Whether planning a Menorcan style paella lunch or BBQ dinner with friends and family, struggling with translation of products or looking to save money on the weekly shop for your holiday, shopping and eating well is the goal. If you are in self catering apartments or a private villa then choosing wisely on your supermarket shop can make a big difference to the final bill.
Here are some tips for dining in and supermarket shopping in Menorca.
- Compare prices
First step is to discover the supermarkets in your local area and take a look at a few prices of staple items to compare. Also ask for recommendations as to which supermarkets offer the best variety and prices. It is likely you will find you will choose one for a bulk shop and another for a few items the other didn’t have
- Make a list and do a big shop when you arrive
Try and get most of what you will need for your stay in one shop, with the aim to pop back for extras when you need them. Its much easier to budget this way too. Most supermarkets won’t let you take the trolly out of the shop so bring your own bags and enough helpers to carry them, or a car if you have one. Consider the distance you need to walk to home when you shop.
- Buy local products
Support the local industries and save money at the same time. If you find that some products you buy at home are very expensive in Menorca its because they are not sold locally and have been imported. You are paying for the importation and transportation of a foreign product. Wherever possible buy the spanish version, or balearic version of the same product. If you can’t live without your favourite brand, then bring it from home or pay the inflated price on the island. The local products are excellent quality and products of Menorca and the Balearic Islands are labelled in the supermarket.
- Supermarkets vs Hipermarkets
There are many small but complete supermarkets in the resorts, urbanizations and the centre of towns and there are also hipermarkets in the industrial areas surrounding the towns. Some supermarkets are well priced and have an excellent range of products, the convenience of having them within walking distance is of great worth on hot summers days. These supermarkets are mostly family run with locals working in them and local suppliers. Some supermarkets are more expensive, so you will need to see tip one and compare prices. Hipermarkets are bigger, but are at a distance, so unless you already have a car at your disposal and know where you are going, any percieved savings are spent in a taxi ride back to your acccommodation.
- Fresh Meat & Fish
Whilst most of the hipermarkets have a good selection of meat and fish, most of the small local supermarkets in the urbanizations have a limted supply. So if you are planning that big BBQ or paella lunch then you may want to take a trip to the local butcher or fish market for this special occasion. In doing so you will also support local farmers and fisherman and enjoy the authentic atmosphere of the markets whilst comparing prices.
- Cigarettes & Alcohol
All supermarkets offer competative prices for alcohol, so its worth shopping around. Cigarettes are no longer sold in supermarkets in Spain, only in tobacconists, in which every area has one or bars with machines. The legal age for buying both is 18 years old.