Shopping and Groceries
When moving to a new country, it can be difficult to know where to shop to find necessities. This article will familiarize you with some of the common stores in the Netherlands
The Netherlands does not commonly have 24/7 or late-night stores. Stores such as clothing stores and furniture stores are generally open until 17:00 or 18:00 in the evening. Grocery stores are open longer. Usually, they are open from 08:00 - 20:00 or even 22:00. On Sundays, some stores may be closed or only open from 12:00
You can choose to buy your groceries from supermarkets or from local stores such as greengrocers, bakeries, butchers etc. You will find these - mostly privately owned - shops in most neighbourhoods, clustered together.
Below is a list of major supermarkets in the Netherlands:
There are also online grocery stores that offer home delivery.
You can find an overview of grocery stores in Nijmegen here.
Spaar kaarten and Koopzegels
Most Dutch grocery stores have a system with savings cards (spaarkaart) where you can collect stamps (koopzegels) to save a bit of money on your shopping. Every time you shop you pay a little extra on your groceries to buy a koopzegel. When you have filled a spaarkaart with these stamps, who can cash out the spaarkaart for the full value of it with some interest. Sometimes this can be done for cash and other times just to pay for your groceries in the same store. A more in-depth explanation can be found here.
No free plastic bags
Because of an environmental law you will always have to pay a small fee for a plastic bag at supermarkets and other stores in The Netherlands. Some stores have paper bags that are for free. Of course you can and are recommended to bring your own bag.
If you are moving into an unfurnished home when you move to the Netherlands, you'll need to know where to get some furniture. Ikea has affordable furniture options available for home delivery. Leen Bakker is a Dutch furniture store at a slightly higher price point than Ikea. Coolblue is a store that sells electronics and appliances such as washing machines.
WelcomeToNijmegen.nl has a list of affordable furniture stores in Nijmegen, most of which delivery to your home for a small additional fee.
Below is a list of some other miscellaneous stores that you might find useful to know when you first move to the Netherlands.
- Action - an affordable general store that has a mix of household items and some groceries
- Blokker - sells cleaning supplies, kitchenware, appliances and other household items
- Praxis - a hardware/DIY store
- Etos - a drugstore (personal care items, hygiene products, over the counter medicine)
- Kruidvat - a drugstore (personal care items, hygiene products, over the counter medicine)