More recent expense...
 
Notifications
Clear all

More recent expense pricing than the 'moving stories', please?

 
RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

I've been reading the various 'moving stories' that are posted here--- and while the message boards are great for discussion-- I'm having to hop about to find answers to a few basics.....what are current (April 2014) prices for staple/regular things? Most of the posts on the 'moving stories' are at least 4-5 years old if not older...... we are considering STX...but I hear STT has bigger stores, more options...so a variety of responses might be good.

What is the cost of:
- a gallon of cow's milk?
- a quart of soy milk?
- Flour, sugar...and in what size package?
- A dozen eggs? Organic?
- 4 pack of toilet paper?
- Simple cleaning supplies like Windex, Comet, Lysol spray?
- Pantry staples like olive oil, vinegar, cocoa, crisco/lard?
- 1 lb of cheese, what variety, packaged or deli?
- six pack of soda, brand and are there specials?
- Produce: bananas, apples, oranges, pears, grapes?
- On produce--- better at grocery/market or from farmer/road side stand/farmers market?
- Canned goods: chicken noodle soup, canned corn, beans, evaporated milk, condensed milk?

- a gallon of unleaded? premium? diesel?
- a quart of oil, what grade/brand?
- typical oil change for a car, truck, SUV and where?

Perhaps some sample run-downs of your next grocery-run would be helpful-- not only to newbies and those moving there, but to those who might comparison shop and give suggestions or ideas to current islanders..... it's tough to gauge what vehicle to bring if you're getting quoted 2005 gas prices..... and having some concept of what some staples cost today might be more helpful than 'higher than the mainland' as it may not be when you consider (in my case) that everything up in a high-altitude mountain town surrounded by passes costs 2x what it does in less remote areas.

BTW--- a note to other female message participants Taj did read the $$$ costs for feminine hygiene products....and if the warehouse stores on island don't offer bulk packs...she's happy to send some down for flat cost here and USPS flat-rate shipping as she says that's just one of those things that's highway robbery to jack up the price. Oy! (the lawyer in her won't try to change the island--- but she did get a little verbose with the injustice of that overblown cost item!)

Quote
Topic starter Posted : April 7, 2014 3:47 am
JulieKay
(@JulieKay)
Trusted Member

Feminine products can be bought at Kmart for not much more than stateside prices.

You might want to specify you're moving to STX. 😉

We moved to FL in Nov but I'm quite the competitive shopper and can answer in the morning what I remember from a couple months ago. Hopefully you'll get more responses.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 3:53 am
RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

Feminine products can be bought at Kmart for not much more than stateside prices.

You might want to specify you're moving to STX. 😉

We moved to FL in Nov but I'm quite the competitive shopper and can answer in the morning what I remember from a couple months ago. Hopefully you'll get more responses.

Thank you! 🙂

ReplyQuote
Topic starter Posted : April 7, 2014 3:59 am
picaflores
(@picaflores)
Advanced Member

You'll find a lot of info in this thread:

https://www.vimovingcenter.com/talk/read.php?4,212227,212454#msg-212454

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 9:16 am
Phizz
(@Phizz)
Advanced Member

I've been ordering a variety of food and other products from STX Direct. Krista brings in stuff from a variety of wholesalers in the States plus shipping and small mark up. The prices she give are the landed prices. She needs more volume to be able to bring in refrigerated items, so I hope a lot of people get on board. I've been very happy with her service and prices. She has an office/warehouse in the old Bingo Bldg and she has also has a FaceBook page STX Direct, and can be reached at stxdirect@gmail.com

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 10:36 am
BeachcomberStt
(@BeachcomberStt)
Trusted Member

Grocery prices from Pueblo In-Store Ad. Prices valid Wednesday April 2nd through Tuesday April 8th 2014.

-Niagara Water 24pk 3/$10.99
-Jack Frost Sugar 4lb bags 2/$3.99
-Dankin Milk 1 gal $4.99
-Chicken Leg Quarters 10 lb bag $7.98
-King Fish Steak $3.99/lb
-Salted Ling Fish $3.89/lb

-Goya Tomato Sauce 8oz 5/$1.99
-Chef Boyardee (Spaghetti & Meatballs, Beef Ravioli, Lasagna) 14.75oz 4/$5

-Large Red Globe Grapes $2.89/lb
-Gala Apples 3lbs $3.59
-Celery (sleeved) $1.19
-Yellow Corn 3pm $1.99
-Florida Oranges 4lbs $3.89
-Ex. LG. Green peppers $2.99/lb
-Sweet potatoes $.59/lb

-Beef cube steak $4.59/lb
-Ground Beef (Fresh 75% lean family pack) $2.99/lb
-Assorted Pork chops $2.69/lb
-Beef Bottom Round Steak (family pack) $4.39/lb

-Dole Tropical Blended Juices Assorted Varieties 59oz $2.99
-Minute Maid Orange juice w/ calcium or country style 59oz $3.99
-Yoplait Thick & Creamy Yogurt (vanilla, or strawberry banana) 6oz 5/ $4
-Imperial Regular Margarine 45oz 2/$7
-Essential Everyday Cheddar Cheese, Chunk Medium, Mild or Sharp 16oz $3.99

-Essential Everyday Peas & Carrots, Mixed Vegetables, or Whole Kernel Corn 16oz $1.39
-Aunt Jemima Blueberry, Home Style, or Buttermilk waffles 13.3oz $2.19
-Hot Pocket Pepperoni Pizza or Meatballs & Mozzarella 9oz $2.99
-Banquet Chicken Sliders Twin Pack 13.4oz $6.99

-Bumble Bee Pink Salmon 14.75oz $3.49
-Hunts Ketchup 35oz $1.99
-Kraft Barbecue Sauce Assorted Varieties 17.5-18oz 3/$3.99
-Essential Everyday Mayonnaise $2.99
-Coloso Iodized Salt 26oz $.89
-Essential Everyday Fruit Bowls (Mandarin, Pineapple, Tropical) 16oz $1.79
-Frito Lay Chips Variety Pack 50 ct $11.49
-Nabisco Ritz Crackers 13.75oz $3.99
-Planters Deluxe Whole Cashews 8.5oz, Mixed Nuts 8.75oz, Honey Roasted or Almond Pecans 8.25oz $4.99
-Malt O Meal Assorted Cereal Bags 24.4oz-30oz $4.99
-Milky Evaporated Milk 12oz $.99
-Coloso Reduced Fat Milk 32oz $.99
-V8 Splash Blended Juices Assorted Varieties 64oz $2.99
-Goya Nectar Assorted Varieties (Excluding passion fruit, guanabanana, papaya) 42oz 2/$4
-Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Dinner 7.25oz. $.89

-Dawn Dish Detergent 25oz $1.99
-Pinesol Original Cleaner 40oz $4.99
-Viva Paper Towels 6 rolls $6.49
-Bounty Basic Paper Towels 12 rolls $8.99
-Charmin Basic Bath Tissue 12 double rolls $5.99
-Royal Soft Bath Tissue 6 pack 2/$5.99
-Amor Detergent 11 lb $8.99
-Clorox Bleach 128oz 2/$5
-Raid Flying Insect Killer 15oz $3.99
-TAT Power Jet Roach & Ant Spray Killer 12 oz 2/$6
-Purina Alpo Prime Cuts Savory Beef Dog Food 16lb $14.99
-Arm & Hammer Powder Fresh, Unscented, or Sport Invisible Deodorant 2.6oz $1.89

-Barton Gin or Vodka 1 Ltr $2.99
-Heineken 24pk $27.99
-Bud Light or Budweiser 12oz $11.99
-Dewar's White Label Blended Scotch Whiskey 1lt $14.99
-Cavit Moscato 1.5Lt $12.99
-Bacardi Rum Gold or White 1.14Lt $9.99
-Absolut Vodka Assorted Varieties 1lt $13.99
-Andre Champagne $4.99
-Cruzan Rum Assorted Flavors 1Lt $7.49

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 11:15 am
OldTart
(@the-oldtart)
Expert

I follow stateside prices in different areas frequently and the rule of thumb of groceries costing an average of 30% higher than stateside has remained pretty constant over the years.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 11:18 am
BeachcomberStt
(@BeachcomberStt)
Trusted Member

http://www.plazaextra.com/

Plaza Extra grocery store with weekly sales ad.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 11:20 am
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Expert

you can order your toiletries at drugstore.com. usually cheaper and free shipping but plan ahead could take up to 2-3 weeks for deliver.

i have ordered otc drugs, feminine products. shampoo, body wash soyjoy bars.......

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 12:50 pm
JulieKay
(@JulieKay)
Trusted Member

- a gallon of cow's milk?
We don't drink or use it; sorry. And the only milk available right now is the UHT pasteurized stuff which is terrible in cooking. I saw a press release that the island dairy might open again sometime in the future though.

- a quart of soy milk?
We don't drink or use it

- Flour, sugar...and in what size package?
We don't use these items

- A dozen eggs? Organic?
Buy local at a farm stand and you will pay around $5/dozen - worth it!

- 4 pack of toilet paper?
I bought 16 packs at Kmart for around $9

- Simple cleaning supplies like Windex, Comet, Lysol spray?
I bought at Kmart; comparable to stateside

- Pantry staples like olive oil, vinegar, cocoa, crisco/lard?
All depends what you want. You can buy gallons of olive oil at CostuULess for around $12 if I remember right - but often those brands are blended with other oils (even if not labeled). A good bottle at Food Town will run you $20 - $30. Vinegar - Food Town has the best selection but still way less than what you find Stateside - about $1 - 2 more per bottle. Quality Foods has a small selection of high quality vinegars but you will pay more for them as specialty items. Cocoa, crisco/lard I recommend checking out CostULess or STX Direct.

- 1 lb of cheese, what variety, packaged or deli?
CostULess is the best place to go - can't remember exact prices but large selection of packaged sliced deli cheeses at reasonable prices, as well as some specialty cheeses. Quality Foods also has a small assortment of GOOD cheese if you want something for a tasting or cheese plate.

- six pack of soda, brand and are there specials?
We don't drink soda

- Produce: bananas, apples, oranges, pears, grapes?
Bananas are local, everywhere, and you can grow your own (recommend) - if you buy them they are cheap. Apples, oranges, pears, grapes all come from the stateside, quality can be sporadic as well as prices. Local fruits are incredible, plentiful, and probably you will try some that you've never had before. Once you've gone through mango season on STX you won't be interested much in stateside fruits.

- On produce--- better at grocery/market or from farmer/road side stand/farmers market?
I always say farmer/roadside stand/farmers market. There are a LOT of good farms on STX. It takes a bit longer to shop but worth it to shop, buy, and eat local produce. Quality Foods VI also has a good selection of organic produce from the States and some local produce. Food Town has a large produce section - freshness, price, quality depends upon the day you go and when the boat last arrived.

- Canned goods: chicken noodle soup, canned corn, beans, evaporated milk, condensed milk?
CostULess has most of these things - I bought organic and I think a 8 pack of organic canned corn was around $12...could remember wrong. But CostULess is where I would go for these things.

Feminine hygiene products and contact lens solution I bought at Kmart - pretty comparable to Stateside; maybe a dollar or two more

Also for any packaged foods/cleaning supplies/paper goods please check out STX Direct as Phizzz said - it is a new service my friend poodle (name on the board) set up and people are saying great things about it...like a stateside "buying club" but she places individual orders.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 1:46 pm
BeachcomberStt
(@BeachcomberStt)
Trusted Member

Also read this thread for information.

https://www.vimovingcenter.com/talk/read.php?4,221712

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 2:02 pm
mtdoramike
(@mtdoramike)
Trusted Member

Please don't move to St. Thomas only due to convenience of shopping. If so, you will probably regret it. Move to St. Thomas if you are looking for more of an active lifestyle or people or the beauty of the area and beaches. But the same can be said for St. Croix, it's just not as crowded, more of a rural feeling and probably a bit more of a laid back atmosphere of that is possible:)

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 2:36 pm
JulieKay
(@JulieKay)
Trusted Member

The main grocery stores on STX are the same size as the States - Plaza Extra, Pueblo, and CostULess. Actually Plaza Extra is larger than my local Publix grocery stores here in FL! You will not lack for stateside brands selection on STX.

STX has more farms due to more flat, arable land. STT also has farms but fewer of them. STX has a fabulous local honey and honeybee industry.

CostULess is a pretty good substitute for Sams Club or Costco - they even have some of the Costco brand at times. Not the same "Costco Experience" but for buying in bulk and finding organics it's worth it.

Quality Food VI has a wonderful specialty selection, frozen finer foods, local produce, organic items, and gourmet market. I would hold them up to some of the STT gourmet stores. You can also place custom orders with them. http://www.qualityfoodvi.com

Food Town and Food Fair were my everyday shopping places - smaller and closer to my house, good prices, Food Town just had a whole store renovation that gives it that small "specialty grocery" stateside feel. They have my favorite deli to buy sliced meats and cheese and other deli items.

The one thing I consistently ordered from the states was Penzey's spices - but then I'm a spice snob (such a difference!). We grow our own herbs for seasonings.

STX Direct for buying in bulk from Stateside.

But also...please don't forget your local shops on STX! There are several wonderful bakeries (Thomas is one), farmers markets, the fish market, Annally Farm for meats, local farms for meats/eggs/produce... you won't lack for great food. Leave your expectations in the States and try everything you find, and you will have a wonderful experience.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 2:57 pm
Native Son
(@Native_Son)
Advanced Member

I love this quote from JulieKay:

"Once you've gone through mango season on STX you won't be interested much in stateside fruits." 🙂

Also soursop, guava, passion fruit, sugar apple, coconut, avocado...the list goes on...

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 3:15 pm
JulieKay
(@JulieKay)
Trusted Member

I love this quote from JulieKay:

"Once you've gone through mango season on STX you won't be interested much in stateside fruits." 🙂

Also soursop, guava, passion fruit, sugar apple, coconut, avocado...the list goes on...

OH yeah! And fresh coconut water!!! ++++1 😀

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 3:18 pm
RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

Wow! Awoke this morning to this smorgasboard of info...Taj did sit up late reading other earlier threads on similar topics.. including gardening and the 'group' buying option of STXDirect. All great information!

We are both chefs, trained somewhat differently, but Taj a "spice snob" as she has 3-4 drawers of spices in her kitchen, and we both like to experiment, try new things, etc. Randy is lactose intolerant, but we asked on milk as it is sometimes a barometer of dairy in general- and we may go with some of the different milks like Almond and lactose free options if they exist. Randy joked we should just get a goat and avoid the milk issue altogether. We're glad to hear on farmers/markets as we do eat a ton of fruit and produce, very little packaged or processed foods wherever possible.

Thank you all so much for both your input from current sources, and your recommendations to earlier threads and preferred shopping for particular products. This helps with some idea of expectations, budgeting...and what we will buy large amounts of stateside and bring down- then make arrangements with friends on the mainland and have shipped down as needed.

Can you tell we're a couple of planners? Taj is worse though!

ReplyQuote
Topic starter Posted : April 7, 2014 3:32 pm
OldTart
(@the-oldtart)
Expert

... and what we will buy large amounts of stateside and bring down- then make arrangements with friends on the mainland and have shipped down as needed.

Don't go nuts on that! Seriously, you don't need a whole stock of "whatever" or stateside contacts to mail you stuff. I don't think I'm at all unusual in initially missing certain foodstuffs and having cravings for things I couldn't find here. But that's going back 30 years when the only options we had on STT were Grand Union and Pueblo. CostULess and KMart and Plaza Extra came much later.

The ONLY food item which I've had shipped to me from either my UK family or stateside friends is suet and that was just recently when I had a hankering to make a real steak and onion pudding and maybe even some Spotted Dick to offer some customers who I now cater to weekly from home since I closed my restaurant a couple of years ago. All I could find online was "vegetarian" suet which sort of defeats the whole purpose ... cooks will understand! I was recently at Pueblo on STT and that store has changed enormously over the years - but I didn't see basic chunks of lard there for sale which they always used to have.

Old-timers can ramble on incessantly about how it used to be, which of course is terribly boring to current newbies, and why most don't even go there. You slowly learn to adapt and become part of a multi-racial community which embraces you for what you are and isn't based on the color of your skin or your religious beliefs. That does take a while.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 5:08 pm
RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

... and what we will buy large amounts of stateside and bring down- then make arrangements with friends on the mainland and have shipped down as needed.

Don't go nuts on that! Seriously, you don't need a whole stock of "whatever" or stateside contacts to mail you stuff. I don't think I'm at all unusual in initially missing certain foodstuffs and having cravings for things I couldn't find here. But that's going back 30 years when the only options we had on STT were Grand Union and Pueblo. CostULess and KMart and Plaza Extra came much later.

The ONLY food item which I've had shipped to me from either my UK family or stateside friends is suet and that was just recently when I had a hankering to make a real steak and onion pudding and maybe even some Spotted Dick to offer some customers who I now cater to weekly from home since I closed my restaurant a couple of years ago. All I could find online was "vegetarian" suet which sort of defeats the whole purpose ... cooks will understand! I was recently at Pueblo on STT and that store has changed enormously over the years - but I didn't see basic chunks of lard there for sale which they always used to have.

Old-timers can ramble on incessantly about how it used to be, which of course is terribly boring to current newbies, and why most don't even go there. You slowly learn to adapt and become part of a multi-racial community which embraces you for what you are and isn't based on the color of your skin or your religious beliefs. That does take a while.

Taj cooks a ton of asian and Thai...there is an HMart in Denver she goes to once or twice a month and gets rice noodles, seasonings, spices, pastes for broths, seaweed sheets and 'stuff'....teas and then she dashes across the street to the Indian/Arabic market and comes home with jars of fig preserves and rose jam.... these are things she will probably buy a few months' supply of and ship down--- and then ask her friends in Denver who live nearby to pick her up some when we run low. Taj also has 2 girls in college, so sending a periodic 'care package' is normal...we'll just adjust what is in there!

I don't think we're going to have trouble adjusting to the diversity and being embraced.... we're just looking to get out of the snow and cold, putting our energies and skills into someplace that doesn't freeze over for 6-8 months at a time!

ReplyQuote
Topic starter Posted : April 7, 2014 5:21 pm
JulieKay
(@JulieKay)
Trusted Member

It is harder to find those specific Asian ethnic speciality items in the USVI. I can relate! However on STX make sure you check out the gourmet speciality Caribbean grocery on Centerline close to Fsted... they have some incredible ingredients Taj probably hasn't tried yet. 🙂

There is a shockingly huge selection of Indian ingredients and spices at Plaza Extra, primarily due to the influence of those flavors in the Caribbean and local communities. I know there is rose water and jam - fig jam in Bon Maman brands as well. I wouldn't bring a bunch of that stuff until you check out what is available.

Items I would buy in the States were specialty sauces, seaweeds, miso, vegetarian/vegan items, speciality rices and beans, barbecue (I'm from Texas - freeze and carry!), dried sausages and salamis, spices, and various gourmet items I couldn't find in the VI, such as powdered vanilla and pistachio butter.

But shopping on STX is always fun and interesting. Sometimes you are shocked at what you find, and surprised at what you don't. I suggest in general you bring what you need for a couple months at first and then after shopping around reevaluate. It sounds like you will go back and forth several times a year.

Oh and as you may have read on here - when you ARE shopping on STX and you find something you know you want and you haven't seen it before - buy a LOT, if it will keep. Because they may never have it again. Like about a year ago, CostULess had a whole case of nitrite-free Canadian bacon. I bought 8 packages for the freezer. I never saw them carry it again.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 6:05 pm
Alana33
(@Alana33)
Expert

Gourmet Gallery in Havesight and Crown Bay/STT carry many/most of items mentioned above as does Food Center but then you're thinking of living in STX and no idea what you can get there. Quite often stores on all 3 islands use the same suppliers to bring into
VI so things are available if you know where to look.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 6:13 pm
RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

We're in Crested Butte...which apparently shares a lot with STX except for being landlocked, 8000' feet up, and buried in snow. Getting things here is tricky sometimes, if you see something once...grab it...never see it again..... and going to Denver for a big grocery run of odd items is a 3 hour one-way drive.....so none of the STX type situations sounds all that odd- just a change of geography and GPS coordinates.

It will be good to get back into Caribbean cooking for both of us- and discovering new stuff. We are just prepared for bringing, as was said, 2-3 months worth of what we're used to in order to have time to accclimate, find either replacement or alternatives, or prep a standing order to the mainland. We have girls in school here--- so one of our sources will be to care-package up goodies to them, and include a check or funds to go to the stores in the metro areas where they are (Kansas City and Denver) and have them send it down. It's nice incentive to keep tuition and spending money flowing by supplying mom with her cravings and cooking quirks!

Such a good thing to have the thread and discussion- Taj is pulling out her bread maker and other kitchen appliances to see what might be easier to take to have fresh breads, etc. I truly hope we get jobs and whatnot set up soon--- we're both a bit sick of the snow!

ReplyQuote
Topic starter Posted : April 7, 2014 7:15 pm
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Expert

i lived in the keys and had to drive 2 1/2-3 hours each way to miami. it really is different knowing you can not just drive a few hours to get something.

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 7, 2014 7:18 pm
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Trusted Member

I love this quote from JulieKay:

"Once you've gone through mango season on STX you won't be interested much in stateside fruits." 🙂

Also soursop, guava, passion fruit, sugar apple, coconut, avocado...the list goes on...

OH yeah! And fresh coconut water!!! ++++1 😀

YUP!! I get a coconut just about every day! I calculated that Ive spent over $1,100 in fresh and delicious coconuts since moving here LOL!! The coconut guy by Coki - is my absolute favorite. Best coconuts on da rock.... and yep Ive tried them all! Addicted to coconut, and SO good for preventing leg cramps after snorkeling 6 hours a day like I do!

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 8, 2014 12:26 am
RandyNTaj
(@RandyNTaj)
Advanced Member

I love this quote from JulieKay:

"Once you've gone through mango season on STX you won't be interested much in stateside fruits." 🙂

Also soursop, guava, passion fruit, sugar apple, coconut, avocado...the list goes on...

OH yeah! And fresh coconut water!!! ++++1 😀

YUP!! I get a coconut just about every day! I calculated that Ive spent over $1,100 in fresh and delicious coconuts since moving here LOL!! The coconut guy by Coki - is my absolute favorite. Best coconuts on da rock.... and yep Ive tried them all! Addicted to coconut, and SO good for preventing leg cramps after snorkeling 6 hours a day like I do!

Oh, we have no doubt! Sounds fantastic!

ReplyQuote
Topic starter Posted : April 8, 2014 12:58 am
speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
Expert

1/2 gallon of milk is anywhere from 3+-6+ the cheaper milk does not last as long. crowley lasts a long time. i never liked island dairy milk and was not sad to see it go.
sometimes we have bought bread and it is moldy. we keep it in the fridge and it last longer. if we leave it on the counter it is moldy in 3 -4 days
eggs 3+ we buy an 18 pk
12 pk of soda 5 -there are no deals where you buy 2 get 2 free. EVER

heck i cant remember any more prices.

you can get some good deals at cost u less. if you can buy in bulk and have a place to store it, even better.

try not to get too hooked on the idea of air conditioners in the hot part of summer. your electric cost would be a tad high. i get rashes now and never had them before i moved here.

things rust easily too, certain colors of cloth fade, things smell musty if you dont air it out often ( just a few extra fyi's)

ReplyQuote
Posted : April 8, 2014 11:19 am
Close Menu