Winter is trying to VISIT EVERY STARBUCKS IN THE WORLD.
His most recent journey started at the end of May 2009, and he hopes to add to his total of over 9,000 visited Starbucks stores (out of a possible 16,000+) by the end of his eight-month trip.
The biggest obstacle at hand? Starbucks’ recent announcement to close 200 more stores that included some locations that Winter hadn’t visited yet.
So Winter has hit the road, trying to squeeze in some more Starbucks visits (he calls it “Starbucking”) before those stores close. The good news in Winter’s favor is that he only wants to visit company-owned stores. No supermarkets, airport kiosks, or other franchise locations for him. That cuts the number of required visits down by a significant amount.
How dedicated is Winter in fulfilling his quest? What started in 1997 when Starbucks had just 1,500 stores has become a bit more complicated as the company expanded. He spent the month of April 2009 visiting 125 locations, ranging from Hawaii to British Colombia, California to Las Vegas. At the end of the trip, he received word that one Starbucks that he had purposely skipped in British Colombia was closing, so he spent $1400 to fly back there for a day and a cup of joe, just to add to his portfolio.
He spends about 25% of his earnings on his Starbucks mission every year, taking up three months of travel. He is a contract employee, so there are no work issues to worry about with that much time off. In his spare time when he’s not drinking coffee, Winter collects comic books and is a ranked Scrabble player.
You can follow Winter’s Starbucks exploits on his travel log and on Twitter.