20 Things Starbucks Doesn’t Share With Their Customers (& Really Should)

Everyone loves Starbucks. This popular coffee franchise is always there for coffee drinkers, whether they're grabbing a latte on the way to the office or they're meeting a friend or family member for a quick coffee date.

There are so many drinks to choose from, both warm and cold, and now that they have started to introduce healthier menu options, fans of the franchise can even grab breakfast or lunch there, too.

For most people, it's hard to imagine going a day without coffee. The toasty drink (or cold) not only gives people energy and motivation for the day ahead but also tastes amazing. Chances are, when people are grabbing a cup of coffee and not making it themselves (or maybe they never make it in their own kitchen), this is the chain that they turn to.

Caffeinaholics know that they love the drinks from Starbucks, but there's a lot that they should know that goes beyond how each beverage tastes.

From how to order to what goes on behind the scenes, former and current baristas have shared all kinds of tips and facts online. Read on to find out 20 things that Starbucks doesn't share with their customers (but really should).

Continue scrolling to keep reading

Click the button below to start this article in quick view

Start Now

20 They Like When We Go To The Same Starbucks Every Day

The Mirror

While Starbucks is definitely a big corporation, if you go into your neighborhood store every day, it can feel like a nice community.

According to Delish.com, the baristas like when you go to the same Starbucks on a daily basis.

"The people who come in everyday earn a special place in our hearts. We love to know what to make you when you walk in the door and ask how you are doing. It always feels good to see a friendly face before noon, so please don't ever be a stranger."

Isn't that so sweet?! This is something that customers should know about for sure. The next time you head into your local shop, give everyone a smile and feel the good vibes.

19 How We Order Our Drink Is Actually Important


Something else that Starbucks customers should know is how you order your drink actually matters. Delish.com says, "If you don't tell us if you want your drink hot or iced first, we won't write it down on the right cup. And then it's basically all downhill from there."

There is a particular order to follow: the temperature of the drink (iced or hot), size, whether it's decaf, how many pumps of syrup, milk, and anything extra then the drink name.

For example, based on that, you would order an Iced Tall Decaf Non-Fat Latte if that was your drink of choice. This makes things a lot simpler.

18 Sometimes The Coffee Actually Does Taste Weird


We've probably all ordered coffee from Starbucks (probably black coffee in this case) and thought that it tasted strange. As someone who used to work at the coffee chain told This Is Insider, this is true because espresso can get bitter.

As they explained, "Once a shot is pulled, or extracted from an espresso machine, it has 10 seconds before it expires... So if you've ever taken a sip of your regular latte and felt like the taste was a bit off, there's a chance you weren't wrong."

It's good to know that sometimes our coffee does taste bitter... but we still love our Starbucks. That will never change.

17 The Hidden Menu Is A Big Pain


The special Starbucks menu is basically a thing of legend by now and we see the pretty and cool drinks everywhere. But Goodyfeed says that Starbucks employees really aren't big fans of the not-so-obvious menu.

In fact, according to many online commenters, it's a big pain, and baristas' reactions to having to make a "special" drink have people turning to the standard menu instead.

There are two issues: not every store has everything that is necessary for those special menu drinks, and not everyone has the know-how to make the drinks.

16 There's A Smart Trick To Get More Coffee


Have you ever been in line at Starbucks and the girl in front of you has gotten a tall latte in a grande cup? There was a reason for that.

According to Popsugar, if you want more coffee, then ask for your drink in a bigger cup. As the website says, "You can order a grande latte 'in a venti cup,' and you'll basically be getting the larger drink for the smaller price... Most baristas will be lazy and just make a lot of steamed milk and fill the bigger cup up all the way to the top."

Who doesn't want more coffee, right?! This is great information to have and it's something that Starbucks should definitely share with their customers.

15 Some Food Gets Thrown Out

Business Insider UK

There has been a lot of talk about how Starbucks gives away food, but there is still some leftover food that goes bad, which is too bad to hear about.

Business Insider interviewed a former barista named Alex Cote who said, “We would waste over 100 sandwiches a week because you have to make sure you don’t sell out. Many managers would over-order because sales were valued over waste.”

We do understand this, though, and this former barista's explanation makes a lot of sense. There is always a fine balance between not wasting food and making sure that you have enough to sell.

14 There's Actually A Size Above Venti


Reader's Digest notes that there is a size above Venti and it's called Trenta.

Of course, there are some drinks that you would want to order in such a big size and others that you might want to skip. While a latte that is full of sugar and caffeine might be way too much in such a large size, a caffeine-free iced tea could be really nice on a hot summery day. You may have heard the name "Trenta" before and weren't sure if this was really a thing. As it turns out, this drink size does exist so it's good to know about in case you want to order such a massive drink.

13 They Don't Want Us To Order Lattes Without Foam

The Daily Mail

Do you ever order lattes without foam? Even if you never do this, it's possible that you have heard someone else order it. You may have wondered how this type of drink is made or if it's really complex.

As it turns out, it's not the best thing to order at all and employees at Starbucks really don't want you to order a drink without foam.

According to Delish.com, "We have to scoop the foam off your drink by hand, which slows everything down. On behalf of all the baristas in the world, let me say, foam is a good thing." We'll definitely take note of this. Besides, foam is fun, right? Who doesn't want a latte with foam? That seems like the whole point of a latte.

12 We Can Always Ask For Water Free Of Charge


Reader's Digest says that among the things that people who work at Starbucks don't let customers know about, this is one of them: you can always ask for water free of charge.

This is especially good to know when it's the crispiest day of the summer and you want a huge cup of water with tons and tons of ice in it. Imagine your sweet relief when you order your coffee drink and then get a free Venti ice water. Remember this when summer finally comes around again (and tell your friends and family because this is a really great tip).

11 They Can't Make The Coffee Shop Warmer Or Colder


The Independent says that Starbucks employees wish that people wouldn't complain about the temperature in the store because they can't change it.

Sometimes people walk into a Starbucks and say that it's freezing cold or too warm, but since they can't change the temperature, there is really no point in saying anything about it.

This is not only useful info but it's a good reminder that we should try our best not to complain about things that really aren't that important. After all, if we're ordering a coffee and then continuing with our day, we really shouldn't care that much if we're a bit warm or cold.

10 Being Polite Could Get Us Free Things


According to Business Insider, being polite could give you free stuff: "Your Starbucks barista wouldn't mention it, of course, but being friendly goes a long way toward getting free drinks, discounts, and the freshest and tastiest pastries. That's what Amanda Ponzar, chief marketing officer for Community Health Charities, has learned. This loyal Starbucks enthusiast regularly shares social media photos of herself enjoying a Starbucks drink; it's also her place of choice for business meetings."

That's awesome to hear. Of course, you don't want to be nice and polite just to get free stuff, but it's a bonus for being a good person.

9 The Coconut Milk Isn't Super Healthy

Elite Daily

Sometimes you try to make healthier choices when ordering out and then learn that what you thought was healthy actually isn't. Mashed says that the coconut milk that is at Starbucks isn't actually the best option. It has some ingredients that are chemicals, along with more sugar than other milk.

If you're dairy-free or have an allergy, you could always go for almond milk, and Starbucks does have lactose-free milk if you avoid lactose.

And if you do drink dairy then there's really nothing wrong with ordering a latte that has regular milk in it. It's good to know this about the coconut milk for sure.

8 They're Not That Concerned About Getting Names Right

Marie Claire

In the past few years, there has been a lot of chatter about how when people order coffee at Starbucks, the baristas write down the wrong names most of the time (or spell the name in a totally weird way).

According to Buzzfeed, the employees at Starbucks aren't that concerned with spelling customers' names properly.

Many people have talked about this and said that baristas are so busy and working so fast that they can't think about this too much. That does make sense, and it's something to remember for sure. Although you might get upset when your name is misspelled, at least you get to enjoy your favorite latte, right?

7 It's Cool To Order With A Name We Made Up

Business Insider UK

The Independent says that baristas honestly don't mind if you order a drink and have made up a name. This is apparently something that lots of people do and employees totally know it, and it's all cool.

Of all the things that you should know about Starbucks, this is definitely something that feels pretty useful and important. If you have a name that is tough to spell, for example, or it really bugs you when your name is spelled wrong on the cup, then this could be a good option. A lot of customers have a great time with it and use a fun, entertaining name, so you could, too.

6 Baristas Aren't Big Fans Of Special, Intense Orders

The Seattle Times

We can probably guess that it's not the best idea to order a drink that is super complicated. Even if we don't go for that stuff and stick to the regular menu, we have all had the annoying experience of standing in line behind someone who takes fifteen minutes to order. It can be confusing to even understand what they're ordering, so we can imagine that it wouldn't be much fun to be the one to process the order (or, worse, actually have to make the drink).

As The Independent says, "When you order a coffee with one and a HALF packets of Splenda, or demand a certain temperature, yes, we think you’re ridiculous, reveals amateur barista Michelle Licerio."

5 We Can Order Drinks For Our Dog And Baby


If you've ever seen social media posts with cute kids enjoying tiny Starbucks cups, those drinks were most likely "babycinos."

You can totally order drinks for your baby and also for your dog.

Business Insider says that the Babycinos are steamed milk and the "Pupacino" is a cup of whipped cream.

Some people know about this but it doesn't seem like it's something that is talked about all the time, but it's something that we should all know since it doesn't get any more adorable than this. Every child should get the chance to have a mini drink from Starbucks because that is too cute.

4 They Would Rather We Didn't Order Drinks While Talking On The Phone

Travel + Leisure

According to This Is Insider, the people who work at Starbucks would rather that customers didn't talk on the phone while ordering drinks.

We've probably all seen this and it really does seem rude. When you're standing in line behind someone who is texting or talking on the phone while asking for a latte, you always wish that you could tell them to put down the phone and be much more polite. It's not a surprise to hear that Starbucks employees aren't a big fan of this, and this is something that we should talk about a lot more often.

3 Wanting More Syrup Isn't The Best Idea


Do you ever order extra caramel syrup when you're getting a drink at Starbucks? A lot of people do but a former barista who spoke to This Is Insider says that you shouldn't do this at all.

Why? Because extra syrup means that your drink has way too much sugar.

You already get a lot: a tall coffee, for example, has three pumps of syrup. People are definitely trying to eat less sugar these days so we can understand wanting to cool it on the sugary drinks (and maybe save the extra sugar for treating ourselves to actual dessert when we really want it). There's nothing wrong with ordering a drink with a regular amount of syrup.

2 Making Small Talk With The Employees Is Cool


The Odyssey Online says that Starbucks employees love for customers to make small talk with them and just generally be nice and friendly. So the next time that we're in a store, we should strike up a brief chat and ask how their day is going. This would definitely make the whole experience better for everyone.

If we live in a big city, for example, we might not be used to chatting with strangers since we're so busy running around. But it's cool to get into the habit of being friendly and stopping to chat. It can put a spring in our step and cheer us up if we're not having the best day.

1 Tipping Is A Nice Thing To Do

Verge Campus

Cosmopolitan mentions that it would be nice if more people tipped after ordering a drink at Starbucks.

If you have ever seen the tip jar but haven't put anything into it, it might be time to change that the next time that you visit a Starbucks.

As a former barista told Cosmo, "Plus, we don't make tons of money and so if you are ordering a triple shot venti vanilla mocha with two pumps of syrup and chocolate shavings on the bottom, maybe throw me a buck or something?" It also just seems like good karma to leave a tip, right?

Sources: Buzzfeed, Delish, Popsugar, Business Insider, Cosmopolitan

More in Girl Talk