I have a crush on a supermarket. NZ was shockingly expensive when I arrived so a lot of the food I ate there came from supermarkets. There were a few to choose from but my favorite was New World.
New World gets the backpackers needs. Not only do they provide free wifi (I spent an hour in the entrance of the Kaikoura New World so I didn’t have to buy wifi) but they have the best prepared food section I’ve seen. The sandwiches became a staple of any long trip, whether a ferry or bus ride, the salads were good, and the pizza was cheap ($3, although disappointing, sorry NW you messed this one up a bit).
The best way to shop at New World as a solo backpacker was going straight to the prepared food section and finding the “Reduced to Sell” items. Usually some kind of salad – couscous, veggies and rice, garden salad – these items were made out of fresh produce so they had to sell quickly or they would go bad. Anything that didn’t sell fast enough was marked down, usually at least half price, so it would not go to waste. Since I was not stocking a kitchen but looking for an immediate meal these were perfect for me. I had a delicious couscous and broccoli with bacon lunch for just $2.50, a Thai curry soup dinner for $3, or a side salad for my pizza for just $1.
I wish New World existed everywhere. It was a real budget helper, and the food at least felt much healthier than most other budget food options.