New Zealand's proudly 100% Kiwi owned supermarket, weekly institution for many locals, and unintentional leader in eco-shopping. Having a Pak'nSave is the minimum requirement to be granted the official status of "town" in New Zealand.
Pak'nSave offers a no frills, back-to-basics, budget supermarket shopping experience. You can find most standard products available but at slightly lower prices. The "budget" brand and ethos is prevalent in everything they do, from marketing to product display.
One way they cut costs is by displaying most product in the box it comes shipped with. You'll find aisles full of brown boxes with their fronts cut out. This hardcore desire for low prices has arguably made Pak'nSave the global pioneers in eco friendly shopping. They even foreshadowed the no-plastic bag fashion. Plastic bags were only available for purchase and instead, they promoted the use of discarded shipping boxes to carry your goods home with. It used to be a common sight to see the front entry-way of stores stacked high with empty boxes for your hoarding pleasure. Lately, this sight seems to happen less and we'd love to know why.
Sights and Sounds
Regularly, you'll find popular products with ultra low prices. Sometimes, these prices are even lower than what distributors charge. It is this during confluence you'll notice another common sight at Pak'nSave - The Dairy Hustle. It's fairly common to see entrepreneurs loading trolleys full of 2 litre Coke and Sprite bottles. The sale items come with a purchase limit which is easily circumvented by multiple trips thru the aisles and strategic leverage of friends and family.
The parking lot at Pak'nSave is a place of wonder. It's the one place they don't cheap out. They gracefully provide ample space between parking spaces for customers to easily access their vehicles - something nearly every other supermarket fails to provide. However, navigating the parking lot during shopping rush hour is an experience in itself. Traffic jams, vented frustrations, and a total disregard of road rules are all part of the glorious experience you'll find at rush hour Pak'nSave.
To truly experience being a local in New Zealand, we recommend you visit Pak'nSave on Sundays around 3pm.
Check out their store finder to find one for your journey.
Seriously, it's a great place to buy cheap food. And if you're one of the 95% of tourists that tour our country in a camper van, this is the place you want to go.