How would you describe the availability and cost of groceries and household supplies relative to your home country?
There were several stores which catered to the expat community, including Score, Marina, Cobra and Baaklini. Some American household and food products were available, but at a significant mark up (think $15 for a pack of poptarts), but most imported brands were European, and perfectly acceptable. Many people had their housekeepers purchase vegetables for them from the roadside vendors, as they were better able to haggle and get good prices. Fruit and vegetable availability was extremely seasonal - there was a broccoli season, a very brief strawberry season and a mango season. Meat from the four above mentioned stores was generally safe and good quality. Pork products were very limited, although occasionally available from the larger stores. - Apr 2020
Lots of shopping to do in different places. Cannot find everything in one place all the time. Decent choice of wine and cheese from France, fruits and vegetables are seasonal. - Jul 2019
Groceries are expensive compared to the US. The majority of items are imported. Prepare yourself and kids for UHT milk and yogurt. Excellent butter is always available, imported from France. The beef is surprisingly lean and good. - Oct 2017
Local groceries are cheap, although the selection is not fabulous. Imported goods are outrageous, but lots of options are available. - Oct 2017
Cow's milk like many countries is not available unless unpasteurized milk by a local farmer. Most shipped foods and cleaning products are from France, Spain, Lebanon, Egypt and Israel. If you see it and like it and it won't spoil for quite some time time, buy several; inventory of stores is not often replenished so the choices vary depending upon whatever was shipped at the time. Once I went to four stores to find butter... Refrigerated foods can be questionable if the coolers were actually running cold enough to keep it at a safe temperature; warm cheddar bad... Stores often have to decide whether to run A/C in the store or run the refrigerator/freezer at low safe temp, sketchy electricity throughout the city. - Aug 2015
Expect nothing, but you will find there are some good options -- though nothing is certain. Sometimes the only fruit available are apples and mangoes or bananas. Some decent cheeses are imported from France. Other things are also imported, so it is generally marked up in price, and the heat often takes its toll on the goods. Get a good cook and have them shop, cook and clean for you. Go to grocery stores for fun on the weekends just to see what you can find. - Jul 2013