The price of food and drinks, just like anything else out there, changes as time passes. Your favorite snack from childhood that might have been a dollar when you were a kid might now be twice or even triple that price. Going out to eat is more expensive than it was 10 or 20 years ago, movie theater popcorn is close to $10, and even a cup of coffee can put a dent in your wallet now. There are very few items out there that have stayed the same price, consistently, for years and years on end. There’s one exception, though: AriZona Iced Tea cans have always been 99 cents, and they’re always going to be 99 cents. Boom.
In a time when a Starbucks latte can set you back $7, it’s almost impossible to believe that you can still buy a large can of deliciously sweet AriZona Iced Tea for 99 cents — but it’s true! The brand also has no intention of changing that price in the near future, or maybe ever, which is something we can all be eternally grateful for. There are a few legitimate reasons why AriZona Iced Tea is always 99 cents, and honestly, these are the kinds of principles and guidelines we wouldn’t mind seeing in more brands. For now, though, we’ll just bask in the happy knowledge that AriZona Iced Tea is always going to be this cheap — and taste so good.
So how can AriZona charge only 99 cents for their iced tea after all this time? The people deserve to know the truth!
How does Arizona Iced Tea dodge inflation WHAT IS THE SECRET— Cig Mickelson (@GonzoSoriano) December 27, 2018
One: The brand avoids huge advertisements and celebrity endorsements.
Think about it: do you notice a lot of giant AriZona ads plastered all over billboards or AriZona commercials playing on television constantly? Nope.
Can you think of any celebrities who have been hawking AriZona Iced Tea in #sponsored Instagram posts? Definitely not. There’s a reason for that: to keep costs cheap for the consumer.
We've kept it at 99¢ since jelly sandals were fashionable! Your fave did THAT!— AriZona Iced Tea (@DrinkAriZona) August 1, 2018
In an interview with Thrillist, the AriZona Chief Marketing Officer and co-owner Spencer Vultaggio explained that the company purposely doesn’t advertise so that they can keep their prices low. Advertising is big money (so is using celebrity endorsers), and by skipping both of those techniques, the company saves big. Vultaggio said, “We feel like it’s more important to spend money on something that our customer really cares about, instead of buying billboards or putting our cans in the hands of some celebrity for a few minutes.” Works for us!
Two: They’ve made production efficient and streamlined.
There are also some behind-the-scenes things going on that keep costs low, and it’s stuff you probably wouldn’t normally consider. Vultaggio explained that they always incorporate new technology into their process: they process cans faster, they thin out the cans using less aluminum and more recyclable materials, and they move trucks at night to cut shipping costs.
They also haven’t changed the cans up a million times since the ’90s. Sure, AriZona as a company has released new products and made minimal changes, but the 99 cents cans still look and taste the same as they did when you were younger.
That kind of consistency keeps fans coming back for more, and probably also keeps advertising at a minimum. We’re here for it!
Three: They do their best to keep stores in check.
Why was I charged more than .99 cents for the Arizona iced tea that says .99 cents on the can— finessa_hudgens (@Finessa_617) December 26, 2018
Take a look at a can of AriZona Iced Tea: right there, in huge numbers, it clearly states “99 cents.” This is an attempt to keep stores from charging more for these drinks, which they will very often try to do.
Vultaggio said that they do everything they can to protect the “suggested retail price,” but “it’s hard to police it” nationwide. Still, we appreciate the attempt.
A wise man once said, "the price is on the can tho."— AriZona Iced Tea (@DrinkAriZona) June 12, 2018
And finally: They really, really want to keep their customers happy.
Just waiting to be cracked! 🙌🙌🙌 pic.twitter.com/8iVQ0CaUDW— AriZona Iced Tea (@DrinkAriZona) June 4, 2018
Sure, AriZona Iced Teas taste great and have a nice nostalgic element to them that will always keep consumers coming back for more. But the brand is also well aware that the low price point is a huge part of their success. Vultaggio said, “The cans are synonymous with 99 cents now. Our fans love it. They recognize it, and it’s a big part of our allure. People really do appreciate that. They’ve grown up with us, and they’ll always know they can head to their local store and our drinks will be 99 cents.”
Here’s to hoping AriZona Iced Tea never, ever changes. We’re pretty confident it won’t.