One of the first things we heard about living in KL, and quickly confirmed, is that food here can be REALLY, REALLY cheap… or it can be REALLY, REALLY expensive. Eat local, and you will be amazed at how much tasty, fresh food you can get for a few bucks. You soon realize you are better off eating out just about every night because (a) you don’t have to cook, (b) it’s fresh and delicious, (c) there are so many choices, (d) no dishes to do and (e) it’s actually cheaper in many cases!
However, if you must have the familiarity of things from home, as a Westerner you will pay for it. Things like Ocean Spray, Smuckers, Dr. Pepper, Cheezits, US cereals, and other name brands are going to be 3, 5, sometimes 10x the cost of the local equivalent. The same can be true when you dine out.
For example, every Thursday we eat dinner at the plaza across the street where there is an open air market. We can get fresh produce and full meals that are offered by local restaurants and stores that put up a tent and table for the evening. It’s always packed and we look forward to it every week. The two of us can eat dinner and have leftovers for lunch the next day for somewhere between 20-30RM (which is about $6-9). At the other extreme, if we opt for western food like we did one of the first Friday’s we were here (and if we add an adult beverage or two), the price could be in the range of 150RM (or just under $50).
Well, to trump that we heard that the Expat grocery store had pumpkins that we just had to go see. This is amazing because of course no pumpkins grow here so these were imported. A friend told Jenny that one was over $250 and we just had to go see it. We were expecting to see a giant pumpkin that rivaled her fitness ball in size, but were shocked to find what a $250 pumpkin actually looks like here in KL:
That’s Jenny pointing to the ticket, which if you zoom in you’ll see it’s just under 800RM which is around $250-260. So, no jack-o-lantern carving this year! That’s okay it’s messy anyway, right?
Happy (early) Halloween and safe trick-or-treating! By the way, what’s your costume this year?