Grocery shopping in India has two very frustrating qualities.
1. All packaged items (ie. everything but produce) are marked with an MRP – Maximum Retail Price. This means that it costs the same no matter what store you go to. You might think that would be a good thing, but for a frugal girl like me, it’s quite frustrating.
Stores do run specials and markdowns. Usually it’s something like Buy 2 Get $.50 Off, but occasionally, it’s a flat markdown on one product. One store I shop at, More, has a flat 5% off MRP. How easy would it be to decide which store to shop at if you knew everything would be 5% cheaper? You would be free to consider other stuff like convenience and customer service! Sadly, I usually have to shop elsewhere as well, which brings me to my second complaint.
2. Even the Wal-mart type stores (called hyper markets) never have everything I need. I always come home with several things left on my list. I can’t even tell you how annoying this is. I’ve developed a hoarding “if I might need it, buy it now” attitude.
Here’s another type of grocery promotion that seems unique to India – buy one product, get something else free. For example, buy a bottle of floor cleaner, get a free hand towel. Not that this type of promotion isn’t present in the US, but it is very common here – the most consistent promotion I’ve seen.
The thing that’s really funny to me about this type of promotion is that the free item isn’t usually packaged with what you’re buying. The bagger notices and collects the free item from the front of the store.
This one cracked me up. I was looking for a bar of soap to make soap crayons (craft coming soon, if they turn out). I wanted a white bar of soap, but I couldn’t tell from any of the packages. So I picked this one just for the free jewelry.
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