Supermarkets in Elche are represented both nationally and internationally. There are the large national chains such as Mercadona, Supercor and Consum. Then you have the international influences like the popular German chains Lidl and Aldi, and equally as popular French chain Carrefour. Not so wide spread, but a blessing for British expats and holidaymakers is Iceland supermarket. Some of the Spanish supermarket chains like Corte Inglés can get confusing as they own further local chains such as Supercor. But as a whole, supermarkets in Elche are plentiful and stock a good selection of local products, as well as a smaller selection of international goods.
The Language Barrier In Supermarkets
For holidaymakers and expats that haven't learned much Spanish, shopping in supermarkets can be rather challenging. If you are German and visiting Lidl or Aldi, don't expect the staff to speak German. Aside from Iceland who do employ British staff, all the other supermarkets employ Spanish staff. On the rare occasion, these may take on foreign staff who are fluent in Spanish. However, you will find the majority of products on the shelves, although labelled in Spanish, are quite self explanatory. If you really find yourself stuck just ask a member of staff and if they can't help they will try to find someone who can. Smiling and being polite usually works a treat 🙂
The majority of the supermarket chains in Elche stock a good range of products. They are usually wheelchair friendly with spacious isles. Most have excellent fresh produce departments. These include fruit & veg, bakery items, delicatessen, butchery and fishmonger departments. The staff in these departments are very helpful and will endeavour to find just what the customer wants. international brands are well represented, but for certain items, their own brand is nearly just as good, and often half the price. If you are used to British tea though, avoid the totally undrinkable Spanish brands. Beer, wine and spirits, if sticking to the local brands, are extremely cheap. If you are on holiday in Elche, be sure to take home some bargains such as extra virgin olive oil.
For British expats and holidaymakers looking for a taste of home, the choice can be limited. Try venturing a little further afield. The British supermarket chain Iceland will more than likely have just what you're after. The closest one to Elche is 30 minutes drive away in San Fulgencio. If you fancy a great day out, then a visit to Iceland before heading back to Elche, make the 40 minute drive to Torrevieja. Here you can enjoy superb activities and attractions for all the family. Iceland is conveniently located on Av. de las Cortes Valencianas, with easy access to the N-332 to Elche.