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Is coffee still an affordable luxury?

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According to market reports, the prices for coffee keep rising as does the demand, which means for most people coffee remains an affordable luxury. In other words, an extra five cents per cup isn’t making most of us balk at the counter. But with gut-wrenching gas prices, for those of us country folk who have to drive at least 10 minutes to the closest coffee house, getting there is half the battle.

My son is in preschool two mornings a week (I refuse to call it Mothers’ Morning Out… I’m working, not getting my nails done), and I used to drop him off and park myself at a nearby cafe without batting an eye. But now, even if it means my husband leaving for work an hour earlier, I’ll have him drop off Jed one of those days on his way to save me money on gas and coffee. Even when I drank my coffee at home and drove to our downtown office, I still had to pay for parking. When you factor in the child care and gas, an average morning of cafe working costs me $30. And I have to think about that when I consider that cup of coffee. I wouldn’t call it an affordable luxury, but more of a semi-doable sanity saver.

What does your cafe working time cost you? Do you still consider coffee an affordable luxury?