Move2Bulgaria tips to save you money in 2023
The retail business in Bulgaria splits into modern and traditional trade. Big supermarket chains are well-represented in most towns and cities. Popular international players include Kaufland, Lidl, Billa, T-market, CBA, and Metro. The first two are owned by the German retail group Schwarz. They operate in other eastern European countries and price comparisons of the same branded products may be possible with Kaufland Croatia for example.
1. Shopping around is still the best way to save.
Kaufland and Billa offer similar deals and discounts. Both retailers negotiate similar terms with their suppliers. If you prefer buying in bulk you can also consider Metro, the only big wholesale business in Bulgaria. Now you can do a virtual tour of most big supermarkets by visiting their website.
2. Try supermarkets’ own-label products.
Clever is Billa’s own value-for-money brand. The equivalent in Kaufland is known as K-Classic. All Clever branded goods purchased in Billa come at significantly cheaper prices compared to their branded alternatives. You would be saving somewhere in the region of 40% per shopping basket.
Price comparison in BGN between Clever and the equivalent branded product
3. Stock up and go bigger packs – better value.
Items worth purchasing in bulk and in bigger pack sizes are those with longer shelf life. For example, toilet paper, personal care products, fabric cleaning, dishwashing, etc. We estimated the saving generated by purchasing bigger packs is about 16% on average.
Savings on bigger packs compared to the equivalent smaller-size product
4. Sign up for their loyalty cards and apps.
All the main supermarkets operate their own loyalty cards, also available as smartphone applications. Signing up for them is easy and your can store them in one place using the Storcard app. See our Discounts section for more info.
5. Shop on promotion.
Brands rely heavily on promotions to drive sales. In a recent study, we found out the top 10 brands most often featured in Billa’s weekly brochure. One or more products of the following were listed at least once every week for a total of 35 weeks. For example, Orehite (Орехите) will include two sometimes even three different types of salami and rotate those each week.
If you only shop items from Billa’s weekly brochure you will be saving between 24% and 31% on average. Discounts per category are ranging from 37% for dishwashing down to 17% for paper.
The same or cheaper price is not always an example of good value. Imagine you are a brand loyalist, and you always purchase branded bar soap. Somehow, the company behind Dove has managed to keep the price of soap under control despite cost pressure. Well, do yourself a favour next time you visit the shop and look at the weight of the product too. You would probably notice Dove bar is now lighter, only 90 grams, down from 100 grams a year ago. Here are some other examples of the so-called shrinkflation. Businesses do this in order to maintain certain retail price points while their manufacturing costs are going up.
Notice: all of the above information represents data collected over a period of 36 weeks prior to 23/01/2023. Any changes since then are not reflected in the numbers.