Lagos - Post Report Question and Answers

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

Availability is unstable. US or imported goods are usually in poor condition (i.e., melted, expired, or crushed) and cost more than what they cost in the US. If buying the least expensive goods and only buying what you need for a week, groceries are about $150 a week for me and my spouse. - Mar 2024

You can get just about anything. A much wider variety of goods than I have seen in other postings, but you pay for it as everything is imported. For example, it's easy to get ethnic Indian and Asian ingredients. Everything for the most part is equal or more expensive than the US. - Aug 2020

You can actually find a lot of groceries and supplies in Lagos, the issue is that many imported brands, particularly American brands, are really expensive. Lagos has a few large western-style grocery stores and a number of smaller specialty grocery stores catering to expats. With those options at the commissary, residents have access to most staples and a few luxuries/goodies, though supplies are uneven. Dairy products are generally imported and fresh milk is not available. Wine is imported, you can sometimes stumble on some pretty high quality booze at a low price at one of the grocery stores. - Jul 2020

This really depends on how you shop, cook, and use your consumables allowance. For those who don't want to or have the time to think about it and are comfortable primarily shopping at the expat-oriented groceries (like La Pointe and Delis) purchasing imported everything, it's very easy to quickly spend hundreds of dollars a week; dairy, meat, and produce will quickly add up in cost. For others, who have the time and willingness to design meals around whatever they can get from Amazon, their consumables, and more local markets (particularly the produce market under Falomo Bridge), it can be very affordable, maybe about $45/week for two people? The latter model is a lot more workable in a two-adult household with only one person working, though, both because it's time intensive to shop at 3-4 places and because traffic really can be that bad. Though it was a pain, I really loved the mini-relationships I established with my preferred fruit and vegetable vendors at Falomo and the baker at XO Boutique Bakery. I supplemented with meat and Lebanese deli items from Delis and surprisingly affordable romaine and broccoli at the GQ (not reliably available unless you figure out exactly when it's stocked; when I left, that was Fridays around noon.) I also purchased a very nice cooler that fit into one of my pieces of luggage and filled it up with cheese/frozen items (berries, veggie burgers, Trader Joes dumplings) every time we were coming back into Lagos, which was both a big money saver and made cooking a lot more fun. - Jun 2019

There are a few expat supermarkets that offer most everything we could want, albeit at a lower quality and much higher price. - Aug 2018

You can find almost everything you need, but you might have to go to several stores to find it and you probably won't find the brands that you're used to (or you will pay a serious premium). Meat is expensive. Chicken is fairly affordable, but beef is either of dubious quality or very expensive, e.g., $30/steak. Dairy is very expensive. Local produce is generally available and affordable, but imported produce gets very expensive very quickly: $15 for a head of cauliflower, $12 for asparagus, $10 for broccoli. You do have to bleach your produce. - Mar 2018

Everything is available but everything is expensive. Amazon Pantry will be your friend. Locally-sourced meat such as chicken isn't too bad, but fresh fruits and vegetables are difficult to come by and risky to eat unless thoroughly and properly cleaned. Things like cleaning supplies, pet food, bathroom supplies, and kitchen basics can be found for a price. - May 2016

You can get most things here; it just depends on what you want to pay. US$17 for real milk, US$40 for freezer burned ice cream, US$6 for half a pint of strawberries, US$20 for a small filet of mediocre meat. Most people bring empty suitcases to the States on R&R and fill them with frozen food. They'll make it back no problem. Use that consumables shipment to the max! - Nov 2015

Three imported goods stores (Park 'n' Shop, Goodies, Game) carry almost everything one might need -- but for outrageous prices. LaPointe sells a good selection French cheeses. Most brands are European; some US brands are available, but at hugely inflated prices. Veggies tends to be old and small. Fresh vegetables and tropical fruit are better bought at the local market or fruit stand, where one can haggle. Regarding ethnic ingredients, one can get Indian and Mediterranean supplies, but very little Chinese, Japanese, or Latino ingredients. - Dec 2011

3 imported goods stores (Park n Shop, Goodies, Game) carry almost everything one might need but for outrageous prices. LaPointe sells a good selection french cheeses. Brands are European; some US brands available, again hugely inflated. Veg tends to be old and small. Fresh veg & tropical fruit is better bought at the local market or fruit stand, where one can haggle. Re: ethnic ingredients, can get Indian, Mediterranean supplies; very little Chinese, Japanese, Latino ingredients. - Sep 2008

Household help is very inexpensive, about US$150 a month for full time help. Cost of living here is outrageous. Everything from house cleaners, to the price of cheese is extrememly high and this summer will be higher due to shortages. - May 2008

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