By Julia Furmanek 

Okay, I’ll admit it. I have a bit of a caffeine problem. It starts in the morning when I’m a little groggy from staying up too late the night before. I feel peppier after and I like it, so why not have another? Bring a little excitement to the drone of Zoom meetings. And so it goes. 

But my coffee habit can get quite expensive, especially on campus. Joe from the dining hall? No, thank you. So, to Starbucks I flock, draining my savings with round after round of Venti Cold Brews — $3.78 really does add up. 

I decided it was time for change. No, I didn’t consider giving up caffeine. That ship has sailed. But I could start making my own coffee.

Now, I’m not a fan of traditional coffee makers. Not only do they rely on a lot of electricity, but it takes a while for the pot to be ready, and they’re loud. Keurigs produce a lot of waste and K-cups are expensive, never mind the cost of the appliance itself.

But then, I discovered the French press. 

The French press is an absolute game changer. To start, you don’t even need to plug it in. In fact, you don’t even need a kitchen. I boil water with an electric kettle in my bedroom, fill the press with coffee and hot water and let it sit for just four minutes. Then you squeeze out all the coffee grounds and — poof — you have an entire pot ready for consumption. 

My French press cost about $8 and the coffee grounds I buy are only $5 for about 240 cups’ worth. It also doesn’t require any coffee filters or K-cups and I use a mug from home, so I’m not wasting a ton of paper cups from a cafe either. The whole thing goes in the dishwasher and comes out clean. I honestly couldn’t be happier with it. 

To my fellow caffeine addicts, for the sake of the earth, your budget and time management, consider investing in a French press.