Nespresso has launched a subscription service that allows you to pay a monthly fee for a steady supply of coffee capsules – and get your Nespresso machine practically free upfront.
There are three 12 month plans to choose from – £18, £25 or £45. The fee you pay is converted into Nespresso credits which you can then use to purchase coffee capsules, snacks or accessories from the Nespresso website.
The plan you choose affects the type of machine you get. The most basic plan comes with a cheap and simple Nespresso maker – the Nespresso Essenza, while the pricier plan gets you a premium Nespresso Latissima model with automated milk frothing.
Read to to find out more about the different subscriptions and how the costs add up. Or you can skip straight to our Nespresso coffee machine reviews.
How the Nespresso subscriptions work
- For £18 per month you get an Nespresso Essenza Mini coffee machine, which you can pick up for £89 in stores. This model is new for 2017 and has replaced the Nespresso Inissia, which was initially offered in the two cheaper subscription packages.
- There’s no milk frothing accessory, so this option suits pure espresso fans best.
- Over the year you will pay £216. There is a £70 cancellation fee if you opt out early.
- £18 each month will get you either 50 coffee capsules (equivalent to around two coffees per day), or two boxes of financier cakes, or two cappuccino cups and saucers (or other selected accessories).
- £25 a month gets you the Nespresso Essenza Mini plus Aeroccino milk frother. This usually costs around £140 in stores.
- The milk frother automatically heats and froths milk for cappuccinos and lattes.
- Over the year you will end up spending £300. Cancellation costs £110.
- For £25 you can get 80 coffee capsules per month, or three boxes of financiers, or spend your money on selected Nespresso accessories.
- Spending £45 per month will get you the Nespresso Lattissima Touch, which costs around £280 from Nespresso, though you can find it for less than £200 if you shop around.
- The Lattissima Touch has a built-in milk frother that will automatically add frothed milk to your espresso to create cappuccinos and lattes.
- Over the 12 month subscription you will spend £540, and there is a £225 cancellation fee.
- £45 will get you up to 140 coffee capsules or up to six boxes of financiers, or, if you prefer, you can spend your monthly £45 on Nespresso accessories like espresso cups.
For all three subscriptions delivery is free if you order more than 50 capsules, and delivery of your Nespresso machine is free too. You don’t have to use your credits up every month, so you can save them up and use them for up to two years after your subscription ends.
Are Nespresso subscriptions a good deal?
While the appeal of getting a coffee machine for £1 is obvious, will you be saving money by subscribing to Nespresso?
On the face of it, this is a pretty good offer. The monthly cost is just a little above the cost of buying that number of capsules, and as you can save up your credits and use them after your plan has ended, you can get all your money back in capsules – in other words, you aren’t paying for the machine by stealth.
You are limited in your choice of Nespresso machine though, with essentially only two options to choose from out of a range of around 10 models.
We run each coffee machine we review through a taste test to rate the quality of the espresso and cappuccino they produce. We have discovered that the coffee machine you use affects the quality of the coffee you get from your machine, regardless of the quality of the coffee capsules you put in it. You want to make sure that the money you spend on first rate coffee capsules is being used in a coffee machine that does justice to your beans. We’ve tested and reviewed dozens of Nespresso coffee machines – you can see how they compare with our Nespresso reviews.
There are other capsule coffee brands to consider. Some have beaten Nespresso in our coffee machine tests too, so be sure to check our capsule coffee machine reviews to see alternative options.
What’s in it for Nespresso?
The new subscription model appears to be a fightback from Nespresso against the rise of Nespresso-compatible coffee capsules. These have gained popularity in recent years, and there is now a wide range of rival capsules available.
Some compatible capsules are available in supermarkets, which can mean they are easier to get hold of than Nespresso pods. Much like razor blades and printer ink cartridges, coffee capsule brands such as Nespresso thrive on the ongoing income an exclusive capsule system brings in, so it makes sense to try and keep coffee lovers wedded to Nespresso capsules instead of rival options.
See how Nespresso and compatible capsules compared in our 2017 Nespresso compatible capsule taste test.
Get Nespresso for less
If you don’t fancy adding another monthly fee to your bills, you might be better off shopping around for the best value Nespresso machine, and opting for compatible capsules. We tested a range of widely available options earlier in 2017 and found some tasty and cheap alternatives to Nespresso pods.
We calculated what you would save per year by buying our best cheap Nespresso-compatible capsule versus a Nespresso coffee capsule (based on two espressos per day). The £95 you save is enough to buy the Nespresso Essenza offered on the cheapest plan and still have some change left over.
Using Nespresso compatible capsules
This year we put 22 Nespresso and compatible capsules to the test with a panel of four coffee experts to find out if rival brands could turn out a tasty coffee. Check out the results of our coffee capsules taste test to find out which cheap compatible capsule was rated the best by our experts.
We used the same Nespresso machine to make hundreds of espressos and had no problems getting our Nespresso machine to work with other brands’ Nespresso-compatible pods. For advice and tips on using compatible capsules, see our Nespresso compatible capsule guide.