My Complicated Relationship with Starbucks


When I tell people that I have a coffee shop blog, the first question they ask is if I am ever going to write a review on Starbucks. And my answer is no… sorta. Starbucks and I have a very complicated relationship. It’s a love-hate type of thing. If you’ve read some of my blog posts, you may have assumed that I hate Starbucks based on the low key shade I throw. But if you know me personally, you may have assumed I was obsessed with Starbucks because you always see me with a Starbucks cup on my hand.

Let’s put it this way: Starbucks is not quality coffee and they have misrepresented important coffee lingo. For example, a caramel macchiato is nothing to what an actual macchiato should be. So do not go to a local coffee shop expecting to know about coffee based on what your order at Starbucks is, trust me. I also do not like the fact that the baristas do not bother with latte art. Local coffee shops see coffee as a work of art. Baristas should be trained to produce masterpieces! At Starbucks, they are trained to make fast coffee because there is a huge line of impatient customers waiting for their caffeine fix.

Starbucks is not about the coffee; it is about efficiency and satisfaction it provides to its loyal customers.

They make the holidays special– Every year, I get excited for the pumpkin spice lattes. I count the days for their arrival! Fall season would not be the same without this delicious drink! After PSL arrives, I eagerly wait for the holiday cups to arrive. Nothing gets you more in the Christmas spirit than the Starbucks red cups! It’s the season for caramel brulee, eggnog, and gingerbread lattes! It can’t get any more joyful than that!

They write my name on my cup– Yeah they may spell it wrong once in a while (although I don’t understand how complicated the name Lilly can be), but it’s the effort that counts. Nothing makes me feel more appreciated than seeing my name personalized on my to-go cup.

Starbucks Rewards Program– The price difference between Starbucks and local coffee shops is not that much. The major difference is that if I am going to pay $4 for my coffee I would like to be able to benefit from it in the long run. With the Starbucks Rewards Program, I can. Every dollar spent counts towards my reward. After a certain amount of purchases, I get rewarded with a free drink or food item. So my wallet prefers that I buy Starbucks. Although some local coffee shops have created a rewards program as well, none of them let me pay with my phone. If I ever forget my wallet I can still purchase Starbucks by using the Starbucks app. How convenient!

Starbucks shows me love on my birthday- Every year, Starbucks never fails to wish me a Happy Birthday. As part of the Rewards Program, I receive a free beverage/food on my birthday. Like a true, loyal friend!

I am aware that we are being overpriced for a cup of joe that is more sugar than actual coffee. But I have a major sweet tooth, so of course I love Starbucks’ drinks. With that being said, whoever is in charge of marketing is doing a really great job because no matter how many times I say that I have broken up with Starbucks, I just keep coming back. Of course those occasional emails offering a discount on my cup of latte or food item are always appreciated and give me an extra reason for going there versus another place. What can I say, with the economy being how it is and my situation as a college student, anywhere I can save a dime is a place to come back.

2 thoughts on “My Complicated Relationship with Starbucks”

  1. Lilly, my sentiments exactly! The best cup of coffee I’ve ever had was in Punta Cana and I’ve been searching for a similar cup of joe since then, lol.


  2. I can relate. I tend to like the independent coffee shops more than the chains. Starbucks is geared towards quantity and not quality. Maybe in their beginning as a freshly founded coffee shop they may have been worth while. But supply and demand threw quality out.


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