month – swapping to a reusable cup sounds like a good idea. Here’s a few cute options to keep you eco-friendly and super chic.

Rose Tinted Thermal Travel Mug

starbucks coffee cups

Rose Tinted Thermal Travel Mug, £14, Caroline Gardner

Buy now

Personalised Ceramic Eco Cup

reusable coffee cup

SerendipityVita Personalised Ceramic Eco Cup, £13.49, Etsy

Buy now

Paperchase Queen Ceramic Take Out Cup

starbucks coffee cups

Paperchase Queen Ceramic Take Out Cup, £12, Next

Buy now

KeepCup Reusable Glass Coffee Cup

starbucks coffee cups

KeepCup Cork Brew Reusable 8OZ Glas Coffee Cup, £19, John Lewis

Buy now

Mermaid Treasures Cup With Straw

starbucks coffee cups

Mermaid Treasures Drinks Cup With Straw, £7.50, sass & belle

Buy now

CHAZIA Steel Tumbler

starbucks coffee cups

CHAZIA Steel Tumbler, £23, Ted Baker

Buy now