How to Order Starbucks like a Pro: 11 Things Baristas Wish You Knew

Whether you’re a regular customer or new to the coffee chain, everyone wants to know how to order Starbucks like a pro. Like other coffee house chains, Starbucks has a specific way of doing things, and while it’s not expected, it is appreciated when customers take note. After all, doing so can result in much faster wait times and less confusion all around.

Curious to know how to order Starbucks like a pro? We share the right way to order a drink, plus some of the things Starbucks employees hate and wish you knew, below.

Mysterious "Dumb Starbucks" Coffee Shop Parodies Famed Seattle Chain

Baristas wish Starbucks customers knew certain things to make their jobs more pleasant. | Dan R. Krauss/ Getty Images

1. How to order Starbucks like a pro

Want to know how to order Starbucks like a pro? Tell the baristas your drink in the right order. Here are the steps every barista wish you knew:

  • Hot or iced
  • Size of drink
  • Do you want it decaf?
  • Number of shots
  • Would you like syrup? (If so, how much?)
  • Type of milk
  • Add the extras or make adjustments
  • The name of your drink

If you want a pumpkin spice latte, your drink order should sound something like this: “I’d like a hot, venti, almond milk, no whipped cream pumpkin spice latte, please.” Easy, right?

2. The sizing is tall, grande, and venti

We’ve all been guilty of ordering a small, medium, or large at Starbucks. And while they likely won’t call you out, baristas secretly hate it. Ordering traditional drink sizes confuses Starbucks employees and you don’t want confusion when someone is in charge of your caffeine intake. The next time you order, brush up on Starbucks tall, grande, and venti sizes.

3. Double blended is not a thing

Some Starbucks customers prefer a double blended frappuccino, as they think its much smoother. However, it’s not exactly a thing and ends up looking more like a watery coffee milkshake than a creamy frappuccino. Order it how it comes and your barista will love you for it.

4. Don’t ask for extra caramel

As a rule of thumb, don’t ask for extra caramel. The caramel — and chocolate syrup for that matter — exists to be a decorative “drizzle” on the top of your frappuccino. There’s nothing extra about “drizzle.”

5. Non-fat milk makes horrible foam

If you’re a fan of foam — and are prone to request extra foam — think twice before asking for non-fat milk. According to some baristas, non-fat milk is not ideal for foam-making.

6. Don’t order a latte without foam

Speaking of foam, you might not think it’s a big deal, but ordering a latte without foam literally slows down the operation. To get rid of the foam on a latte, baristas have to scoop it out by hand.

7. It’s ‘espresso’ not ‘expresso’

One of the things Starbucks employees hate the most? When customers mispronounce the word “espresso.” While it’s not the end of the world, they do wish the hidden X would go away.

8. Please keep the restrooms clean

One of the many benefits of a Starbucks on every corner is a public restroom on every corner. And while some locations provide a code for customers only — that is typically true for large cities — they are relatively clean for so many uses. That said, who do you think keeps them that way? It’s not always the customers. Starbucks baristas are responsible for keeping restrooms clean, therefore they wish you knew to tidy up your messes.

9. Avoid spelling your name

Starbucks baristas don’t exactly care if they misspell your name. And, as it turns out, they could get annoyed if you recite the spelling for them. Unless a barista asks how to spell your name, let them write it however they want. After all, if they butcher the spelling, it will make for a hilarious start to your morning.

10. Say ‘that’s it’ when you’re done ordering via the drive-through

Pet-peeve is an understatement when it comes to customers leaving the speaker box without ending their order. To avoid confusion, end your order with a simple “that’s it!” That way the barista working the drive-through knows you’re done ordering your cup of Joe and can start the next order with confidence.

11. Be kind

One thing Starbucks baristas wish you knew was to be kind — especially during the early morning shift when everyone is waiting to fuel up on caffeine. Kindness goes a long way and might even score you some extra treats or a discount.

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