Gatwick Airport is hoping to drastically cut back on wastage by rolling out a month-long trial that’ll provide travellers with either free reusable cups or a small-cost paper cup.

The sustainable initiative rolls out this month along with Starbucks that’ll see free reusable cups handed out at the South Terminal location or papers cups purchased for around five pence.

Should customers choose to use a reusable cup, they can enjoy their coffee or hot beverage and then drop the cup off at five locations in the terminal before boarding their flight. Gatwick staff will then collect the cups, wash them and return them to Starbucks for reuse.


Image: Viktor Forgacs/Unsplash

The new program is an extension to Starbucks’ existing environmentally-friendly initiative that saw the coffee giant implement a paper cup fee in shops around the UK. According to CNBC, proceeds from the charge are being donated to Hubbub, a charity that funds reusable cup trials and other projects.

Starbucks’ Senior Manager of Energy and Sustainability, Jaz Rabadia, said the purpose of the program is to create a new culture of “reusable on-the-go” options for customers.


“Our goal is to save 7,000 disposable cups over the course of the month to find out the best ways to drive reuse where it is typically harder to do so – such as airports.”

Jaz Rabadia, Starbucks Senior Manager of Energy & Sustainability

Gatwick’s head of sustainability, Rachel Thompson, welcomed the initiative, saying it was the perfect fit for the gateway’s environmental plans.


What are your thoughts on the news?