Whether you are going to be here for an extended amount of time or just for a few shorts days, you will probably want to know where to purchase food. Every country has different types of markets and stores that sell food, and as an outsider it can be a little difficult to figure these things out. We hope that this post will help you feel more confident about living in our city and navigating the grocery stores.
Here are 5 types of places where you can buy food:
Aldi & Lidl
These are your average grocery stores and are great for buying a lot of food at one time. If you plan too cook most of your meals, these stores will be very helpful for you because you can find all the ingredients that you need in one place. You can get a lot of food for a low cost at stores like these. They have a large selection of meats, cheeses, vegetables, fruits, snack and beverages. In addition, they usually sell different brands and different size packages for each of these items. If you are shopping for your weekly groceries, these are the stores to go to as they offer the greatest selection of foods at the lowest price.
Tesco, Spar, Centra
You will see these stores all over Dublin. They are very convenient because they have pretty much everything you need. Typically, the hours for these stores are much longer, some even staying open 24 hours. These stores have a wide variety of food options including, snacks, sandwiches, fresh produce, beer, ice cream, coffee, and baked goods. Usually they have a few options for different brands and flavours, but not a lot. If you need a quick lunch or some snacks, we recommend these stores because there a multiple locations across the city and they are usually open earlier and later than most other grocery stores.
You will find these stands scattered throughout the city. Usually they sell fresh fruits, vegetables, and sometimes flowers. They offer great deals on fresh produce that you usually wont find in any store, such as 5 apples for €1. The produce from these stands are always fresh and much cheaper than the grocery stores. If you want to purchase a lot of fruit or vegetables, find one of these stands because they are the cheapest option for fresh produce.
M&S Food Stores & Fresh
These are your upscale grocery stores. You can pretty much find any type of food at these stores, but you will pay a higher price at these stores. They offer a lot of specialty options, such as gluten free snacks, freshly made full meals, and delicate desserts. These stores do the best job of catering to those with allergies or dietary restrictions, as well. You will definitely spend more money on basic items at these stores, but you are paying for high quality food. If you are looking for specialty health foods or international brands, these stores will be the best option for you.
These are stores like Butcher Shops, Italian Grocery Stores, Candy Stores, and Asian Food Markets. These are much more specialised, but they have the best variety if you are looking for very specific types of foods. These stores may not be located on the main roads and there may only be a few in town, so you will want to look up where they are located and what times they are open. If you are looking for a specific kind of food, these specialty food stores are your best option for finding those foods you eat at home.
Just a few tips before you do your shopping:
- BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag)- Some stores will charge you extra for a plastic or paper bag. Even though it usually is only a few cents, that can add up in the long run.
- Make a list– This will help you to remember what you need and what you don’t. Just make sure you remember to bring your list with you!
- Plan it out– Try to plan how often you will be eating at home that week and realistically how much food you will need. This usually will help you end up with just enough food for the week.
- Try different stores– At first you might not know which type of stores will be best for you. Try going to each one of these stores to figure out which one best fits your food preferences and wallet!