You can now bring your own reusable cup to the Starbucks drive thru

ConsumerAffairs

The coffee chain is the first retailer to accept customers’ cups for mobile and drive thru orders

Starbucks has announced that consumers can start using their own reusable cups at U.S. locations – regardless of how they order. 

This means that whether you want to stop into a store, order at the drive thru, or do a mobile order, you can bring your own reusable cup. 

“At Starbucks, we envision a future where every beverage can be served in a reusable cup,” said Michael Kobori, chief sustainability officer at Starbucks. “Offering customers more options to use a personal cup when they visit Starbucks marks tangible progress towards the future. We know our customers are passionate about the planet, and now they can join us in our efforts to give more than we take, no matter how they order.” 

How it works

With the announcement, Starbucks became the first coffee retailer in the U.S. to offer consumers the option of getting their drinks in their reusable cups for both mobile orders and drive-thrus. 

Here’s how it works: 

  • Customers order their drinks as they normally would, and inform the barista – whether in person or in the drive thru – that they would like to use their own cup. For those ordering in the app, there will be an option to select “Personal Cup” under the Customization menu. Regardless of how customers order, they will still need to choose a traditional Starbucks size – tall, grande, venti, or trenta. 

  • If ordering in-store, customers will hand over their clean, personal cups, without the lids. Baristas will make the drinks in new customized drinkware that has lines and measurements to match the size that customers have ordered. 

  • A similar process will happen if customers order at the drive-thru or on the Starbucks mobile app. When customers arrive at the drive-thru window or at their Starbucks store for pickup, they hand off their clean cup without the lid, to the barista, who will make the handoff. 

  • To keep things sanitary, baristas will hand off the reusable cups in a contactless vessel. 

Cups must be clean

Starbucks emphasized that cups must be clean when customers opt to use their own cups. Baristas won’t be able to rinse or wash out any reusable cups. 

There are also benefits for customers who bring reusable cups. Starbucks rewards members will receive an extra 25 Stars to their rewards accounts and $0.10 off their orders. 

“As we know, the most sustainable cup is likely the one you already own,” said Kate Daly, managing director and head of the Center for the Circular Economy at Closed Loop Partners. “Bringing your own cup to stores is a critical step towards reducing single-use packaging waste. 

“Starbucks is a leader in this work, as the first national retailer of scale to offer personal cup ordering in every channel, including mobile order.” 

The new personal cup policy has been rolled out at Starbucks locations nationwide, so consumers can start bringing their own cups on their next coffee run. 

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