Would you rather: Pay 10 dollars or 3 dollars for paper towels?

by Mary Del Rosario
Stripes Europe

Recently, an image was shared among the KMC that sparked conversation. Globus had the ingenious idea to post the prices for similar products that were sold both in the commissary and Globus. Though not everything is comparable, there was a stark contrast between some products. For example, Mr. Clean Multi-Purpose Cleaner sells for $2.43 at the commissary. However, Globus sells the same product for $1.49.

Personally, I usually do all my grocery shopping on Sundays because like most people’s schedules, the weekdays are hectic. With Saturday being the only day when everything in Germany is open, I like to spend my time enjoying other activities as opposed to grocery shopping. However, most of my fresh meats and produce come from stores such as Aldi, Edeka and Globus. How do you know where to shop? Consider these factors before writing down your grocery list.

The commissary is perfect for:

· Those who live on base because it is conveniently located.

· Moments when you work on base and need to pick up a few groceries that you either forgot on your list, or for when need a quick meal.

· Those special products that you can’t find elsewhere. For example, I live for Snuggle dryer sheets and I can’t imagine not having the commissary to go to!

· When you feel homesick and want a taste of home. Whenever I miss home, I head to the commissary and just the sight of familiar products is enough to lift my spirits. Picking up a bag of Tostitos and Pace Salsa takes me back home to when my family and I would snack on     them while watching a movie.  

· Bulk items, especially for a large family. In my family, we are only two, so grabbing a large Tropicana doesn’t make sense for us. However, for a family of four, it’s perfect!

German supermarkets are perfect for:

· Fresh produce such as strawberries, cheese (many to choose from too) and other vegetables. The fruits and vegetables for sale are what’s in season, so you know they’re fresh.

· Everyday necessities such as water, paper products and dish detergent

· Broadening your horizons and trying different foods from Germany and all of Europe! After all, you’re in Germany and should experience living like a local. In Globus, I love buying Biscoff spread, which is similar to Cookie Butter from Trader Joe’s.  

· Meats and fresh poultry. Though the commissary offers fresh chicken, often times the red meats are frozen, which makes the meat lose some of its taste.

· Those who want to eat healthier. Though Globus and other supermarkets on the economy have their own freezer and ready-made meals section, it’s not as big as the one in the commissary. Most Germans make their foods from scratch and use real, healthy ingredients.  

Note: Don’t forget to use your VAT form in Globus! At the end of the month, you can take your receipts to them so you can be refunded the tax. Be sure to take your receipts to customer service to have it stamped beforehand after every visit.

Sometimes, we can get caught up in everyday life that we forget how lucky we are to be able to choose between shopping on base or on the economy. Enjoy the best of both worlds!


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