Select Page

6 Things You Can Do With the Starbucks App

You may know that Starbucks has an app, but do you use all the features that come with it? The Starbucks app isn’t just a way to order online, though that’s one of the many things you can do.

You can also use it to redeem and track Starbucks rewards and manage and send gift cards. You can even pay for your drinks directly from the Starbucks app, even if you order them in-store.

Let’s take a closer look at the six things you can do with the Starbucks app!

1. Order Ahead

The Starbucks app makes ordering ahead very straightforward.

You can select your menu items, customize them right on your phone, choose your preferred pickup location, and pay through the app.

Then all that’s left to do is head to Starbucks, where your beverage will be waiting for you!

Let’s go through the steps of ordering ahead for pickup on the Starbucks app:

Step 1. Open your app and select “Order.”

Step 2. Scroll through the menu or use the search feature to find your favorite Starbucks menu items.

Step 3. Tap any menu items you’d like to order, select your preferred size and customizations, and select “Add to order.”

Step 4. Confirm your pickup location or share your location with the app to find a store near you.

Step 5. Review your order and select “Checkout.”

Step 6. Select your payment method and place your order.

You can then head to the store to pick up your order!

2. Customize Your Drink

There are many ways to customize your drink on the Starbucks app.

For example, you can change the size and adjust the type and amount of milk, sweetener, or flavoring in your drink.

You can also add extra ingredients, toppings, and add-ins.

To customize your Starbucks drink, start by opening the app and selecting the “Order” button.

Next, select the beverage you’d like to order.

You can scroll through the menu or make things faster by using the search feature and typing in the name of your drink.

Next, tap on a drink to select it and see its most common modifications.

If you’d like to customize your drink further, tap “Customize” for a complete list of modifications.

Let’s cover the different customization options available for Starbucks drinks.


The Starbucks app allows you to choose what size beverage you’d like.

The standard sizes are tall, grande, and venti, but some beverages are also available in smaller or larger sizes.

Read our article to learn more about Starbucks drink sizes.


For drinks containing milk, the Starbucks app allows you to pick from several dairy and non-dairy options, including:

  • 2% Milk
  • Almond Milk
  • Breve (Half & Half)
  • Coconut Milk
  • Heavy Cream
  • Nonfat Milk
  • Oatmilk
  • Soy Milk
  • Whole Milk


Using the Starbucks app, you can choose the sweeteners you’d like and how much of each you want in your beverage.

Sweetener is measured in pumps for liquid sweeteners and packets of powdered and crystalized sweeteners.

Starbucks sweeteners include:

  • Classic Syrup
  • Honey Blend
  • Cane Sugar
  • Honey
  • Splenda
  • Stevia in the Raw
  • Sugar
  • Sugar in the Raw


Flavored sauces and syrups are one of the most fun ways to customize your favorite Starbucks drink!

The flavor options available on the Starbucks app are:

  • Dark Caramel Sauce
  • Mocha Sauce
  • White Chocolate Mocha Sauce
  • Brown Sugar Syrup
  • Caramel Syrup
  • Cinnamon Dolce Syrup
  • Hazelnut Syrup
  • Peppermint Syrup
  • Raspberry Syrup
  • Sugar-Free Vanilla Syrup
  • Toasted Vanilla Syrup
  • Toffee Nut Syrup
  • Vanilla Syrup


Once you’ve created your perfect Starbucks drink, you’ll want to top things off!

The customization options for toppings on the Starbucks app include:

  • Cold Foam
  • Chocolate Cream Cold Foam
  • Salted Caramel Cream Cold Foam
  • Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Foam
  • Cinnamon Powder
  • Caramel Drizzle
  • Mocha Drizzle
  • Cinnamon Dolce Sprinkles
  • Whipped Cream


Using the Starbucks app, you can choose whether you want ice in your drink or if you’d like your barista to leave room in the cup.

Other add-ins include chocolate malt powder, vanilla bean powder, and the option to add a “splash” of any kind of milk (see list above).

Other Customization Options

Starbucks also allows you to add lemonade or extra shots of espresso to your drink.

In addition, you can select if you’d like your drink blended.

The Starbucks app also gives you the option to choose a cup size separate from your beverage size.

For example, if you want your tall latte in a grande cup, that would not be a problem!

3. Scan and Pay 

The “Scan and Pay” feature on the Starbucks app allows you to accrue rewards and pay for your order from your phone, even when you order inside the store.

The “Scan” feature will enable you to scan and receive your Starbucks rewards in-store and pay using a different method — even cash!

To use it, open your Starbucks app and select “Scan” at the bottom of your screen.

Next, select “Scan only” at the top of your screen, and you’ll see a personalized QR code.

Have the cashier scan this QR code before you pay for your in-store Starbucks purchase, then continue the transaction as you normally would.

Scanning your QR code will allow you to earn Starbucks rewards, or “Stars,” on your purchase, even if you didn’t order it through the app.

The “Scan and Pay” feature allows you to order in-store and pay right from your phone all in one move.

Follow the steps above, but select “Scan and Pay” at the top of the scan screen on your app.

When the cashier scans your QR code, not only will you earn Stars, but you’ll also pay for your order through your preferred payment method on the app.

If you haven’t added a credit card or Starbucks gift card to the app yet, you’ll have to add one to pay through your phone.

You’ll be prompted to link a payment method when you open the scan and pay feature.

4. Manage Starbucks Gift Cards

You can manage your Starbucks gift cards directly from the Starbucks app.

Your cards are visible under the “Scan and Pay” tab after selecting “Scan” at the bottom of your app.

From there, you can add new payments and manage existing cards.

If you’d like to link a new payment method, tap “Link Payment” and enter your card information.

To manage a Starbucks gift card on the app, tap the “Manage” button under the card of your choice.

You can set gift cards to auto-reload with your preferred amount of money, add gift cards to your digital wallet (Apple wallet for iPhone users,) and consolidate multiple Starbucks gift card balances onto a single card.

Adding money to your Starbucks card is simple!

First, press “add funds” under the card that you’d like to add money.

Then, make sure that it’s the correct card, select the amount you’d like to add, verify your payment method, and tap “Add.”

5. Send a Starbucks Gift Card

You can send a Starbucks gift card directly through the Starbucks app.

There are dozens of designs to choose from, and you can load the gift card with as much money as you’d like and email it directly to your recipient.

Let’s go through the steps of sending a Starbucks gift card through the app:

Step 1. Open your Starbucks app and select “Gift” at the bottom of your screen.

Step 2. There are dozens of different gift card designs to choose from on the Starbucks app in categories like “Birthday,” “Thank You,” “Teacher,” “Nurses,” and seasonal holidays. Browse through the selection of designs until you find one you like, and tap to select it.

Step 3. Choose the amount you’d like to load onto the card from the drop-down menu, then add a personalized message.

Step 4. Fill out your recipient’s name and email address, then tap “Checkout.”

Step 5. Select your preferred payment method and select “Buy and send” to email the Starbucks gift card to your recipient.

6. Get Starbucks Coupons, Promo Codes, and Offers

The Starbucks app is a convenient way to keep all your Starbucks promo codes and offers in one place.

You can find a complete list of your available offers under the “Offers” tab on the app.

From here, you can activate your offers and check your progress.

The Starbucks app also makes it easy to earn and track Starbucks rewards.

The fastest and easiest way to save money at Starbucks is by joining their rewards program.

You’ll automatically receive rewards points (called “Stars”) when you make qualifying purchases through the Starbucks app or if you use the “Scan” feature on the app when making purchases in-store (see above for details on the scan feature.)

Starbucks offers frequent discounts, promo codes, and games that can earn you more Stars.

You can find your Starbucks offers on the app’s home screen or by selecting “Offers” at the bottom of your screen.

Some offers will have to be activated by pressing the “Start” button before you can begin using them.

In addition, your progress will be tracked on the home screen and under the “Offers” tab.


The Starbucks app is a convenient way to order ahead and customize your Starbucks drink.

It also makes it easy to send and manage gift cards and earn and track your Starbucks rewards.

Once you’ve ordered, you can even use the Starbucks app to pay for your coffee!

If you’re looking for more information about Starbucks, check out the articles below.

Related Articles:

About the Author

Lauren Vigdor is a creative writer and hospitality professional with over a decade of experience in the food and beverage industry. She specializes in food and beverage writing.

Her book, “Drink Like a Bartender,” was written as a guide to help novice drinkers navigate the beverage world and was rated one of Forbes Magazine’s Best Bar Books of 2017.

November 16, 2022