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Co-op grocery prices

We will be staying four nights in an airbnb in Wengen. I expect we will eat most breakfasts and dinners at the house and pack picnic lunches for hikes. We will be arriving by train from garmisch Germany . Are the prices at all co-op stores the same or are items more expensive in the smaller towns? I'm just wondering if we should stop off in Interlaken and get groceries before heading into Wengen? Is the Coop Near the main train station? Someone even suggested we purchase groceries in Germany as it will be significantly less! Thanks

Posted by
11487 posts

Buying groceries to take on the train seems like a hassle to me, ditto Interlaken. You might save a couple of Swiss Franks buying in Interlaken, but do you really want to spend your travel time chasing a couple of dollars? You are already economizing by having a place where you can prep food and dine in. Make it easy on yourself and shop daily like a European.

Posted by
271 posts

The prices are not the same but very close. A Co-op in Zermattt, Muerren, and Luzern will have very similar prices.

The rub is selection. A tiny grocery, and the ones in the smaller towns/villages are t-i-n-y, with a selection that reflects the difference in size between a large grocery store at the airport or train station and a small one measuring as little as 20'x30' (think small Downtown NY grocery with narrow rows of shelves and room for only one cart--no in-lane passing). I eat gluten free and this is very important to me. I also typically travel via car, so a little 'stocking up' is never a problem.

If price is the only issue, get the Co-op (and Migros) apps and you can shop daily--just check the app to make sure there is a convenient grocery where you are going, it will show you on an active map how to get there, and even show you their hours and what 'sort' of items a particular store carries. By that last bit I mean that Co-ops/Migros come in many sizes and shapes from large and small grocery stores to gas stations and while most close around 6/7:00 there are a few that are open later, like 10:00, and that can be handy to know. Also, though limited, the Co-op/Migros gas stations usually have a basic selection of pretty decent food and fresh fruit and bread.

Posted by
5837 posts

Someone even suggested we purchase groceries in Germany....

Just to save a few franc? Brings to mind folks who would bring a duffle bag of food purchased at a mainland Cosco to Hawaii when you could check a couple of bags free. With condo living and a bag of Cosco groceries they didn't have to eat local. Then Cosco opened shop in Hawaii so that tourist wouldn't need to travel with duffle bags of food.

Posted by
768 posts

I agree with the above writer that the prices are pretty good at the small stores, and selection might be the thing to think about (though I was always ok with what the small stores offered). If you want to stock up, I would do so at Interlaken Ost which has a very large Coop store, which is right across the street (south) from the train station.

Posted by
7209 posts

Coop price will make you breathe a sigh of relief after seeing the sticker shock of Swiss Restaurants. We love the Coops in Murren and Wengen. The one in Lauterbrunnen is tee-nincy!

Posted by
271 posts

Also look for 'Pam's' grocery stores. I think they are always on the small side but sometimes are there when the others are lacking. I know I have seen them in Nendaz, Zermattt, Saas Fee and other places. Similar prices and selection although both Co-op and Migros have more store-brand options.

I have brought food over from Germany before and it was significantly cheaper. BUT it was because we were in Fuessen, staying across the border in Austria (like 8 km from the castle in Fuessen) and then heading back to Switzerland. AND we were in a car, I would never take that much if I were on a train in Switzerland. Purchase at location and then thank god that grocery store prices in Switzerland are as cheap as they are!

Tim is right on, restaurants are expensive. One Roesti, sans eggs or other accouterments, runs about 16-18 CHF. If you are not familiar, in the South, Roesti is similar to, although not entirely or exactly like, hashbrowns and an order of Roesti is about the size of a double (or possibly a triple) from Waffle House.

It is all a location, location, location moment.

Posted by
2023 posts

We are soon going for a third stay in Wengen. On most day trips out for hikes we bought sandwiches at Coop and the price was very reasonable--and the sandwiches were good. We also bought fruit and yogurt and bottles of water. The lunch cost for the two of us was around $10. This was a good plan since breakfast (included) was huge and our hotel has excellent dinners as the hotel owner is a chef. Enjoy your trip!