Waitrose’s free coffee deal was first introduced in 2013 and caused a stir two years later when the supermarket was forced to remind members of the “etiquette” of buying a snack first if they wanted to enjoy a free hot drink.
It comes after Waitrose reported a 5% drop in like-for-like sales to £3.6 billion in September, with operating profit down by more than £90 million to £432 million.
Shoppers have instead been switching to budget supermarkets such as Aldi and Lidl, according to data from Kantar, with the latter now having almost double Waitrose’s market share in the UK.
The high-end supermarket axed another popular deal for loyalty card holders in February this year, a free newspaper with a £10 spend. A spokesperson said there were no plans to restore that offer.
How to claim a free hot drink
Waitrose is restoring its free hot drinks to loyalty card members across all 331 UK stores from 7 November, excluding garages and service stations.
MyWaitrose card holders must make a purchase in stores and bring their own cup to claim a maximum of one free hot tea or coffee per day.
Shoppers can claim a free Americano, latte, cappuccino or a cup of tea when the offer relaunches in November, and there is no minimum spend required to claim the freebie.
Waitrose said its loyalty card holders would now also be getting better free coffee, upgrading to premium coffee beans as it teams up with Caffè Nero.
Charlotte Di Cello, the commercial director for Waitrose, said: “Our customers loved the myWaitrose free coffee offer, so we’re really excited to bring it back, with premium beans from the Nero Roasting Company.
“The partnership is an ideal fit, helping customers enjoy quality coffee both in store or at home - with even more benefits in the pipeline.”
MyWaitrose members and Caffè Nero App users will be able to receive benefits in branches of each chain.
Will Stratton-Morris, chief executive of Caffè Nero UK, which has 650 stores, said the partnership “feels like a natural collaboration”, with customers of each company getting mutual discounts and benefits.