best UK Coffee Subscription: 7 Services you'll love
An online coffee subscription will improve your life. But sign up to the wrong one and you'll waste money and time.
You see: each subscription caters to a different type of coffee drinker. So before signing up to the one you need to know what type of coffee drinker you are and then choosing the right one will be easy. Do you want to try exotic new coffee every week? Or do you want someone to match you up with the high quality roasters who will make recommendations for you?
What you'll learn below: what type of coffee drinker you are, and exactly which choice(s) from the list below is the best coffee subscription for you. Choose correctly and you'll be smiling each morning as you raise yet another perfect cup of coffee to your lips. What's even better is that we've managed to secure some unique discount codes for Home Grounds readers too.
Read on to get the best deal on the perfect coffee subscription service for you.
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Coming in at #1 is our personal favourite for the adventurous…
1. Pact Coffee
“When you’re ready for a subscription that is highly customisable, delivers top-quality coffee and is sustainably-sourced from farmers who earn above Fair Trade rates”
Pact Coffee provide a selection of the best quality beans from all around the world. They also offer options for different budget levels. They don't just deliver kickass coffee, they also take social responsibility very seriously. They ensure that all their coffees are sourced ethically and that all everyone in their supply chain from farm to cup is fairly compensated.
How it works:
You’ll select either pods, whole beans or your preferred grind size. Then, choose beans from the house, select or micro-lot ranges and your preferred country of origin. Finally, pick how often you need it delivered. You can change your preferences at any time on your account page. Try to get your order in before 1 pm to qualify for free next day delivery.
They buy directly from the farmer allowing them to earn 25 to 125 per cent above Fair Trade rates
Customers love Pact because they can choose their favourite coffee type, roast, grind size, range, and delivery frequency for either the home or office. They also like that by paying the farmers in their supply chain greater than Fair Trade wages, Pact ensures better coffee for customers and a higher quality of life for farmers.
- Our Pick for 2021
- Amazing, rare micro-lot single-origin beans sourced from all over the world
- Company cares about environmental impact and gives back to the producers
- Prices start at £6.95 (but you can take £5 off with this link)
- Shipping locations: UK only
“Best for adventurous coffee drinkers who love to try different coffee varieties and tasting notes”
Blue Coffee Box works with more than 300 different roasters who source from some of the world’s leading green coffee buyers. You'll never get bored as they deliver new and exciting coffees every month. Furthermore, all their coffees
How it works: You’ll choose your coffee bag or box, choose whole bean or a grind size, indicate your roast level (light, medium, dark, or ask to be surprised), and then let them know your delivery frequency. You can change or end your subscription anytime.
We love Blue Coffee Box for their completely customised coffee pouches, at affordable monthly prices
Coffee lovers love Blue Coffee Box because they are experts in sourcing quality coffee and they handpick coffees from the finest roasters in the UK.
- Extremely picky sourcing from the best coffee roasters across the UK
- Supports ethical coffee only (they carefully vet the sourcing of each roaster they work with and only use coffee bought by the Direct Trade method)
- Feels like you have an expert coffee sourcing advisor handpicking great coffee for you.
- Prices start at £7.99
- Use code HG50 at checkout to get an exclusive 50% discount
- Shipping locations: Worldwide
“Best for those who want a quick and simple service that delivers great coffee without having to choose from 100 different options“
How it works: You’ll choose your subscription (i.e. a Roast of the Month, with either a Single Origin or Espresso option for the month), then decide your frequency (weekly, fortnightly, or monthly). Finally, select whole bean or ground (only Single Origin offers a choice; Espresso subscriptions are all whole bean only).
What people love about the Clumsy Goat: Customers love The Clumsy Goat’s great prices and smooth, rich flavours. They are known for their quality and reliable consistency.
- Enjoy 100% Fair Trade coffee subscriptions, roasted weekly for freshness
- Try their ‘Roast of the Month’ subscription, featuring a new coffee at your door each month with weekly, fortnightly, or monthly delivery and no shipping fees
- Flat rate of £8.95 per month
- Free delivery in the UK
- Shipping locations: UK only
“Best for curious coffee drinkers who thrive on new tastes and experiences“
Customers love Perky Blenders because they offer sustainably-sourced speciality coffees at a great price point in their subscriptions. Subscription boxes come in stellar packaging that preserves freshness and fits perfectly through the letterbox.
How it works: You’ll choose your coffee, pick your grind size, and then decide how often you’d like it delivered. Opt out at any time by logging into your account, or simply let it auto-renew if everything is to your liking.
Most popular option: Perky Blenders coffee of the month subscription delivers top of the line coffee on a monthly basis. They take their subscription service very seriously; if the coffee isn't good enough for coffee snobs, it's not good enough for their subscription boxes.
- Freshly roasted coffee from one of London's most widely loved specialist roasters and coffee shops
- Select from several choices of subscription, like the three, six, and twelve-month clubs, four-week variety club, gift subscriptions, and more
- Pick from their signature blend, single origin or a hand-picked coffee of the month
- Decaf option for those with caffeine sensitivities and late night coffee drinkers
- Prices start at just £6.50 per month
- Shipping locations: Worldwide
“Best for coffee lovers with a higher budget“
How it works: Choose a subscription for yourself or a gift, then pick your preferences on bag size, delivery frequency, total length of time to receive deliveries (up to a year) and your favourite type (i.e. Red Brick, Filter Blend, etc.) Coffee is always shipped as whole bean from Square Mile Roasters
Square Mile pride themselves on the quality of their coffee. Their founder is renowned for his pickiness, so nothing but the best of the best will do for them. They offer the choice of their house signature blend or a curated selection of coffees that changes from month to month.
The Hoff [James Hoffman] set up the company to improve the quality of coffee in London and he's gone and damn well succeeded
- A curated subscription product for coffee lovers by coffee lovers
- Every order is roasted fresh
- Beautiful packaging that includes an information pack about each coffee you receive
- Prices start at £14
- Shipping locations: Worldwide
“Best for those who just want to find their perfect coffee choice and have it sent to them on repeat“
How it works: Once you sign up, you fill out a simple quiz that helps you choose. You can choose for a curated pick, a coffee based on your preferred flavours and tasting notes or to simply choose the exact coffee you want to receive. Then simply decide how often you want it delivered and whether you want whole beans or ground based on your brew method of choice.
UnionRoasted is one of the most popular options in the UK coffee subscription game. The They sell great tasting coffee and a selection that even the most curious of coffee drinkers will not get bored by. Unfortunately, they only ship within the UK, so users in Ireland and Europe will have to go elsewhere. UnionRoasted is popular because they score VERY highly for user experience. They walk you through a short, interactive quiz to find the best option for your needs. They also provide plenty of information about their coffee and how to best brew it.
- Easy to order with: fill out a quiz, get coffee sent, and start brewing
- Fully customisable based on preferred roast and tasting notes
- Prices start at £10.95
- Shipping locations: UK only
“Gold class (aka best for true coffee snobs)“
Blue Bottle Coffee's subscriptions are for coffee enthusiasts who know what they like and want expertly roasted beans from some of the best lots in the world. But It's more like regular home delivery for the same products you could buy in-store than a curated coffee box. They offer decaf coffee subscriptions and ship internationally to a shortlist of countries, for now. We dove deep into the blue bottle coffee club recently. Read our full blue bottle coffee subscription review here.
How it works: Unlike with many coffee subscription boxes on this list, you’ll have to choose the coffee for yourself (though they do have a quiz to find your coffee match). They offer subscriptions to any of their 8 blends as well as espresso, blend and single origin assortments. Blue Bottle is always a good choice, and their subscription is no different.
- You get sent high quality coffee beans from roasters you know and like.
- More like a regular home delivery of quality beans
- Gold class in sourcing and roasting
- Prices start at £7
- Shipping locations: UK, Australia, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Switzerland and USA.
How To Choose the right coffee of the month club
Today if you look for a coffee bean subscription online you'll be overwhelmed by the number of options. Here are a few pointers that will help you navigate the landscape of coffee subscription services available, so you can choose the right one:
Does the Coffee Subscription fit your desires?
As a coffee drinker, the first thing you should consider is, naturally, the coffee itself. What coffees does the coffee subscription offer? Where do the beans come? How do they source their beans?
In terms of your desires, there are two different approaches you can take:
- If you like trying lots of different coffees, look for a coffee subscription box that ships you new coffees (new to you) each time.
- If you already know what you like, look for a coffee of the month box that offers subscriptions for the type of coffee you know and like it.
Before choosing, make sure you're clear on what you want. Is your priority freshly roasted coffee? coffee delivered quickly? or a service that will help you find your favourite coffee? Each coffee club has a strength, and it's your job to match your order with that strength.
How much can you customise? (And do you even want to?)
The best UK coffee subscriptions allow you to customise your experience while others offer fixed options. These are curated by professionals but often fairly inflexible.
Want to be active in choosing? Look for a coffee of the month club that tells you what types of whole bean coffee will be sent to you in advance, and will allow you to pick and switch varieties or roasts. Some services will tell you what’s coming in the mail, but won’t allow you to make changes.
Want the company to decide for you? Choose a service that curates coffees and roast types based on your preferences/feedback to a sample box. This is the best way to try beans that the coffee professionals at each coffee box company believe are truly great. You should also consider if you want them to grind for you or not.
How will it be delivered?
Obviously speed is of the essence, because freshly ground coffee is better.
Consider the frequency of coffee delivery: the better companies offer a few different schedules (e.g weekly, bi-weekly or monthly coffee deliveries). If you want a new bean delivered straight to your door every week, but the service offers monthly shipments, it ain't going to make you happy.
How much coffee do you need per week? Look for a company that will get you as much as you need, but no more. There’s no point in getting a delivery each week if you take two weeks to get through a bag of coffee. Conversely; few things are as annoying as running out of coffee.
Do they sell Fair Trade Coffee?
Most coffee-of-the-month clubs on this list emphasise paying farmers fair prices for coffee and supporting sustainability all along the supply chain. Paying farmers fairly means supporting them to grow better coffee and improve practices, but exclusively fair trade subscription services aren’t the only model (3).
Some companies on this list view fair trade prices as too low to support farmers.
This is of course up for debate, but many companies that are not technically fair trade coffee subscriptions instead verify the farms’ practices firsthand and pay them directly. This also allows companies to ensure the coffee is of the highest quality.
It also goes without saying that you should consider quality – you want coffee better than what you'd find at the supermarket, but that's a given.
The Bottom Line
Good coffee starts with good beans. Sure, starting with a list of great coffee beans can work, but the above UK coffee subscriptions make choosing great coffee even easier.
This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to coffee subscriptions. The market is saturated and unfortunately, they are not all great offerings. This list has been curated by coffee lovers, for coffee lovers, and we update it a few times a year. In summary:
Pact Coffee club is the best overall subscription in 2021. They handpick coffees from small lots all over the world, roast them and ship them to you. You drink amazing coffee and learn about the culture in the process. The other options on this list are all great choices, so choose whichever feels right as you read our reviews. Happy coffee drinking!
- Rosenacker, J. (2017, July 11). Our Coffee Bag Designs – Atlas Coffee Club. Retrieved from https://club.atlascoffeeclub.com/coffee-bag-designs-atlas-coffee-club/
- Grambush, J. (2017, October 23). A Brief History of Coffee in Seattle. Retrieved from https://theculturetrip.com/north-america/usa/washington/articles/a-brief-history-of-coffee-in-seattle/
- Baggini, J. (2015, February 23). Why are foodies turning their backs on Fairtrade? Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2015/feb/23/foodies-fairtrade-sales-quality-ingredients-terms