Each week I take my boys to story time at our local library. And every week at story time, I see lots of caregivers drinking their beverage of choice in a disposable cup from a local coffee shop.
Not only is this very expensive, but it’s also tough on the environment. I don’t know the exact price of a to-go coffee at a coffee shop as I haven’t been in one for years, but I’m certain it’s more than I spend at home for my organic, fair-trade beverage of choice. In addition, every one of those disposable cups either ends up in a landfill or gets processed for recycling (which, while better than the alternative, is still resource intensive).
A more environmentally friendly alternative, if you don’t want to make your own morning drink, is to take a reusable cup with you into the coffee shop and to ask them to fill that instead of using a disposable cup. When we drive on road trips, my husband does this at gas stations all across America. And while most places don’t give a discount for bringing your own cup, they are certainly happy to fill it for him. So he gets fresh (well, most of the time), hot coffee as we drive, and he’s able to do it without having a disposable cup end up in a landfill. We simply pack our insulated, reusable cup whenever we go. [We use something like THIS. You can also find decorated ones, like THIS, THIS, THIS, and THIS].
If you want to take this a step further and make it not only green, but budget friendly, you can do what we do when we’re at home. When we’re not traveling, each morning we get up and make a pot of our beverage of choice. I make a pot of tea, and my husband makes a pot of coffee. We then put that in one of our reusable containers to take with us when we’re on the go, or simply drink it out of our favorite mug if we’re at home.
It’s rare that I arrive at morning story time without a container of home-brewed tea, just as my husband rarely heads out in the morning without his cup of home-brewed coffee. But with a little bit of effort, we’re able to keep our daily cups of warmth and comfort both budget- and eco-friendly. We apply this same principle in the summertime, when – if we choose not to bring a hot drink – we do it like THIS.
Do you bring your own drinks from home? Or bring your own reusable container to your local coffee shop for a hot drink on the go?