SAVING MONEY

How to get Free Coffee, Tea and Hot Drinks in the UK

The price of just about everything is going up these days, and that includes takeaway drinks. There are, however, lots of ways to grab a freebie coffee if you keep your eyes peeled.

Despite the rising cost of living, sometimes we need a fancy salted caramel frappe with extra sprinkles to get us through a long day. And who can blame us! They are delicious.

Use these hacks to get free coffee and hot drinks in the UK and you’ll never pay full price for a takeaway drink again!

free coffee tea and hot drinks
Image credit: Canva

How to get Free Coffee, Tea and Hot Drinks in the UK

Earn Points via Loyalty Apps for Free Coffee

Starting with the obvious, it’s always worth signing up to coffee shop loyalty schemes, even if you only visit every now and then. It’s quick and easy to join, and if you are popping in there anyway, you may as well get some points!

Costa

Sign up to the Costa app to earn a free drink for every 10 ‘beans’ (drink purchases). Also, you can get a free babyccino hot chocolate for kids! 

Use code UBS40 for 5 beans to get you started, and refer your friends for even more beans towards free drinks.

Caffe Nero

Earn a free drink for every 9 drinks purchased via the Caffe Nero app. 

Caffe Nero offer paper loyalty cards in store which you can get stamped, but I recommend the app – I’ve lost count of how many of those cards I have misplaced now! The good news is that you can get your paper stamps transferred over to your digital loyalty card by speaking to the barista. Gather any forgotten cards you have lurking at the back of your cupboard draws and make sure you claim those points!

MyWaitrose customers can also link their cards with the Caffe Nero app for a free coffee. Plus, customers can save 25% on seasonal menu items including drinks! A no brainer for loyalty club members of both Waitrose and Caffe Nero.

Paul UK 

Earn 100 points for every £1 spent in store via the Paul app, and points can be exchanged for free items in store. There is also the opportunity to collect ‘stamps’ to earn free hot drinks.

Students and NHS staff are also able to get a 20% discount at PAUL, by showing their TOTUM card (previously NUS) or blue light card.

McDonalds

Download the McDonald’s app to receive weekly offers every Monday, such as the chance to earn points towards free items. Also, receive 1000 bonus points on your first order.

Greggs

Get a free hot drink of your choice when you download the Greggs app, as well as treats on your birthday.

Coco Di Mama

Join Club Coco for birthday freebies (which seems to include a coffee according to their website).

Plus students get an extra 20% off when showing a valid student ID.

Harris and Hoole

Download the Harris and Hoole app to get your first coffee for free. Harris and Hoole claim to be the most generous loyalty scheme (offering one free drink for every 6 purchased), so it’s a handy app to have if you have a H&H nearby.

Coffee#1

Sign up to the Coffee 1 app where you can refer friends to earn free drinks. Once your friend makes their first purchase, you will receive your hot drink. There are no referral limits, so get sharing!

Bru

By signing up to the app, customers receive a free hot drink (as well as a free wafflepop on your birthday).

Gail’s Bakery

Download the Gail’s app to get a free barista-prepared drink. Plus, you’ll be given a free sweet treat for your birthday!

Most coffee loyalty schemes are completely free to use, and are generally worth the effort of downloading the app. The Starbucks app however has a different format, and requires loading money onto the card first in order to spend and earn ‘stars’. I have lost way too many cards in my lifetime, and I don’t like the idea of essentially paying in advance for your drinks. It’s better to keep your money safe in your bank, in my opinion – the rewards are not worth the risk.

Bring your Reusable Cup

Many high street coffee shops offer discounts when customers bring their own reusable cups. For example, Paul and Pret offer customers a 50p discount on all take away hot drinks.

Bring a takeaway cup to Costa and Caffe Nero to earn double the amount of beans/stamps per purchase.

As well being better value, it’s the environmentally friendly choice, too. Dig out your reusable coffee cup or pick up a cheap one to start saving every time you buy a beverage.

Try the Pret Subscription

Pret are currently the only coffee chain in the UK offering a subscription model, where customers can get up to 5 barista made drinks per day for a monthly set fee.

‘Club Pret’ costs £15 for your first month and £30 for every month after that. If you want to buy multiple drinks per day. this could potentially be great value, particularly during the first month when the fee is half price.

£15 for a month’s coffee means that by your fourth or fifth hot drink, every further drink you receive will be free.

Use this welcome offer during summer if you are an iced coffee fiend, or save it for the Christmas period if you want to sample the festive flavours to make the most of your subscription.

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Get a Free Coffee every month with Perkbox

Perkbox is a rewards platform that employees can access as part of their benefit package offered by their work place. Check to see if your employer has signed up to Perkbox, as if so, you can receive one free Caffe Nero drink per month (or a free Greggs sausage roll instead).

You will have access to a new QR code once per month, and you can screenshot these to use later as they tend to have long use by dates.

Use Cashback Apps for Supermarket Freebies

Apps like Greenjinn and Shopmium (use referral code AMUYHAFY for a free bag of chocolate buttons) often run promotions and codes for free supermarket iced coffee. These apps are worth downloading if you want to save on your grocery spend, and coupons are updated regularly so there’s always a new bargain to be had.

Download your Mobile Rewards App

Rewards apps run by mobile networks offer various freebies for their customers which change regularly.

Currently 02 priority members can get a free Greggs coffee once a week, whilst Vodafone VeryMe customers have access to a weekly treat every #FeelgoodFriday, which includes free Costa drinks.

Three+ users can buy one Caffe Nero hot drink a week for just £1 using their app.

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Head to Wetherspoons for £1.45 Unlimited Hot Drinks

Pay just £1.45 at Spoons for a hot drink, and get unlimited refills, all day! Freelancers, students or anyone looking for a space to warm up with a hot beverage, this offer could be perfect for you.

Grab a Free Tea or Coffee at Waitrose

Grab a free hot drink with any purchase for those with a myWaitrose card. Just remember to bring your reusable cup!

Final thoughts: How to get Free Coffee, Tea and Hot Drinks in the UK

I hope these tips and hacks to get free coffee, tea and hot drinks help you to nab a freebie beverage!

Check back regularly for any new coffee offers or discounts! If you’re looking for more free stuff, check out these finds:

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