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Adapting for Special Needs Overseas - Call for Essays

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How would you describe the availability and cost of groceries and household supplies relative to your home country?

As others have said, if you eat local and seasonal food, expenses are dirt cheap. There are many local corner stores that sell fresh produce and household supplies for a pittance. Larger grocery stores (Marjane – similar to a WalMart – and Carrefour, among others) have almost anything you might want and are regularly well stocked, though more expensive (but not like US prices, in my experience). We have a commissary about 15 minutes' drive from the Embassy and a quick shop and cafeteria (with surprisingly cheap prices) at the embassy that provide much that you can't otherwise find on the local economy. - Oct 24, 2017
If you eat locally and seasonally, food is dirt cheap. Fresh produce, meats, and fish are all available at the supermarkets, and there are many local markets selling all kinds of food - fruits & vegetables, meat, fish, grains and spices.

Household supplies are also inexpensive, but sometimes the quality can be sub-par compared to the U.S. Diplomats have access to a commissary, and a wide range of U.S. products are available there for a small premium. - Oct 23, 2017


Groceries are inexpensive, especially if you buy produce that is in season, availability of products is decent. - Aug 29, 2017
More expensive than in the U.S. except for the lovely organic produce which is cheap,seasonal, and abundant. The ECA commissary has a wide variety of goods available and has been a huge boon for our tour here. They can special order cases of virtually anything and keep a ready supply of U.S. products at a premium. It may cost more but I don't mind when I have the comfort foods I crave at my fingertips. - Jul 20, 2014
The local grocery stores are good for a developing country, supplemented by butchers, fruit/veggie stands, fish stores, food markets and bakeries. You can get a lot of great stuff if you are willing to cook like a local (same ingredients at least). If you want more obscure ethnic dishes, you can online shop or use the (American) commissary or bring stuff back from Spain or elsewhere. As an example, it is possible to get rice noodles and rice paper (for rolls) here at local grocery stores, as well as (mediocre) chips and salsa -- which you couldn't say about many posts. - Nov 17, 2011
You know, pretty expensive. Milk (UHT) is terrible. If you can find Presidente (french) brand anything buy it, because it's that much better. Anything made in Morocco became suspect. The quality was just not there. - Nov 16, 2011
The supermarkets have most items you would need during your stay. The meats are good, there is fresh pasteurized milk, cheeses, great fruits and vegetables and many American products including Duncan Hines and Hagen Das. Groceries are a bit more expensive than the US. - Sep 18, 2011
Although many items such as produce are relatively cheap and of good quality, other items can be expensive. The ECA is getting better and provides many of the basic items you would need, although somewhat expensive. - Apr 8, 2010
Moderate. Some things are difficult to find (cheddar and american cheese, peanut butter, etc) but you can usually find them periodically at the commissary. Prices at the commissary are increasing because of transportation costs. Sometimes online is cheaper. - Jun 3, 2008