How about a little Starbucks math? Tom Barlow has already set you straight on how much a barrel of Starbucks lattes would run you. Now we have this item from the More Bang for Your Starbucks Department:
Manhattan artist Billy Chasen explains on his blog, [an error occurred while processing this directive].com, that one shouldn't be shy with Starbucks coupons. Chasen, "free beverage" coupon in hand, set out to devise the most joltin' of joes, pushing the bean champeen to its espresso extremities.
With the help of a sympathetic Starbucks server -- and an assist from his barista sista, Lauren -- Chasen concocted the 13-shot venti soy hazelnut vanilla cinnamon white mocha with extra white mocha and caramel! The tab came to $12.70 -- $13.76 with New York's 8.375% sales and use taxes -- which is juuuust a little cheaper than a domestic beer might run in Chasen's Upper East Side neighborhood (cue rim shot).
So how much caffeine are we talking about? Let's see: an espresso shot contains about 75 milligrams of caffeine, so if you're thinking of ordering the 13-shot Chasenchino, you're looking at around 1,000 milligrams of caffeine. Unhealthy? Sure. Lethal? Nah, not unless you're pounding 10 of them. Or you're an infant.
Looking for more Starbucks hijinks? Enjoy Mark Malkoff's Starbucks Challenge, and watch as the eks-sess-sive ee-nunts-ee-ay-torrrr sets out to hit all of Manhattan's 171 Starbucks in 24 hours.
More from WalletPop!
Things that you don't need to spend money on
The $13.76 espresso: Never trust an artist with a coupon
I know a good glass of wine is hard to resist, but some serious cash can be consumed along with the tannins. Even though I've never been a heavy drinker, in the times in my life when I was drinking a few glasses of wine with dinner most nights, a good 25% or more of my grocery budget went to alcohol -- to the tune of $1000 a year. Can you imagine what that would be earning in an IRA right now?
It may be a cliche, but it's true: at $2.75 to $4.50 apiece, lattes and other fancy coffee drinks are as pricey as they come. Add to that the super-generous tip left by most big spenders like yourself (yeah, I know you!) and you're racking up an expense of over $100 a month, even if you only get one latte a day. How about a fancy coffee drink for special occasions, and learn the tricks of brewing great beans at home the rest of the month?
Want to remember this moment, at the fair, on that special trip to the amusement park, when you went on a business trip to Chicago and wanted your kids to remember you still loved 'em? Take a picture. Every time my husband and I go back through our receipts from a trip, the ones we rue most are the fleeting souvenirs, usually long-since relegated to the trash bin or the give-away pile. Memories were meant to be remembered -- not tossed in the garbage.
It may be fun to let your kids pick out their own cereal, but you get a lot less bang for your buck -- not to mention, adding unneeded packaging to the waste stream. Don't do it!
Vitamins + Water. Brilliant, right? You get your water, you get your vitamins...uh-uh. It would be tons cheaper to just buy a bottle of multi-vitamins, and get your water from the tap. In most cities, the tap water is just as healthy as bottled water -- if not better. Just remember to run the water for a few minutes if you live in an older house. Even if you get the priciest multivitamins, you'll save $30 or $40 a month off a one-bottle-a-day habit.
When you buy gift cards (for yourself too!), not only are you giving the establishment an interest-free loan for an unforeseen amount of time, you're also giving the company free money, too -- in nearly every case, you won't be able to get your small change back as cash, and you can never find anything on which to spend 71 cents. What's more, about 10% of gift cards are *never* spent; wouldn't you have rather put that in your bank account and invited your friend out for a latte, instead?
Going to the farmer's market to save money? Bring a bottle of water along with -- you'll spend your money on the good stuff (veggies! baked goods! dairy-fresh cheese!) and save your diet, too.