Every day up to 7 million coffee cups are thrown away across the UK, with less than 1% of these cups being recycled. Gulp! The tricky issue is the mix of the plastic film on the inside of the cups which needs special treatment to separate and recycle, plus the dregs of coffee can cause contamination - this video explains all.

Work is underway to increase the recycling of disposable cups. 'The Square Mile Challenge’ campaign collected and recycled 5 million cups in the City of London in 2017. Brands like Circular&Co have also developed a way to recycle whole coffee cups in one go so they can do a full loop and be recycled into reusable cups.

The issue of recycling disposable coffee cups on-the-go is a tough nut to crack, so we're supporting the trial of Starbucks 5p cup charge, which hopes to encourage customers to switch to a reusable coffee cup. Switching to a reusable cup isn’t always easy, convenience is king and it’s easy to forget, so here are our 4 top tips of how to make a smoother switch:

Find your perfect match

No one size fits all, and no one cup suits everyone. The multiple designs and styles means you can truly espresso yourself and feel good about using your reusable cup. Ecoffee Cup patterns include a William Morris range, and KeepCup allow you to choose from a range of sizes and vibrant colours. Circular&Co let you go full circle with reusable cups made from recycled disposable cups. The Independent has listed their top 9 reusable coffee cups, and provides a neat review of the different features.

On the move

If carrying an empty reusable cup around puts you off, don't let it! There are alternatives. Foldable Cups such as the Stojo collapsible cup are made from silicone are perfect for a jacket pocket or a stuffed handbag. If you need a cup that’s leak-free and robust enough to survive the rigours of commuting then you may want a heavier, non collapsible cup with a locking system such as the Contigo, which will also keep your coffee warm for hours. If you’re worried about spillage you could keep your cup in a bag in your bag!

Tips for remembering your cup

If you're the forgetful type, try customising a reminder on your phone that will alert you the same time every day to remember it. Out of site means out of mind, so keep your cup visible next to other important ‘must remember’ items like house keys. It might be that you have a reusable cup at the ready in several places – on your workdesk, stashed in the car - so you’re less likely to be caught out.

Where to get the cheapest coffee with a reusable cup

Starbucks are the first UK coffee chain to trial a charge on disposable cups, alongside their 25p discount. Their reusable cups for £1 are the cheapest on the market. Several chains offer decent discounts. Patisserie Valerie and Pret will give you 50p off, which means a cup of Pret filter coffee can be yours for just 49p. Caffe Nero technically offers the next best discount with it’s double loyalty stamps. if you bought five regular cappuccinos at £2.35, the free drink would effectively save you 47p per coffee.

What do you think is the best reusable cup? Tell us in the comments below.

Need a reminder of why coffee cups are so hard to recycle? Check out this vlog: