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Auchan or Carrefour?

11294 Views 20 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  CurlyBoy
I believe the 2 main supermarkets in France are Auchan and Carrefour.

Which do you prefer, or are they very similar and do they sell a wide range of things (kinda like Tesco)?

(First thing hubby needs to buy over there is a pair of trunks - I understand they are needed if you wish to swim in France - why don't they allow swimming shorts?)

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Try Decathlon for anything and everything sporting.

If you have a satnav you can get the coordinates of all their stores from

Free downloads of these, and lots of others.

To answer your question, there's not a lot to choose between them.


To indicate how good Decathlon stores are, we have even seen a brass diver's helmet, suit and air pump on sale in one of the really large stores.

Thought I was still hallucinating from last night's Chateau Maison Tres Ordinaire - but no, it was real enough.
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I prefer Auchan though they both sell similar products. Auchan have just launched a "Value Range" haven't tried it yet...

The French require that swimming trunks (Speedos are the only style acceptable) can ONLY be used to swim in and the items used in the swimming pool should not be worn elsewhere which is why shorts are banned. The reason is they believe very few men would walk around outside of the swimming pool building in Speedos 8O - French thinking for you!!

Oh, the French use about 99% of all the lycra produced. Some sights are worthwhile, others, well, just hope you haven't just eaten :D
Either is fine! We have used them both. I feel each chain has their strong and not-so-strong points. Yes, swimming shorts are definitely taboo in many public pools in France. Don't forget that the markets and the smaller shops in France are fabulous places to shop too.

Be warned that the French supermarkets are keen to charge for their bags, so take your own with you.
As Dave said, not alot to choose between them. Personally, we prefer Auchan.

Don't forget L'Eclerc, Intermarche etc though.....

My preferences would be:

1 - L'Eclerc
2 - Carrefour
3 - Auchan

But for "proper" coffee, nothing beats Auchan own brand Arabica - but that's just my opinion. :)
Decathlon is quite expensive. Ther is another chain shich is cheaper but the name eludes me at the moment (too much vin ordinaire :oops: )
Hi Hez! How are you?

Swimming TRUNKS... I think it's about hygiene. If SHORTS were allowed as swimwear, it would be easy for a gent to go swimming in the SAME shorts as he was wearing on arrival at the pool. And he could wear them afterwards too. I think the French like to see that we are in CLEAN swimwear. Can anyone offer another explanation?

Supermarches... Leclercs, Intermarche, Lidl, Carrefour, Aldi, Champion, SPAR!! Our personal preference would be Leclerc's, Intermarche, Champion and Carrefour. Wonderful places, BIG, we feel very comfortable in them. As Dave Boing said, there's not a lot between them. Sometimes, you have NO choice.

Interestingly, the only time we've met height barriers was at two different Carrefours. But we drove in through the fuel station!! :roll: :wink:

Anything else we can help with? Look at my ticker! :lol:
Thanks everyone. Yes I now understand why the french have the no shorts rule. Kinda makes good sense for hygene reasons!

UncleNorm - yip, getting excited, not long now...but so much to do beforehand - although I'm sure its just because its our first time 'overseas' with the van. (and fourth time away in total!).
I remember many years ago , a scorching hot day ,imagine four heavy weight man ,refused entry into the pool,off we went down to super u ,the only trucks they had where leopard skin, all the same colour,none of us wanted to really wear them ( not cool ) .marched back to the pool with our towels in front of us.Got into the pool and our women ran off with our towels .
Not a pretty sight. :oops: :oops: :oops:

Some Places very very few, will allow you in the pools without Speedos (but you must be wearing some kind of Shorts)!.

As for Supermarkets, Auchan and Geant seem best but do shop around. If you like cheap wine, I doubt you will beat ED, Quality and variety may be an issue though never had a bad bottle.

Give ED a go for Wine if you see one and like Wine of course.

Teemyob - I love red wine! Still trying to convert my hubby though, coax him away from the drambuie and onto the wine. Maybe I'll have a better chance when in France!
Don't forget that Auchan also offer a Loyalty discount card giving 5% off own products redeemable in cash at the next visit.

remember, even on holiday every little helps.

Auchan, Carrefour or what?

Leader Price and Aldi are also excellent for wine - the fact that all their products are their own brand makes them quick to get round, too..

But do check out "bio" ( i.e. organic) shops, their wine boxes are not expensive, and you won't poison yourself with additives - oof! I've started something now . . .

Thanks for the 'Bio' tip Helen. I didn't know that meant organic in French!
Organic wine always seems that bit more healthy for you!
We use Ecomarche' / Super U and Netto all have their loss leaders but the locals tend to shop at Ecomarche' as they are a bit cheaper, less choice though. ( Uzerche)

Limoges Pool you need trunks but at Brive you also have to have a cap. I got the red card as I had Bemuda style, so had to spend anhour or two in the local Trocs.

Is the other group you were trying to remember
Champion hypermarkets?

little jack

I have SatNav POI`s for all of the Supermarkets n stuff mentioned within this thread (auchen, geant, champion, carreforre, ed, etc).

I didn't know what they where until reading here. Hopefully they will come in handy on our travels.

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