Richmond, Virginia – we have a New Kid on The Block and his name is Lidl. I have discussed grocery store comparisons in the past & you can find that post here. But, I wanted to dive into Lidl and how it compares to Aldi.
Lidl is part of the Schwarz Group, the fifth-largest retailer in the world with sales of $82.4 billion. They began in 1973 and expanded across Europe before announcing they will launch their United States headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. Currently, they operate over 10,000 stores in 27 countries (Lidl.com).
Similarities – Lidl and Aldi are both German based companies and have a zero waste and savings approach for their target consumer. Both stores of display products in their original delivery cartons, which isn’t as aesthetically pleasing to some but allows the staff to easily interchange products and refill. They agree on minimal staffing philosophies which increase wages for employees. They both carry home and clothing items as well in a rotating sale area.
Major differences- you don’t need to find a quarter to access your cart at Lidl and unless you bring your own bags you will get paper packed for you by a staff member. You will notice more brand names at Lidl that are common to Americans already. Lidl has more options on the shelf, but the store is double the size. Lidl has a massive wine selection and a store employee shared that you will be able to taste samples somewhat regularly, like you get at wholesale companies like BJ’s/Costco. Lidl has a bakery in the store which people seemed very interested in while we were checking it out.
What I am sure what you mostly want to know about is price comparison – in viewing both sale ad’s and visiting both stores in person this weekend I believe Aldi is cheaper overall. The items we buy weekly – eggs, milk, yogurt, meat, cheese, fruits, and veggies – were all cheaper at Aldi. I didn’t compare every single item in both stores, so don’t spear me if you saw one or two items for cheaper, I compared our frequent healthy purchases and the overall cost.
Call me old fashioned, but I like the small feel of Aldi. I enjoy being responsible for putting my cart back to retrieve my quarter. I like teaching my boys that you put things back where you find them and taking responsibility as a shopper for the cleanliness of the parking lot and cart area. I support the store charging for their paper bags to encourage shoppers to use their own reusable from home. The best part of Aldi is being able to get in and out of the store in 30 minutes with both kids and feed my family healthy options for less than 90 dollars a week. While the store is small and doesn’t have 500 options for crackers, I applaud the simplicity of a few choices.
Grocery shopping doesn’t need to be an all day affair or drain your bank account. Richmond has learned this lesson and regardless of whether your Team Aldi or Team Lidl or a combination of both, its awesome to have two great options that are so very affordable in our backyard. We are so glad to have these German based companies in our community.
I am excited to hear your thoughts our newest grocery store in Richmond and whether you will be back!