MSE News

Pret a Manger launches £20/month coffee subscription service

Pret a Manger launches £20/month coffee subscription service

Coffee and sandwich chain Pret a Manger has launched a new subscription service, offering up to five coffees or other drinks a day for a £20 monthly fee.

Customers with the YourPret Barista subscription can redeem one "barista-prepared" drink – including coffees, teas and iced drinks – every 30 minutes, up to a maximum of five per day.

Those who sign up will be able to get the first month free as an introductory offer, and will then pay £20 per month.

For those who already have a regular Pret habit, this deal could slash your costs – though of course it's only a saving if you would have paid for the drink anyway.

Though buying a hot drink from a coffee shop is never the most MoneySaving option, there are lots of ways to save if you do – see our Pay £1, get up to 50p off most Costa, Pret & Starbucks drinks EVERY time blog for more on reusable cup discounts.

How does the Pret subscription work?

Here are the key need-to-knows:

  • The cost's £20/month, with the first month free – and there's no minimum subscription period. You can sign up now and then cancel at any time – so, in theory, you could bag the month's free trial, then cancel before the month's up to avoid paying anything.

  • You can get up to five drinks per day – but only one drink every 30 minutes. So you won't be able to use the subscription to get a round of drinks in for friends.

  • It's not just coffee – a wide range of drinks are included, though not food. You can order coffee, tea and hot chocolate, and all iced drinks are also included in the offer – including iced coffees, cold brews, frappes and smoothies (though the cocoa, almond butter & banana smoothie, raspberry, mango & ginger smoothie, and avocado, mango & ginger smoothie are all excluded). You can also ask for milk alternatives, syrups and extra shots for your drink under the subscription. Pret's food range and bottled cold drinks aren't included.

    You also won't be able to get your redeemed drinks served in a reusable cup, due to ongoing concerns about coronavirus.

  • The subscription works at all Pret shops in the UK, bar one. You can't use it at the outlet at South Mimms Services.

    You'll need to order from a Pret shop – so you won't be able to get your drink via Deliveroo, for instance – but you can choose whether to drink it in store or take it away.

  • You'll be able to subscribe online, then show a code on your phone. Once you've signed up online, you'll be sent a confirmation email and an email with a QR code (you'll get a new QR code each month when your subscription renews).

    You'll then need to show the QR code – either on your phone or as a printed voucher – when you go to a Pret store. It'll be scanned, so you can redeem your drink. It's worth noting the T&Cs state you're not allowed to share your subscription with anyone else.

    Remember that once you've signed up, you'll be automatically charged for the subscription each month, though you can cancel at any time.

So, how does the deal stack up?

This is the first time we've seen a major UK coffee chain launch this kind of subscription service, and it's an interesting offer for those who are regular Pret customers. Buying coffee regularly from a high street chain is never the most MoneySaving option, but if you do this, you may be able to save.

Technically, if you max out the subscription and get five drinks per day, seven days a week you could get £100s-worth of Pret coffee for your £20 monthly fee (though we don't know if this tactic would be recommended by medical professionals). For example, if you buy a £2.40 latte – though actual prices may differ from store to store – the subscription would in theory allow you to get 155 of them in a 31-day month, which would otherwise cost an eye-watering £372.

But more realistically, to work out if this is worth it you'll need to weigh up how much you typically spend on drinks at Pret in a month. If it's regularly more than £20, you'll likely save with a subscription.

So if you buy the same £2.40 latte twice a week, you'd pay very slightly – about 80p per month – less with the subscription. If you buy it three times a week, the saving would be around £11.20 per month.

Remember, even if a subscription would cut your costs, you'll still likely be paying much more than you would if you made a drink at home to take out with you in a thermos or reusable cup – and the cost of a daily coffee can soon add up. (For a fun way to check how much you spend on non-essentials and how much you could save, see our Demotivator tool.)  But if you're determined to get your regular Pret fix, this subscription could mean big savings compared to buying drinks individually.