You’re having a great time on holiday, but you’ve realised that you need to buy a few things. Which shops have the items you need?
If you’re staying at an AirBnb with access to the kitchen, you’ll probably want to buy some food so you can cook some meals. This is a great idea to help you save some money while you’re on holiday.
If you’re staying at a hotel, you won’t need to cook…but you may need to pick up some essentials like toothpaste or even some snacks.
There are so many different shops selling lots of things you might need. You just need to know which shops are selling what you’re looking for!
If you’re looking for everyday food and essentials, it’s likely you’ll be able to find what you need at a corner shop or convenience store. These are small shops that you can find in lots of different locations. They are very common because they are designed to be convenient for people who need a few basic items.
A local shop is bigger than a corner shop/convenience store. Usually there are one or two of these shops in one neighbourhood. They may take a little longer to travel to, but they have a wider variety of items to buy.
A supermarket is the biggest type of shop. They have the largest variety of items and you’re certain to find everything you need. People travel bigger distances to get to the supermarket (unless they live very nearby!) so usually they bring their car. Supermarkets have large car parks.
If you’re looking for something more specific, there are lots of specialist shops that have what you need:
Butcher – meat
Greengrocer – fruit and vegetables
Baker – bread, pastries and pies
Fishmonger – fish
Delicatessen (deli) – luxury food. These days delis often sell sandwiches.
Pharmacy/chemist – medicine and toiletries
Can you think of any more?
If you’re really lucky, you may find a farmer’s market! Here, you can find fresh fruit, vegetables, meat, cheese and fish sold by the farmers themselves. They are wonderful places to wander around and it’s a great opportunity to chat to locals. You may even find some local dishes here.
If you’re at a local shop or corner shop, you just need to choose the items you want and pay for them. If you’re shopping at a market, specialist shop, or sometimes at a supermarket, you will need to know some specific vocabulary so that you can ask for what you want. Look at the dialogues below to see the vocabulary you need in different shops.
Dialogue 1 (deli):
A: Good afternoon. How can I help you?
B: I’d like to buy a wedge of cheddar cheese, please.
A: Of course. How much do you need?
B: About 300g would be perfect.
A: Can I get you anything else?
B: Yes, please. I’d like a tub of black olives and a slice of chocolate cake.
Dialogue 2 (fishmonger):
A: I’d like to buy two salmons, please.
B: No problem. Would you like them whole? Or would you like me to fillet them for you?
A: Could you fillet them? That would be wonderful.
B: Is there anything else I can help you with?
A: I’d like to buy one kilogram of mussels.
Dialogue 3 (pharmacy):
A: Excuse me? I have a headache. Could you tell me which medicine I should buy?
B: Of course. Take two of these tablets every six hours.
A: Thank you. I also need some toothpaste but I can’t seem to find it.
B: It’s over there, next to the deodorant.
Dialogue 4 (butcher):
A: Good morning. I’d like to buy half a dozen of your signature sausages, please.
B: Certainly. Is there anything else?
A: Yes, please. I’d like 10 rashers of back bacon.
B: Ah. Unfortunately, we’ve sold out of back bacon. We still have some streaky bacon if you’d like it?
A: That’s fine, thank you. May I also have two lamb chops, please?
B: Of course.
It’s very easy to buy fruit and vegetables at the supermarket, farmer’s market or greengrocer. Each type of fruit and vegetable is weighed and given a price, and then you pay the correct amount.