16 April 2015

Prices in Mexico and Kyrgyzstan

In Bishkek I did a couple of posts in 2006 and 2011 about the prices of food and I'm finally getting around to doing it here.  I'll keep the prices in pesos and kilos because I did the same in Bishkek with som and kilos. I also did it in June of 2011 in Tokmok.

This was a lot harder to do this time because prices vary significantly more in Guadalajara than they do in Bishkek.  

Five som is worth about 12.5 cents. In Kyrgyzstan, five som buys a loaf of flatbread, about 9 inches around. It takes you one way on a minibus anywhere in Bishkek. It buys one head of garlic, or a small Kit Kat, a package of Ramen noodles, or a pound of potatoes or onions.

Five som is currently worth about 10.5 cents.  A small loaf of flatbread (smaller than the comparison in 2006) costs 10 som and a standard loaf is 20 som.  A marshrutka ride is 8 som, a head of garlic is 15 som, a small Kit Kat is 10 som, and a pound of potatoes or onions is at least 20 som.

Five pesos is worth about 33 cents right now.  It was worth about 40 cents when we got here.  That may sound like a small difference but it's made a noticeable difference for us, especially since prices haven't risen much here in general.  When we got here a peso was worth about 3.5 times as much as a som (in dollars); now it's four times because the som has dropped more than the peso.

For 5 pesos you can get a small stack of tortillas, a small head of garlic, or a bus ride (5.5 pesos, actually).  A small candy bar would be about 5 pesos.  A pound of potatoes or onions would be probably 8-9 pesos.

20 som buys a bag of milk, one banana, a pack of four rolls of toilet paper, or a kilo of cracked wheat.

A bag of milk is 35 som, a banana is still about 20 som, 4 rolls of nice toilet paper are about 40 som, and a kilo of cracked wheat is 40 som.

A bag of milk is 10.5 pesos, I have no idea how much one banana costs since they're grown here and there not sold one at a time like they can be in Bishkek, 4 rolls of toilet paper could cost 25 pesos, and a kilo of wheat is 7 pesos at Abastos.

30 or 40 som is for a kilo of apples, a bottle of dish soap, 5 liters of water, or a half liter of kefir. 

Apples range from 30-80 som with 50 being average, although they're still in season here.  A bottle of dish soap is probably 50-70 som, I have no idea how much the water is now.

Apples can be 10 pesos/kilo at Abastos for 20 kilos but are usually at least 25 pesos/kilo and can easily be 40-50 pesos.  Mangoes are 10-20 pesos in the tianguis right now.  A bottle of dish soap is around 50 pesos and 20 liters of water is 27 pesos delivered to your door.  Kefir is not done here, but I can get a half liter of jocoque for 20 pesos.


40 som is for a kilo of Batken rice, a jar of tomatoes, a kilo of white rice, or a liter of apple juice.

A kilo of Batken rice is 70-80 som, I think (I don't buy that now; Chinese Elita is 60-70 som and Pakistani rice is 60-70).  A jar of tomatoes is 80-90 som.
20 pounds of jasmine rice is 300 pesos at Costco, I don't buy tomatoes in jars here because they're always cheap, and a liter of fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice is 20 pesos.

50 som is for a short taxi ride around town.
You have to pay 50 som in Tokmok now.  Bishkek isn't less than 80 for a short ride. 

A short taxi ride is around 60-70 pesos.

 80 is for a kilo of tomatoes in the winter, a jar of jam, a bottle of shampoo, a package of the least expensive diapers, a longer taxi ride in Bishkek, or a bottle of honey. 

I can still get a kilo of tomatoes right now for 80 som, but I expect that will increase in the next few weeks.  A jar of jam is probably 150 som, but I make my own, so I'm not sure.  A bottle of jam is at least 150 som for the same price.  A longer taxi ride is 100 som.  No idea on the diapers, but there's no way they're 80 som.  A bottle of shampoo might be 120?

Tomatoes are usually less than 10 pesos/kilo and aren't even close to the Bishkek winter price when they're out of season.  A small jar of American-brand jam with reduced sugar is about 35 pesos.  A longer taxi ride is around 100 pesos.  A bottle of shampoo is probably 60-80 pesos and I can't think of the price of honey.

The price of cheese is usually around 100 pesos a kilo versus Bishkek's 400 som/kilo which means we eat way more cheese here than we did there.  Eggs in Tokmok were $1.20/dozen in the summer; here they're 42 pesos/kilo which makes them over $2/dozen.  Raspberries are 20 pesos/liter in the Wednesday tianguis, 35 in the Monday, and they cost as much at Costco as they do in the US. You can buy prickly pear, guava, mangoes, cucumber, watermelon, papaya, jicama, and more for 20 pesos/liter for cut-up fruit.

It's generally easier shopping in Mexico because there is a much greater variety of produce available, there's only a very short off-season for it and the prices don't increase as dramatically then as they do in Kyrgyzstan which means you can keep eating tomatoes in January in Guadalajarawhen you wouldn't touch them then in Bishkek.  But the in-season produce is really cheap in Bishkek and you can stock up when the raspberries and strawberries and tomatoes and cucumbers are in season.  Because you're really going to want them in the winter.

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