What good-value items do you stock up on when you go abroad?

edited 24 August at 10:18AM in Overseas holidays & travel planning
24 replies 7.7K views
MSE_Laura_FMSE_Laura_F Community Admin
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MSE Scarlet brings back really tasty canned tuna from Spain, which she says is a totally different kettle of fish (sorry) to the UK's equivalent.

Similarly, Martin Lewis has talked about how you can buy Zara clothes at a fraction of the cost in Spain, Greece, France or Italy. If you're planning on going abroad anyway and had your eye on something from Zara, you're usually better off waiting until you're abroad to buy it.

I'd love to know...

Is there a particular item that - if you're going abroad anyway - you make sure to stock up on since it's cheaper or better value than here?
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  • edited 24 August at 5:56PM
    zagfleszagfles Forumite
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    edited 24 August at 5:56PM
    It might be worth updating that 2014 article to account for the fact we've left the EU and the rules are different - it appears if you buy over £390 worth of goods you have to declare them, although if you can prove they were made in the EU from just EU materials (not sure if that's true for Zara?) you may not have to pay anything, but you still need to declare and provide evidence.
    Personally, we generally travel hand luggage only so don't tend to have room for anything else!
  • BrieBrie Forumite
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    Knorr sauces in Germany are much nicer than the ones here.  Likewise any things that Benedicta make and sell in France - bernaise, salad dressing - very nice and cheaper than Waitrose.  

    And cigars.  A nice box of cigars in Germany  might be 25% of what they cost in the UK.  We used to go to Aachen on purpose to buy them from a particular store but the current limits on what we can come back with don't make this such an attractive option these days.
    "Never retract, never explain, never apologise; get things done and let them howl.”
  • WestinWestin Forumite
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    Brie said:
    Knorr sauces in Germany are much nicer than the ones here.  Likewise any things that Benedicta make and sell in France - bernaise, salad dressing - very nice and cheaper than Waitrose.  

    And cigars.  A nice box of cigars in Germany  might be 25% of what they cost in the UK.  We used to go to Aachen on purpose to buy them from a particular store but the current limits on what we can come back with don't make this such an attractive option these days.
    Funny you mention that. I thought it was just me that used to come back from Germany with the Knorr sauce and soup packets.  They do a nice soup with small noodles in which would always make a return with me following a trip to Berlin.
  • lea2012lea2012 Forumite
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    Air Fresheners for your car from Lidl Spain. They come in a little bottle with a wooden lid and hang from the rear mirror. €1.49 each and last ages!

    Lea :confused:
  • PollycatPollycat Forumite
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    When we used to holiday in India twice a year, I used to buy various cosmetic items - lip balm, hand sanitiser (we used this way before covid as the Indian notes were often grubby and a lot of people wanted to shake your hand), foot cream, pain relief oil, facial moisturiser cream for extra dry skin and winters.
    I used to pay the equivalent of 65p for the foot cream. I can buy it online for £5.99.  :o

  • edited 30 August at 5:13PM
    MSE_ForumTeam3MSE_ForumTeam3 Community Admin
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    edited 30 August at 5:13PM
    Thanks for mentioning the article date, @zagfles. It was updated on 11th July this year but I can see that the time stamps aren't the clearest.
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  • MSE_Laura_FMSE_Laura_F Community Admin
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    I love visiting Carrefour supermarket whenever I go to France. For one thing they have a massive range of big chocolate bars that we don't have over here. For another, you can buy the cosmetics range Le Petit Marseillais over there for a few Euros per item - cute handwashes and shower gels etc. It's available here via Amazon but is usually more expensive.
  • TucosalamancaTucosalamanca Forumite
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    Good value wines. 1.50euro bottles are excellent for cooking, something like a cheap Tempranillo makes quite a nice drink too (far better than £5-8 new world wines in UK).
    Mutti tinned tomatoes in France, half the price of UK, also Nutella and Bonne Maman jams.
    A week's shopping from E.Leclerc before we come home, as quality is so much better than anything here.
  • jon81ukjon81uk Forumite
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    Used to buy clothing and similar when in the US but due to the collapse of the dollar exchange rate recently its no longer good value.
  • munchpotmunchpot Forumite
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    I remember the pre-Covid, pre-Brexit days when we would regularly day trip to Le Touquet and on the way back stop off the the Auchan in Calais.

    Other brits had their trolley's full of booze, our was full of razors, LU Biscuits, Jars of Cornichons, Cheeses, toiletries and tin foil!

    Sadly those days are no more
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