Grocery Shopping in Ireland (2024)

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Unfamiliar shops, brands, and products make the relatively simple task of grocery shopping a real challenge. This guide will provide you an overview of what is available in Ireland and what to expect.

Essential grocery shopping information:
  • SupermarketOpening hours
  • Sale of Alcohol Laws in Ireland
  • Convenience Stores in Ireland
  • Supermarkets in Ireland
Grocery Shopping in Ireland (1)

The range of supermarkets and their range of stock is much more limited in Ireland than you find in other countries such as the UK, USA and Australia. They are generally quite small in size but in the suburban areas they have much larger superstores.

You will need to pack your own groceries, which can be frustrating if you are used to being in a country where supermarkets pack them for you! Sometimes there will be a person raising funds for a charity assisting you to pack – so you will be obliged to put some coins into their fundraising bucket.

Tips

  • Cream cheese is sold as soft cheese
  • Risoni is sold as orzo
  • Flour used for bread making is sold as strong flour
  • Laundry detergent is usually labelled as ‘biological’ or ‘non-biological’. Confused which one is best for you and your family?Learn more about the pros and cons of biological and non-biological washing detergent.
  • Ireland has a plastic bag tax, so unless you want to pay for a bag, then remember to bring your own reusable shopping bag with you.
  • Discover the best shops in Dublin using this ultimate Dublin shopping guide.

Supermarket Opening hours

Many supermarkets are open 24/7 or have long opening hours like 08:00am – 10.00pm everyday. You can access individual store opening times on their websites.

Sale of Alcohol Laws in Ireland

Liquor is sold in supermarkets, however, off-licence sale of alcohol is only permitted between the hours of 10.30am and 10.00pm on weekdays and 12.30pm to 10.00pm on Sundays or St Patrick’s Day. Sales are not permitted on Christmas Day. This does not affect supermarket opening hours as they just block access to their alcoholic products outside of these permitted times.

Convenience Stores in Ireland

As well as the larger supermarkets, there are also small supermarkets and convenience stores in Ireland. These shops stock a small range of essential products. They are typically more expensive than shopping at the larger supermarkets. The stores include:

Supermarkets in Ireland

In order to use the trolleys at most supermarkets you will need to use a €1 or €2 coin. However, there special key ring tokens you can purchase to use in their place. The stores also provide small and large baskets that can be used without a token.

I have noted which stores offer home delivery and/or click and collect – a free service where you can purchase your products online and then choose which store you wish to collect them from.

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (2)

Aldi

German based chain, very similar to Lidl.

Products:Limited range, with a focus on staple items and a ‘no-frills’ approach to store layout. Mostly stock their own range of brands, however, they stock more branded products than Lidl. Their beauty product range, Lacura, has a cult following. It’s famous for beating its more expensive rivals by winning the best intensive anti-ageing serum. They also sell a lot of copy cat beauty products that emulate the more expensive luxury brands. Their Lunex tampons are a real bargain as well. Here’s my list of favourite Aldi products I can’t live without.

Similar to Lidl, in addition to its standard items Aldi has weekly special offers. Some of them are more expensive products such as electronics, tools, appliances, computers, through to cheap clothing, toys, flowers and gifts. Specials have strict limits on quantities and are available for one week or until they run out. You can sign up to their email newsletters to get an early preview of the specials.

Payment types: Cash, debit cards and also Visa/MasterCard with no additional charge.

Customer loyalty scheme:No.

Online shopping:No.

Website:aldi.ie

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (3)

Dunnes Stores(AKA Dunnes)

Small Irish based retail chain. Not all of the stores contain a supermarket, so check their website for locations.

It is not always obvious that the store contains a supermarket. Usually the supermarket department is down in the basem*nt or the back of the store – so you usually have to walk through their clothing department to get to it.

Products:Dunnes has a reasonable selection of products to choose from. They also stock their own branded products. The stores usually contain clothing, bedding and home wares but each store can vary what they sell, so check their website first to avoid disappointment.

Payment types:Cash, debit cards and Visa/MasterCard with no additional charge.

Customer loyalty scheme:Yes, called VALUEclub.

Online shopping:Not for their grocery department.

Website:dunnesstores.com

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (4)Eurospar

Dutch multinational retail chain. Small convenience style supermarkets.

Products:A small selection of branded products.

Payment types:Cash, debit cards and Visa/MasterCard with no additional charge.

Customer loyalty scheme:Yes, called SuperEasy Rewards.

Online shopping:No.

Website:eurospar.ie

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (5)

Lidl

German based chain, very similar to Aldi.

Products:Limited range, with a focus on staple items and a ‘no-frills’ approach to store layout. They stock their own products as well as branded products. Similar to Aldi, in addition to its standard items Lidl has weekly special offers, some of them on more expensive products such as electronics, tools, appliances, computers, through to cheap clothing, toys, flowers and gifts. Specials have strict limits on quantities, and are available for one week or until they run out. You can sign up to their email newsletters to get an early preview of the specials.

Payment types:Cash, debit cards and Visa/MasterCard with no additional charge.

Customer loyalty scheme:No.

Online shopping:No.

Website:lidl.ie

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (6)
Grocery Shopping in Ireland (7)

Marks & Spencer (AKA M&S)

UK based retail chain. Not all of the stores contain a supermarket, so check their website for locations. It is not always obvious that the store contains a supermarket, often it is in back of the store.

Products:Known as a luxury food store, they also sell a large range of pre-prepared food. They also sell niche items that you may not find in other stores.

Payment types:Cash, debit cards and Visa/MasterCard with no additional charge.

Customer loyalty scheme:No.

Online shopping: They offer ‘Food Boxes’ with essential basic items that can be delivered or collected.

Website:marksandspencer.ie

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (8)

Supervalu

Irish based supermarket chain.

Products:Supervalu stock their own brand of products as well as branded products.

Payment types:Cash, debit cards and Visa/MasterCard with no additional charge.

Customer loyalty scheme:Yes, called Real Rewards.

Online shopping:Yes. They offer both home delivery and click and collect.

Website:supervalu.ie

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (9)

Tesco

UK based chain store.

Products:Tesco has a broader selection of products to choose from. They stock their own brand of products alongside branded products. Some of the larger stores also sell their cheap clothing range and home wares, electronics, garden items etc…

Payment types: Cash, debit cards and Visa/MasterCard with no additional charge.

Customer loyalty scheme:Yes, called Clubcard. You can collect points not only with your grocery shopping, but also at other Tesco businesses and business partners.

Online shopping:Yes. They offer both home delivery and click and collect.

Website:tesco.ie

Grocery Shopping in Ireland (2024)

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