There’s a large Vero supermarket a short walk from the bungalow I’m renting in Macedonia. I went there today for my first “real” shopping trip.
Yesterday, after I arrived, I bought a few things from a small Reptil supermarket. It’s even closer than the Vero supermarket but it lacks the variety of options. Although someone told me Reptil is cheaper than Vero, while I’m in Skopje I’ll probably do most of my shopping at Vero.
I normally go shopping every day and rarely fill the cupboards and fridge. However, when I move to a new home I usually have to do a slightly larger initial shop. I did that today at Vero.
I like the Vero supermarket. It seems very modern and clean. In my opinion, Vero is as good as any of the supermarkets in northern Europe, such as Jumbo (Netherlands), Tesco (UK), and Aldi (most countries in Europe).
The only thing I didn’t like was the lack of hand baskets. It’s a trolley or nothing. I’ve come across this set up in supermarkets all over Europe. It’s nothing new, but I prefer to use a hand basket. A trolley is too big and cumbersome.
In many countries you need to place a coin in your trolley to separate it from the one it’s locked to in front. That’s not the case with Vero supermarket trolleys. You can just grab your trolley and wheel it away. Nice!
The other main difference I noticed was with the carrier bags. They are much thinner than the carrier bags provided by the supermarkets in many other European countries.
In fact, I can’t remember the last time I had to transport my shopping in such a flimsy carrier bag. The carrier bags are free though. In most countries, they are not.
I’ve still got a few high-quality carrier bags I brought with me from Greece, so I’ll probably use those most of the time. I see it as doing my bit for the environment. I also have more faith in thicker carrier bags.
This may not be the case in other cities in Macedonia, Skopje is the capital, after all, but most supermarkets appear to be open from early until late, seven days a week.
Vero is open from 8 am to 10 pm every day. That’s everything I need to know. I’ll try other supermarkets out of curiosity, but I know Vero is the place I’ll be going to most of the time.
My Total Shopping Cost
I think my shopping bill worked out pretty cheap. According to my pre-move research, it’s cheaper to live in Macedonia than Albania. than Tirana. After taking a good look at some of the food prices in Vero, I’d say that’s probably true.
|5 x Potatoes (1.340 kg)||109||1.77|
|1 x Bag instant noodles (65 g)||15||0.24|
|1 x Tube (75 ml) Sensodyne Rapid Relief Toothpaste||299||4.85|
|700 g Jar beetroot||41||0.67|
|Box mixed salad||45||0.73|
|500 g Bottle spicy ketchup||55||0.89|
|500 g Bag brown rice||69||1.12|
|900 g Bag sugar (supermarket’s own label)||29||0.47|
|2.5 L Bottle of water||37||0.6|
|1.5 L Bottle fizzy mineral water||19||0.31|
|100 g Pack delicatesan meat (chorizo)||76||1.23|
|1 kg bag Frozen Vegetables||99||1.61|
|Ready Meal with sausage and baked beans||65||1.06|
|Box 10 Fish fingers (250 g)||37||0.6|
|800 g Bag Penga Fish (4 pieces)||48||0.78|
That seems like a lot of shopping for just under €17, but it would have been a much cheaper without the Sensodyne toothpaste. It was unbelievably expensive. I could have bought a tube of Colgate or another respected brand for a fraction of the price. That small tube of Sensodyne toothpaste cost me €4.85. I’ve bought it in other European countries for a much cheaper price. In Ukraine, a tube of Sensodyne toothpaste only cost me €3.93. That’s expensive for Ukraine too so I think Sensodyne must keep their prices unrealistically high. My teeth have been overly sensitive lately so it was a necessary expense. However, in the UK and the Netherlands I found much cheaper brands that worked as well or better than Sensodyne so I will be shopping around.
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