It seems to be increasingly common to use the price of a take-away cup of coffee as a way of saying something is affordable - the most recent example I came across is that COVID tests, which were free in England until today, are now “less than the price of a takeaway coffee”, according to an article in the Guardian.
How much is a take-away cup of coffee? Like a lot of people with a good salary, I suspect, I had to look it up to be sure. I buy takeaway coffee, but I don’t really think much about the cost when I do. A basic Starbucks latte costs about £3. If you’re receiving Universal Credit in England, you’re on about £8 a day. In that context, this is not a cheap item. A (cheap) loaf of bread is about £0.40. So, perhaps a better unit of account here is that COVID tests have gone from being free, to costing the same as about 8 loaves of bread.