Facing rising commodities prices, Starbucks announced last month that it would be raising prices.
In Manhattan, the cost of a tall coffee rose to $2.01 with tax, which New York Times business editor Jeff Sommer wrote about in his column:
On Jan. 3, my first working day of the year, I got a jolt all right. So did hundreds of other Starbucks customers in Manhattan.
Until that morning, a “tall” cup of coffee — 12 ounces of joe — cost less than $2. In that blissful, prelapsarian time, you would hand over two $1 bills and get back coffee and some small change — 9 cents, actually, but it seemed inconsequential. I usually dropped the coins into the tip jar, not so much out of generosity but selfishness. Why carry those annoying coins in my pocket?
Sommer contacted Starbucks to find out if prices were this high anywhere else in the country, but company officials declined to say. We also reached out to the Starbucks press team and got the following response:
Unfortunately, we do not have a price list available to share at this time. As part of our regular review of pricing, we make adjustments on a market-by-market and product-by-product basis based on business conditions, commodities costs, competitive reasons and geography in order to balance our need to run the business effectively while providing maximum value to our customers.
So we decided to call 25 Starbucks across the country ourselves. The most expensive locations behind Manhattan that we found were Washington D.C., where a tall will run you $1.93, and Brooklyn, where the price is $1.91. We were suprised to learn that in Beverly Hills it’ll only cost you $1.65 — but that’s in part because there’s no sales tax on hot beverages. That means that a person who drinks a tall cup of coffee every day for a year would spend $131.40 less in Los Angeles than Manhattan.
To see how Starbucks prices compare across the country, check out the map below. Just click on a marker to see the prices.
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