Georgetown - Post Report Question and Answers

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

Expensive, minimal, unreliable and poor quality in the grocery stores. "Fresh" items and dairy are left on shelves well past expiry dates, often into rotten stages. Frozen and chilled items have been allowed to melt and refreeze, likely a number of times if they are imported. All of these items are extremely expensive as well which is an extra kick in the gut. Items will be in stock for months and then suddenly disappear without reason at all of the grocery stores. There is no common sense in the ordering and stocking of grocery stores that the expats use. Recommend bringing as many regular pantry items from home as you can and plan to buy fresh/seasonally at the local markets. Beer and wine here is atrocious. - Apr 2024

If you aren't particular about brands, you can get most things here. You may have to visit several grocery stores and a market, but it can be done. However, you will pay 5x as much as the East coast of the U.S. or possible more. $15 cereal and $75/kg steak aren't uncommon. Everyone has a story about accidentally spending $40 on ice cream or something similar. Local cleaning and household supplies are heavily-scented so if that bothers you, budget for the American or French brands. - Jun 2022

Lots of produce and availability of expensive imported goods. Living here is not cheap, but there are ways to make it cheaper or more expensive depending on taste. Cost of living will only go up as oil boom continues. You can get beer (Corona/Heineken/Erdinger) and alcohol, some of it expensive but available. - Aug 2021

Local fruit, veggies, fish, shrimp and meats are reasonable. Imported groceries come with a higher price tag, but the variety of items available seems to grow everyday. Just about everything can be found lately, although it does often require more than one stop to get everything you need. Guyana is multi-cultural- so you'll find plenty of ethnic food offerings- to include Chinese and Indian spices. - Sep 2020

Processed foods from the U.S. and U.K. are generally available, although some products (e.g., stick butter) will vanish without warning for weeks at a time, and other products are prohibitively expensive (e.g., nuts, American breakfast cereal). Once you’ve lived here for a few months, you’ll learn the patterns of where and when to find just about everything you need, but, as with any developing country, you’ll get used to stopping at five to six locations to find everything on your shopping list. If you have school-aged kids, Amazon Prime will become like a weird wealthy uncle to them. - Aug 2019

Groceries are very expensive. Ship in as much as you can. Most items are available but at a considerable price and availability in hit or miss. - Sep 2016

Canned goods and basic groceries are good- you will pay ridiculous prices for some items and they will be inconsistent in availability- particularly some of the more specialized dairy items. There is one decent meat market. Goods are overpriced and it's good to ship in daily use canned items just because they are cheaper. - Apr 2014

Groceries, including American brands, are readily available and they are generally expensive. A pound of butter (four sticks) is US$6 to US$7. A Butterball turkey will be around US$90, while a ham will run around US$60 to US$70. By far the best butcher shop in town is Rossingnol Butcheries. It is run by Surinamese people. The cleanliness and selection are second to none. Most people obtain fresh fruits and vegetables from the open-air markets like Bourda Market. The pricing is generally cheaper than what one would find in the supermarkets; however, one will most likely be charged the "non-local" rate. - Nov 2013

It is expensive compared to the States. Plan to pay at least 30-50 percent more than you would at a Safeway for example. Some items will be more than this, especially anything that requires refrigeration. Even products grown locally are more expensive. - May 2012

Overall, stuff is imported and expensive. Some basics -- eggs, bread, flour, sugar, tropical fruits and local veggies -- are reasonable. Everything else is costly. Locally-made laundry soap, cleaning products, etc., are much more diluted than US products and you end up using a lot more, so you don't save money. If you need specific products for skin allergies, you need to bring them. - Mar 2012

Groceries are expensive here. You will regularly spend US$40 per visit for small stuff. EVERYTHING except the fruits and some local veggies is imported, and as Guyana has no deep water port, it has to be unloaded in Trinidad and reloaded onto smaller ships that can make it to these ports. This AUTOMATICALLY increases the shipping costs, which is passed onto consumers in the price. It's safe to say the price is usually double what it is in the US. You can get US goods that are imported directly from COSTCO or WALMART but it will cost double. Diapers are US$75 per box of 120, Toilet Rolls are expensive, Cereals are around US$7 per box. You will not find good cheese in Guyana. The wine selection is poor. To find everything you're looking for you have to go to three or four markets. There are no SUPERmarkets here. - Feb 2012

You can get just about anything here. Once in a while I stumble upon something I cannot find, like Heath candy bars, but it is the list of what is not available is that specific. Having said that, one often must visit several stores to find what one is looking for. Almost everyone goes to the main produce market (Bourda) for fruits and vegetables, leaving the actual supermarkets for imported and processed items. There are no large, American-style supermarkets, but the small ones that are here are good. - Feb 2010

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