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10 tips to make your Starbucks Japan experience more economical and enjoyable

Do you know?

When you buy a Tumbler cup at Starbucks Japan, you will receive a free drink for 1,000 yen?
Or when you use a personal cup to buy drink, you will get a discount of 20 yen?

This article summarizes 10 good tips to help you experience Starbucks Japan more economically and enjoyable.
Definitely read it if you are a Starbucks fan!

Buy a Tumbler cup at Starbucks and get a free drink for 1,000 yen

When you buy a Tumbler cup (タンブラー) or bottle (ボトル) at Starbucks, you will receive a 1,000 yen promotional coupon for 1 drink.

You do not have to buy drink at the same store where you bought the Tumbler cup, because this promotional coupon can be used at most Starbucks stores.

At Starbucks Coffee stores, you can absolutely order a Venti size drink (the largest size) without worrying about going over 1,000 yen.
Or you can also consider visiting Starbucks Reserve stores. These are higher-end Starbucks with a variety of limited edition drinks priced around 1,000 yen/cup.

Tumbler cups or water bottles at Starbucks usually cost from 3,000 ~ 5,000 yen. If you get 1,000 yen back as a gift, that’s also an attractive promotion, right?

Notes when using:
1. If you order a drink over 1,000 yen, you only need to pay the excess amount and the promotional coupon can still be used.
But if you order less than 1,000 yen, you will not receive change.
2. Voucher is valid for 1 month from date of purchase.

Take advantage of the “One More Coffee” promotion to drink Starbucks coffee for 150 yen/cup

When you buy 1 cup of Drip Coffee (ドリップコーヒー) or 1 cup of Caffè Misto (カフェミスト) at Starbucks, you will receive a receipt printed with promotional information “One More Coffee”.

With this receipt, you will receive a discount on your second cup of Drip Coffee (or Caffè Misto).
Specifically, Drip Coffee is only 150 yen/cup and Caffè Misto is only 200 yen/cup.

In particular, the above preferential price still applies as long as the size of the second drink is smaller or equal to the size of the first drink.
Therefore, to be able to drink the second large sized drink at the cheapest price, you should order the first large sized drink, like the Venti size for example.

Notes when using:
1. The first time ordering hot coffee, the second time ordering cold coffee is also OK (or vice versa is also OK).
2. The first time ordering Drip Coffee, the second time ordering Caffè Misto is also OK (or vice versa is also OK).
First time buying at store A, second time buying at store B is also OK.
4. Not applicable for the 3rd drink.
5. Only applicable during the day.

Choose size Tall or larger to drink Starbucks at a better price

At Starbucks Japan, drinks come in 4 sizes: Short, Tall, Grande and Venti.
For just an additional 50 yen, you can go up 1 size with about 100ml more capacity.

Short240ml350 yen ~
Tall350ml400 yen ~
Grande470ml450 yen ~
Venti590ml500 yen ~

If you have found your favorite drink, choose size Tall or larger to enjoy delicious drinks at the best price.

Free size upgrade with the Size Up Morning promotion

Source: https://starbucks.amebaownd.com/

If you go to Starbucks before 11:00 a.m. and order the pre-determined combo menu, you will be able to increase your drink size by 1 size for free with the Size Up Morning promotion.

Size Short will be increased to size Tall.
Size Tall will be increased to size Grande.
Size Grande will be increased to size Venti.

Specifically, you need to order a combo of 1 drink and 1 food as prescribed below.

・Drip Coffee
・Caffè Misto
・Starbucks Latte
・Soy Latte
・Almond Milk Latte
・Oat Milk Latte
・Sausage and egg sandwiches
・Sausage rolls

1. Depending on the branch, the Size Up Morning promotion may not be applicable.
2. Depending on the store, the combo menu may change.

Get a 20 yen discount/ drink when buying with a personal cup

When buying drink at Starbucks, if you use a personal cup (or bottle), you will receive an immediate discount of 20 yen.
This is a small gift from Starbucks to thank you for contributing to saving resources and reducing waste (such as cups and lids).

This promotion is attractive in that it doesn’t necessarily have to be a Starbucks cup (or bottle), but just a personal cup (or bottle).

You can buy it and sit at the restaurant to drink, or you can take it away.
In case of takeout, choose a cup or bottle with a lid to make it safer when on the go.

For example, if you want to order a grande size Hojicha Tea Latte with a personal tumbler, you can say:
Depending on what you want to order, you can adjust the above sentence.

In case you’re unsure about the size of the individual cup or bottle that can hold your drink at Starbucks, it’s better to ask the staff before placing your order.
How to ask:
The staff at Starbucks are very enthusiastic, they will guide you right away.

Notes when using:
In case of using a cup (or bottle) with a lid, before ordering, remember to take out the lid and only give the cup (or bottle) to the staff.
2. If the restaurant is empty, sometimes you can ask the staff to clean the cup (or bottle) after drinking.

Buy a 250g package of coffee beans at Starbucks and receive free coffee beans of a different type

When you buy a 250g package of coffee beans at Starbucks, you will usually receive about 15~20g of other coffee beans as a free gift.

When it’s not too busy, Starbucks staff often take the initiative to offer advice when they see you choosing coffee beans.
After you have chosen and paid, the staff will delicately give away about 15~20g of other coffee beans.
The flavor of the chosen coffee for gifting is usually based on the previous conversation or the product line that Starbucks is currently promoting.

However, because there are no specific regulations for giving coffee beans, depending on the time and the staff, you may not receive an additional gift.

The advice is that you should chat a little with the staff, not only to receive gifts, but also to find the coffee that suits your taste among the many types of coffee at Starbucks.

Additional information:
・A 250g package of coffee beans at Starbucks usually costs from 1,200 ~ 1,800 yen, brews about 20~25 cups.
・The best-selling coffee bean at Starbucks is HOUSE BLEND. If you’re unsure about which type to choose, give this one a try.

Can buy coffee beans retail at Starbucks

Although coffee beans at Starbucks are usually pre-packaged in 250g packages, you can buy retail quantities of 100g or more.

This is really convenient because you can try many different flavors of nearly 20 types of coffee beans sold at Starbucks.

Additional information:
On average, 100g of Starbucks coffee beans will cost about 500 ~ 700 yen, making about 10 cups.

Can request the coffee beans to be ground into various sizes

After purchasing coffee beans at Starbucks, the staff will ask if you want to grind the coffee beans.
If you don’t have a blender at home, you can ask the staff to grind it for you.

If you buy Starbucks coffee beans on the online store or at the supermarket, you can still take them to the nearest Starbucks and ask the staff to grind it for you.

Grind sizeHow to say
Medium coarse中粗挽き(ちゅうあらびき)でお願いします。
Medium fine中細挽き(ちゅうぼそびき)でお願いします。
Extra fine極細挽き(ごくぼそびき)でお願いします。

If you’re unsure about the grind size, you can ask the staff for advice.
Depending on the brewing equipment and your preferences, the staff will suggest the appropriate grind size.

Can request to be served with ceramic cups when drinking at the store

If you drink at a store, you can ask the staff to serve you with a ceramic cup instead of the usual paper cup.
Drinking from a ceramic cup not only helps you feel more relaxed, but also helps the drink stay hot longer.

However, serving with ceramic cups only applies to hot drinks and Small size (or Tall size).
Drip Coffee, Starbucks Latte, Tea Latte… can all be switched to ceramic cups if you like.

For example, if you want to order a Tall size Hojicha Tea Latte in a ceramic cup, you can say:
Depending on what you want to order, you can adjust the above sentence.

Once finished drinking, place the cup in the return area.
If you’re not sure where the return area is, you can also give the cup to the staff so they can help clean it up.

Transform drinks with Customize Menu at Starbucks

At Starbucks Japan, after choosing a drink, you can customize the drink to your liking by ordering a customized menu.

For example, you can order a cup of tea latte and ask to change from regular milk to low-fat milk, or you can order a cup of frappuccino and ask to add Whipped cream…

Depending on the custom content, it will be free or additional charges.
Below are some free customizations that you should try to enjoy a better drink.

Change from regular milk to low-fat or fat-free milk.
How to say:

Add Chocolate sauce or Caramel sauce.
How to say:

Extra green tea powder for Matcha drinks or cinnamon powder for Chai Tea Latte.
How to say:

Add (or reduce) ice.
How to say:

Add (or reduce) Whipped cream for frappuccino.
How to say:

Depending on the type of drink, there might be other customization options.
Exploring the customized menu to transform your drink to your liking is a very interesting experience that you should definitely try when visiting Starbucks Japan.


Besides promotions like “One More Coffee” or “Size Up Morning” to help you save more, being able to change to ceramic cups or customize drinks will help you experience Starbucks Japan much more interesting.

Next time you visit Starbucks, try applying the tips in this article to explore Starbucks Japan more fully!


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