We all agree that  foodstuff in Johor Bahru is generally cheaper then Singapore. This is evident by the number of Singaporeans  swarming into Johor Bahru everyday, especially on Saturday and Sunday for the weekly/monthly grocery shopping. My Johorean friend said that It is easy to spot a Singaporean on a weekend, all you have to do is to look for people with shopping trolleys filled to the brim (sometimes two trolleys ) and the number of times the use the word 'cheap'.

photo : Causeway on Saturday. Singporeans  going in to eat and shop

Causeway on Saturday. Singporeans going in to fill their cars up with groceries.


I did a survey of 10 common food products found in Giant Hypermarket at Pelangi Leisure Mall and Giant Hypermarket at Sembawang Shopping Centre.  I narrowed down from a list of 30+ products to 10 as I excluded products on offer and products that were not identical (i.e. different packaging, flavor etc.). Bulky and heavy low price items were excluded so were items that need refrigeration, My guess is that most Singaporean wont buy such stuff.

I use the exchange rate (Sg$1 = Rm$ 3.09)


Milk Powder - Omega Plus 600g 

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 7.54  ( 47.3% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

Among all the 10 products,  this will save you the most money (both absolute and percentage terms).

Nescafe Instant Coffee - Blend and Brew - 25 Sticks

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 1.52 ( 24.7% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

A fellow Singaporean said that if you buy brands like OLD town instant coffee the price difference is even greater. Perhaps in future blog post I will do one on instant coffee.

Knife Brand Cooking Oil - 2 litres

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 2.94 ( 44.2% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

Apparently cooking oil is subsidize by the Malaysian Government, that is why it is a controlled good and we cannot bring back car loads back to Singapore.

Skippy - Peanut Butter Choc Stripes 

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 0.93 ( 18.6% Saving) in Johor Bahru.


Hero Raspberry Jam -340g

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 1.88 ( 31.6% Saving) in Johor Bahru

Better value for money then peanut butter, but it is in a glass container (fragile) and weighs more.

Lipton Tea Bags - Yellow Label - 50 bags

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 0.94 ( 25.4% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

Its light and small. I will buy the 100 bags box instead of 50.

Lay's Stax BBQ Potato Chips

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 1.00 ( 29.4% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

Alternative brands like Pringles have a narrower price difference.

Maggi Instant Noodled - Chicken

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 0.81 ( 36.8% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

Dont' buy imported Korean Instant Noodles from Johor Bahru. The prices are about the same as in Singapore.

Prego - Tomato Sauce -Traditional Flavor

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 0.24 (0.09% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

Most imported foodstuff are not worth to buy in Johor Bahru. The key is to know what is imported and what is not. I am still in the learning stage. 

Ayam Brand - Tuna Chunks in Water /Sunflower Oil

Price Difference: Less Sg$ 0.17 ( 6.9% Saving) in Johor Bahru.

The word 'Ayam" mean chicken in Malay. People assume that it is a product of Malaysia. Check the fine print on the label and you will see "Product of Thailand".

Just these 10 products alone will save me Sg$17.97. My weekly grocery shopping in Johor Bahru is around Rm $450 ( Sg $ 150). This is less that half of what I use to spent when I was living in Singapore.