One of the hardest things to get used to when you arrive is how different the shops are. I always see people asking what’s the Australian equivalent of South African shops like Game, Dischem, and Edgars.
So I thought it would make a great blog topic! Here is a list of the Australian equivalent of South African shops.
Now bear in mind sometimes equivalent shops are subjective – there has been much debate about whether certain shops have an equivalent at all (I’d say Woolworths in South Africa has no real equivalent in Australia – the UK has Marks and Spencer but we have nothing).
So take this list as a good guide to get you started, rather than the gospel truth. Basically, don’t blame me if you get here and don’t agree!
The Australian Equivalent Of South African Shops
Mr Price Home – Kmart/Target/IKEA (kind of – IKEA is massive and amazing!)
Pick ‘n Pay – Woolworths
Checkers – Coles
Spar – IGA
Game – Big W
Dischem –Chemist Warehouse
Clicks – Priceline
Makro – Costco
Ackermans & Pep – Best & Less
Builders Warehouse – Bunnings
Exclusive Books – Dymocks
Hi Fi Corporation – JB Hi Fi
Edgars – Myer
Stuttafords – David Jones
Midas – Supercheap Auto
Hirsh’s – The Good Guys
Coricraft – Freedom Furniture
Mugg & Bean – Dome (the cakes aren’t half as big or good though!)
Sportsman’s Warehouse/Mr Price Sport – Rebel
Mica Hardware – Mitre 10
The Crazy Store – Red Dot/Reject Shop
Telkom Shop – Telstra Store
Cape Union Mart – Kathmandu
Musica – no real equivalent here but you can get music and movies at JB Hi Fi, plus most supermarkets (although everything these days is focused on streaming)
Cardies – no real equivalent, but lots of newsagents like News Express carries a wide range of cards and gifts
Ster Kinekor/Nu Metro Cinemas – Event Cinemas/Hoyts Cinemas/Grand Cinemas (WA)
CUM Books – Koorong
Marcel’s Froen Yogurt – Fro Yo
Jockey – Bonds
Some South African Shops Just Don’t Have An Australian Equivalent
Woolies – nothing!
Milky Lane – nothing!
Ocean Basket – nothing!
Wimpy – Nothing!
We also have some of the same shops, including:
Starbucks (east coast only)
Gloria Jeans Coffee
The Body Shop
It might be frustrating to shop in Australia for the first few months after you land, but you’ll soon find brands and shops you like and get used to.
What other Australian equivalents of South African shops can you add to this list?
Let me know in the comments!
Want to find out more about what life in Australia is really like? Read all about 12 challenges you’ll face when you move to Australia now.
Doug. Benckendorff25th February 2019 at 2:08 pm
I would say that Pick & Pay, Checkers are much the same as Woolworths and Coles. We do have Spar in Australia. Kmart, Target, Big W are all very much the same. IKEA, well that is a place of its own.
Dylan16th March 2019 at 12:22 pm
It depends a lot on the suburb, same as South Africa. David Jones food is very posh and pricy, woolworthes is generaly expensive but good quality. Coles is usually very simar to woolworthes, bit cheaper but still costly. Aldi is very well priced, but sometimes people avoid it for the snob factor. My wife just pointed out that South African woolworthes is best matched to private shops such as the boat shed in Perth.
I find best option for cost and quality is fruit/veg from spudshed/goldwn grocer or similar, bulk shop from Aldi and then odd bits from the others.
Reeva Cutting22nd March 2019 at 2:35 pm
Yes the Boat Shed is amazing – probably even posher than Woolies food!
Jim25th June 2022 at 7:16 am
Nice list, although I’m on the east coast, not Perth, so no Spur for us.
I found this article when feeling “lus” for Ocean Basket after watching a cooking show. There are no mid-priced chain seafood restaurants: it’s either fish and chip shops, sushi, or expensive seafood restaurants.
The Coffee Club reminds me of Mugg & Bean.
The South African Woolworths company owns David Jones, but I very rarely shop at David Jones or Myer: they “feel” overpriced…no idea if they actually are.
There isn’t an exact equivalent of Fruit and Veg City or it’s fancier incarnation, Food Lover’s Market either, but I suppose Woolworths (AU) and Coles come close, but with smaller fruit and veg selections, and often less gourmet options as well.