Shopping for food or household goods in Busan can sometimes be a little inconvenient if you’re looking for specialty items. While almost all have the basic food and household staples, it sometimes takes running around the city to get everything you’re looking for if you are trying to prepare a special meal.
While there are also plenty of options to order food online, here’s a look at the major brick-and-mortar supermarkets around the city and a guide to getting you where you hopefully need to be.
Large Size Supermarkets
Though just sold by Tesco to MBK, it still holds probably the best selection of foreign goods to choose from. Over 400 stores and 500 franchised stores nationwide, it remains a great place to pick up fresh produce, quality meat and whatever household essentials you need.
Korea’s number one discount store, E-Mart caters to a more Korean clientele but still packs a wide-range of foreign goods. With its largest store located at the entrance of Haeundae New Town, the eight story outlet carries 70,000 products with everything from appliances and household goods to fresh and processed food items.
E-Mart Haeundae New Town / Photo: E-Mart
Another of the Korean-style discount supermarkets, Megamart has a large presence in the grocery store market in Busan. While it carries a medium-sized collection of foreign goods, it also houses fresh baked goods and a decent-sized fresh meat department.
The American discount warehouse giant is probably still considered the best place to get your selection of lunch meats and cheese, but be prepared to buy in bulk. A membership is necessary but easy to get, and the popular food court and sample tables are sometimes wilder than a moshpit.
Similar to Costco, Traders is an off-shoot of Shinsegae’s E-mart. Located in Seomyeon, it also carries a wide variety of products also in large bulk sizes. Though a more Korean-style store catering to Korean tastes, it also has the regular fare that you would expect at a large, bulk store.
A high-end supermarket opened by Shinsegae, its main flagship store is located in the basement of Centum City’s Shinsegae Department Store. With some hard to find European products and possibly the best place to buy fresh herbs outside of Saha-gu, the prices are a bit steep but carries a decent selection of items.
Lotte Department Store
Lotte Department Store’s Seomyeon and Nampo-dong branches carry a decent-sized basement supermarket with the standard options that most stores have. Don’t expect to discover something you haven’t seen elsewhere and be prepared to pay department store prices.
Check out HAPS Guide to the Asian Food Marts
Medium Size Supermarkets
For its size, Top Mart’s around the city carry the daily essentials at reasonable prices, but don’t expect to find a wide variety of foreign products on the shelves.
Lotte Mart’s can vary in size from smaller stores to larger, but most also just contain the day-to-day essentials that you can buy anywhere around the city.
Located in the Kyungsung University district, the small, but handy shop carries a good selection of frozen meat goods and vegetables at prices cheaper than most supermarkets. Also carries a few products in bulk, but don’t expect to get all of your daily needs here.
Have your say! Let us know of any other places to go in the comments below.
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