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Food Costs in Ecuador: Shop Smart and Save 50%

By in Ecuador, Lifestyle on September 4, 2013
Food costs in Ecuador

Avylze

You may have heard that Ecuador is one of the best places to retire on a budget. You may have heard that it offers reasonably-priced real estate and health care. But what about the things you pay for on a day-to-day basis?

Like food.

As it does in many Latin American countries, food costs in Ecuador can range from much less to, in some cases, slightly more than their U.S. equivalent. The main determining factors are your own individual tastes and preferences. However, on the whole, you can expect to pay about half of what you would in the U.S. for your typical trip to the grocery store.

Below is a sample list of what you might buy on a trip to the local supermarket. We’ve listed the price in Ecuador and, for comparison’s sake, the cost of the same item in the U.S. Prices can vary greatly, even from one region of the country to another, but these are some pretty good estimates based on what we’ve gathered from friends who live there.

Item Ecuador U.S. %Discount
1 dozen eggs $1.82 $3.18 42%
Filet mignons steaks, 1 lb $4.68 $19.99 77%
1 liter milk $1.00 $3.19 67%
Bananas, 12 $  .60 $2.36 75%
3 lb. bag laundry detergent $2.00 $5.45 63%
Soap (1 bar) $  .80 $1.22 34%
Yogurt $2.70 $3.98 32%
Avocados, 2 $  .50 $  .66 24%
Rice $  .82 $2.82 42%
Cheese, large round(16oz.) $2.00 $6.99 71%
3 heads organic lettuce $1.50 $5.07 70%
Dozen roses $1.00 $19.99 95%
Ground organic coffee (1 lb) $4.56 $9.32 51%
Fresh bread, 2 loaves $2.50 $4.18 41%
1 rotisserie chicken, whole $14.52 $7.39 -96%
Pork (1 lb) $2.84 $8.54 67%
3.5 lb chicken breasts, frozen $9.54 $9.79   3%
Corvina (sea bass), 1 lb $7.27 $13.32 45%
Cereal, boxed $6.00 $4.29 -40%
Total $66.50 $131.73 50%

As you can see, food costs in Ecuador can represent a considerable savings if you shop wisely. A lot of packaged items, like cereal, can actually cost more to buy in Ecuador.  However, if you’re willing to try a local brand, you can still save on those items as well.  This is true for a lot of different products.

Another factor to consider is the quality of the items. Some things, like coffee and produce, don’t seem to be that much less expensive than they are in the U.S. However, many of those items are fresh, organic, and locally grown. You can’t beat ‘em!

In looking at the total bill, it’s also easy to see that the quality of your meals is one thing that definitely doesn’t have to suffer if you choose to relocate to a low-cost destination like Ecuador. With some smart shopping, you can eat as well as or better than you ever have!

If you like the idea of making your retirement dollars stretch farther on all aspects of living, you might want to learn more about the opportunities available in Ecuador.

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