Starbucks to Accept Reusable Cups for Drive-thru and Mobile Orders

The coffee giant is the only national coffeehouse in the United States to offer the option.

January 04, 2024

Starbucks announced that customers can use their clean, personal cup when ordering in cafe, in the drive-thru or when using the app at all company-operated and participating licensed Starbucks stores across the U.S. and Canada. The milestone supports Starbucks commitment to reduce waste by 50 percent by 2030.  

“Offering customers more options to use a personal cup when they visit Starbucks marks tangible progress towards the future. We know our customers are passionate about the planet, and now, they can join us in our efforts to give more than we take, no matter how they order,” said Michael Kobori, Starbucks chief sustainability officer.

According to Starbucks, it is the first national coffeehouse in the U.S. to offer customers the option to use their personal cup when mobile ordering. For Canadian customers, it’s the first time they have the option to use their personal cup in mobile order for all drinks and all sizes.

Following a successful personal cup test at 200 drive-thru stores across Colorado last spring, Starbucks store employees informed and helped co-design the custom reusable cup smallware all stores will now use to transfer orders to personal cups.

“As long as we are following all our procedures and steps, it doesn’t add any more time, and it is actually making customers happier,” said Brook, a partner who worked at a store that participated in the Colorado test. “This has been a really big hit.”

How It Works

Customers at participating stores in the United States and Canada who bring any clean, personal cup will receive a $0.10 discount on their beverage, and U.S. Starbucks Rewards members will also receive 25 Bonus Stars (maximum three times per day.)

In the store, customers tell the barista when they order that they brought their own personal cup and give it to the barista. Customers choosing to sit and stay in cafe can also request a reusable ceramic or glass cup at most stores.  

While ordering in the drive-thru, customers order their beverage as usual and let the barista know they brought their own cup. At the pickup window, baristas will collect customers’ personal cup without the lid “using a contactless vessel to ensure hygiene and safety.” The beverage will be returned the same way.

When customers order via the Starbucks app, first they will choose the “Customization” button and then select “Personal Cup” in the menu and continue ordering as normal. When they get to the store, customers connect with their barista at the pickup area and hand over their clean personal cup without the lid. The barista will hand the beverage back in a contactless vessel.

There are a few stipulations with using your own cup—Starbucks noted that the cups must be cleaned before bringing them and that baristas will not rinse them out.