Less Is More

One thing you’ll notice pretty quickly in your shopping experience here in Costa Rica compared to the United States is packaging. Back in the US, it is all about appearance and appeal. Walking up and down the aisle of a grocery store, you’ll see many bottles, jars, cans, boxes, and bags. Not so here.

Most things, things I never would have imagined, are packaged in bags. The labels aren’t facing out. They’re stacked in bins. I’ve seen many a bag over these past few weeks.

sale flyer from Hipermas, "Wal-Mart" of Costa Rica

A few of the things that I have purchased that sit in my pantry or refrigerator at the time of this post include: tomato sauce, mayonnaise, mustard, a variety of salad dressings, salt, laundry detergent, antibacterial hand soap, and numerous seasonings/spices.

Some of the things I’ve seen but not purchased yet in bag form are: bleach, toilet bowl cleaner, fabric softener, margarine, butter, a variety of drinks/juices.

You can still buy things in bottles, jars, cans, and boxes, but they are way more expensive. The key is to buy the inital item in the more permanent container, and then use the bag to refill. Items in bags are a third or more of the cost.

Yesterday morning, on the way to church, I saw a man walking home from the store with a bag in his hand. What was he carrying? In his bag was a bag of milk.
Posted in shopping

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