Cheapest Supermarkets in Australia | Our Definitive List

From Best to Worst – What Are the Cheapest Supermarkets in Australia?

Ever wonder what the cheapest supermarket is in Australia?

If you’re like me, then it’s easy to walk past any ALDI, Woolies or Coles and get sucked into picking up a few items. It’s just so convenient, right? It makes life really easy when you need to pick up a snack or some extra supplies for dinner. But are we really getting the most bang for our buck? With cheap grocery shopping now available online – at any time – are traditional supermarkets still the cheapest place to buy groceries? Before we delve any deeper into the cheapest Australian supermarkets, if you’re looking for cash loans without all the fuss, check out what Nifty  has to offer you!

Leading consumer advocacy group, Choice, recently conducted a supermarket survey on almost 3000 Aussies across the country about their grocery shopping experiences. So, let’s find out which are the cheapest grocery shops!

Which supermarkets are in Australia?

Firstly, who are our contenders for the cheapest supermarket? The Australian grocery duopoly made up of Woolworths and Coles tends to be the most prevalent, with both stores situating themselves in the busiest areas. Although the list of contenders extends further than these two major players.

Ultimately, Queensland misses out on Foodlands and Harris Farmer Markets, who are leading the race for the most supermarket satisfaction in the country according to Choice’s survey in Feb/March 2019.

In 2001, ALDI also arrived in Australia armed with everything it needed to rattle the pre-existing market. By 2004, they had 54 stores across the Eastern states. Last year, in 2018, they announced that they had opened their 500th store in Australia claiming roughly 13% of the supermarket industry.

How does Australia compare to the rest of the world?

Cheap can mean different things to different people, but if we looking at the stats things are a bit clearer. The average Australian household spends $254.96 per week on their groceries. Seems like a lot don’t you think? Well it is. According to numbeo, food in the US is 24.85% cheaper, with the UK coming in at 12.25%.

Even Singapore, the most expensive country in the world is 18.52% cheaper than ours! But why is that?

Well, one of the downsides to living in this sunny little country of ours is just how far it is from the rest of the world. Importing the food we like is generally more costly, given the greater distances it has to travel.

As a result, even Australia’s cheapest supermarket can be pricier than most. So, in the end, it’s down to us to find the best value on offer.

So, which is the cheapest supermarket?

When it comes to grocery shopping, everyone has their preferences. Yet, according to Choice, the cheapest grocery store Australia has to offer is the European favourite – ALDI.

That’s right, ALDI is at the top of the rankings with the lowest average prices for you to fill up your shopping trolley. Just remember to bring your $2 coin or one of ALDI’s own imitating coins when taking out one of their trolleys or you’ll have to carry all of your items by hand.

I can’t get any – supermarket satisfaction

In 2018, Choice ranked Australia’s supermarkets in terms of overall customer satisfaction. So, in addition to telling you which is the cheapest supermarket, we’ve broken down where you can find the best value and service!

Produce

We all want the freshest and most delicious produce from our local supermarket, but apparently, Foodland wins out when it comes to quality!

Best supermarket for: 1st 2nd 3rd
Overall Rating Farm Markets Harris Costco
Range of products & brands available Foodland Farm Markets Harris Woolworths
Availability of locally produced foods Foodland Farm Markets Harris Costco
Quality of fresh produce Harris Farm Markets Foodland ALDI

Price

ALDI may be the cheapest supermarket but what other stores offer the most bang for buck?

Best supermarket for: 1st 2nd 3rd
Value for money Aldi Costco Foodland
Amount & availability of specials & discounts Costco Foodland Aldi
Availability of locally produced foods Foodland Farm Markets Harris Costco
Stock turnover Harris Farm Markets Foodland Costco
Product availability Foodland Harris Farm Market Costco

Accessibility

When it comes to convenience, we tend to think of cheap online groceries as the way to go. Yet if convenience is paramount to you, here’s where you should head when you need to just quickly pick up a few things from the shops:

Best supermarket for: 1st 2nd 3rd
Opening hours Woolworths Coles Foodland
Ease of parking Foodland Costco IGA/Supa IGA
Ease of locating items you want Foodland Harris Farm Markets FoodWorks

Shopper experience

Having a good or bad experience in a supermarket can be the deciding factor for where you choose to do your groceries. So here’s how our supermarkets rate on service:

Best supermarket for: 1st 2nd 3rd
Availability of staff when you need assistance Foodland FoodWorks IGA/Supa IGA
Helpfulness of staff Foodland FoodWorks Woolworths
Ease of use of shopping trolley/baskets Foodland FoodWorks Costco
Speed of checkout Foodland FoodWorks IGA/Supa IGA
Ease of checkout Foodland FoodWorks IGA/Supa IGA
Stock appearance & layout Foodland Harris Farm Markets Woolworths
Clarity of signage showing unit pricing Foodland ALDI IGA/Supa IGA
% would recommend Harris Farm Markets Foodland Costco

Other ways to save money on groceries

There’s more you can do to save money on your grocery bill than just shopping at the cheapest supermarket. Here are some things you should consider before your next trip to the grocery store.

Become self-sustainable

If you’ve got some extra space in your garden, why not try growing some fruits and vegetables yourself? Becoming self-sustainable can have a host of benefits, and it’ll all help cut back on the costs of buying your groceries.

Here are the best vegetables you can grow all year round:

  • Broad beans
  • Broccoli
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Cauliflower
  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes

Or you can try growing some fruit. Though the young trees will take time to fruit, in the long run, if your tree is healthy, you can expect to have more than enough fruit to feed your family and possibly even enough to share with friends! Try growing your favourite fruit from the list below:

  • Pears
  • Peach
  • Plum
  • Strawberries
  • Blackberries and Raspberries

Try the farmer’s markets

Don’t forget the weekend farmers markets to support local traders and grab some great bargains. Head down just before closing time for the best deals as suppliers want to get rid of as much as possible!

Visit your local butcher

Need a bag of snags for a barbie this weekend? Your local butcher will usually have the best deals when buying meat. Plus, the quality is likely to be better than your cheapest supermarket! Buying in bulk can help cut back the costs, so consider buying extra and just freeze whatever you don’t eat. Then you can just grab it from your freezer whenever you’re in need!

Wait for more competition

ALDI may soon have some competition for the cheapest supermarket title! German supermarket, Kaufland (ALDI’s arch-rival), are planning their big move to Australia which is set to cause a huge upset to the industry. So, prepare for some bargains! In 2017, they bought a large plot of land in an Adelaide suburb to allow for their first Australian distribution factory, despite objections from their existing competitors.

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Andrew Bell

Since founding Nifty in 2016, Bell has continued to make waves within the local financial sector for his continued ambition and willingness to adopt emerging technologies.

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