Starting Saturday, if you want to smoke near a Starbucks, you'll have to keep your distance.
The Seattle-based chain says it will start banning smoking within 25 feet of its stores.
Cliff Elome, the store manager at a Starbucks in Miramar, is already giving people a heads-up.
“So we have this sign, we pretty much put it out today. It actually starts tomorrow but this is just letting everybody know what’s to come," Elome said. "Starting tomorrow it’s going to be a completely smoke-free environment.”
Stacy Jacobs is a loyal Starbucks customer.
“It is a big deal," she said of the change. "Sometimes we don’t even sit outside because of the cigarette smoke, so it's nice to be able to sit where you want."
For many smokers smoking and drinking coffee go hand in hand, but Starbucks says all it's trying to do is extend its indoor non-smoking policy to outdoor seating areas.
Elome said it will definitely be a win/lose situation for his customers.
“Win, because we’re going to have a lot of customers that do enjoy a smoke-free environment, and lose, there are customers that do enjoy their cigarettes when they come here so you know they might not want to come back," he said.
The new smoking ban will apply to all 7,000 cafes owned and operated by Starbucks
Corp. regardless of whether they have outdoor seating areas.
“It's going to be pretty much a challenge for us maybe the first month, just having people a little bit disappointed coming in, wanting to enjoy their cup of coffee with a cigarette, but I think after a while it's going to work itself out," Elome said.
More Local Stories: