A small Romanian shop is trying to lure shoppers across the border in a social media group of residents living in Makó, 10 km from the Romanian-Hungarian border. Besides their low prices, the post also emphasises to potential customers that the staff even speaks Hungarian.
The post was written by the manager of Profi Loco, a supermarket in the village of Cenad (in Hungarian: Nagycsanád). The editorial staff of szegeder.hu decided to travel to the small village and find out if it was true what Zsolt Uglesin, the shop manager, had written.
At the shop, the portal’s journalist bumped into the shop manager who wrote the post. The journalist took the opportunity to ask him about the customers coming from Hungary. According to Uglesin, the number of Hungarian customers varies. Sometimes he does not see Hungarian customers all day, while other times, Hungarians come into the shop every half an hour or so. The purpose of the Hungarian shoppers also varies. Some just stop by for a few things, while others do their major weekly shopping here.
Although the report notes that some products are indeed cheaper here than in Hungarian shops, it is also possible to find some that are more expensive in Profi Loco. For example, one kg of chicken breast can be bought for the equivalent of HUF 2250 (EUR 5.94). However, this is of course to be expected, as there has been a price freeze on chicken breast in Hungary since last year, reducing the price to HUF 1500 (EUR 3.96). In addition, rice and Pur dishwashing liquid are also worth buying in Hungary, according to the portal. One kg of rice costs HUF 140 (EUR 0.37) more in the Romanian shop, and the dishwashing liquid is HUF 600 (EUR 1.58) more expensive.
However, the 70-gram Piros Arany, which is considered a Hungaricum, costs only HUF 220 (EUR 0.58) in Romania. In Hungary, it costs around HUF 340 (EUR 0.89) in the cheapest places. Hungarian consumers can save HUF 500 (EUR 1.32) on lettuce, and HUF 100 (EUR 0.26) on Tuborg beer and 0.33 litre Pepsi Cola. Potatoes cost HUF 150 (EUR 0.39) less per kilo at Profi Loco. Finally, 1 kg of cornmeal costs 245 HUF (EUR 1.64), which is twice as much in Hungary.
Although it seems that some products are worth buying in Romania, fuel consumption of the car must also be taken into consideration. Szegeder.hu calculates the cost of a trip from Szeged to Cenad to be HUF 3600-3700 (EUR 9.47-9.74). The drive from Makó is only HUF 1600, and it takes less than an hour to get there and back.
According to the portal, however, it could still be worth driving from Szeged to Romania. However, it will take much longer to get there. Nevertheless, from villages particularly close to the border, this option is a useful alternative. Crossing the border is easy, the drive is not long, and some products are much cheaper than in Hungary.