Starbucks begins testing fees for paper cups

Starbucks begins testing fees for paper cups

Starbucks in London is going to start charging customers 5 pence (about 7 cents) for ordering their teas and coffee in a paper cup.

The chain will be trying the idea in its London cafes in a bid to get more people to use reusable cups.

Starbucks has 900 stores in the UK and it will be testing the waters in 25 coffee shops in London.

Starting in February and lasting three months, customers who use the shops involved in the trials will be charged an extra 5 pence for their drink if it’s in a paper cup.

The coffee chain said that it wants to see if the additional charge on paper cups will encourage people to use reusable ones.

The news comes on the same day MPs are calling for a 25p tax on “disposable” coffee cups and threaten to ban them altogether if the latte levy doesn’t work.

Starbucks sells its own reusable cups for £1 ($1.37). The chain cut the price in half to 50 pence (68 cents) during a trial in 2016.

“We found that this did not move the needle in the way we thought it might,” Starbucks said in a statement.

“We will investigate the impact of a 5 pence charge on a paper cup, coupled with prominent marketing of reusable cups, on customer behavior.”

Starbucks is hoping that the charge might have the same effect as the ban on free plastic bags in supermarkets.

Mary Greeley News