From this short article you will learn about the shops of the Dominican Republic, about some of the features, and the operation hours. And also, perhaps, you will find useful tips for yourself. Here you will not read about specific shops in Punta Cana or Bavaro. There will b information about the stores of the Dominican Republic in general.

Table of contents:

магазины доминиканы
In the photo, Calmado is the smallest type of shops. They work late, accept dollars, very convenient.

Types of shops of the Dominican Republic

There are three types of stores in the Dominican Republic:

  • Hypermarkets – they are called Hipermercado. Mercado is translated from Spanish as a market. They are only found in major cities. There is in Santo Domingo, in Santiago, in Puerto Plata. But you will not find such stores, for example, on the Samana Peninsula, or in Bavaro.
  • Supermarkets – locals call them Supermercado. In general they do not differ much from hypermarkets. But the trading area will be smaller.
    • Such stores can already be found in any city with a population of 20,000 or more. Here you will also find everything you need. Large selection of vegetables, meat, alcohol and other small items.
  • Calmado. When you hear the word Calmado, know that these are very small shops run by locals. The area of such a store can sometimes be 8-10 sq.m., and sometimes 100-200. A distinctive feature of such shops is that they sell only essential goods and rum.
    • There are almost no refrigerators and perishable goods.
    • Little choice of vegetables and fruits.
    • You can buy here: water, pasta, canned food such as corn / peas / tuna and of course rum.
    • By the way, everything about the national drink of the Dominican Republic and a lot of tips in the article: Dominican rum.
    • Prices here are higher than in Mercado, the choice is small, but often there is simply no other stores around.
small shops in the dominican Republic
This is a bigger calmado. You see an assortment, in general, everything that can be stored without a refrigerator.

Good to know:

The most popular hypermercado and supermercado grocery chain in the country is OLE. Their stores are as similar as possible to the stores that we are used to.

Stores of the Dominican Republic: opening hours

First, read the article all about time in the Dominican Republic. There will be a lot of useful information that should help you in some places, and shops are one of them.

  • As a rule, all Hipermercado work from 8 am to 10 pm
  • All Supermercado from 9 am to 8 pm
  • Important: most of the stores in the Dominican Republic on Saturday and Sunday are open until 5 pm. Keep this information in mind. After 5 p.m., even an open Calmado will be hard to find.

It is important to know:

On weekdays, small Calmados are open until 1 am or even 2 am.
Calmado in las galeras shops in the dominican republic
This is what a standard small Calmado looks like. This particular one is in Las Galeras, in Samana.

Features of work due to Covid-19

If you are reading these lines, we have not yet defeated the coronavirus. I recommend reading a short article on the link: is the Dominican Republic open now. And also about Covid-19 in the Dominican Republic.

And below are briefly listed the features of the work of stores in the Dominican Republic during a pandemic. At the beginning of 2023, this information is no longer very relevant, but you can read how everything was a year ago.

  • Body temperature control at the entrance.
  • Mask required
  • Everyone is asked to use an antiseptic also available at the entrance.
    • If the temperature is measured for everyone, then everyone’s hands are treated with an antiseptic in some stores forcibly, and in some – at will
    • And most importantly, the country’s authorities have lifted the curfew since December 2021. On the rest of tourists, it did not affect much.
shops of the dominican republic fruits
Everyone is wearing masks if you pay attention. And also look at the prices of fruit: the price is per pound, not kilogram. But more on that below.

Shops in the Dominican Republic: interesting information

You will read about prices in stores in a large review article: prices in the Dominican Republic. There will be information about prices for all categories of goods, services, rental, housing and much more that may be of interest to tourists.

And below are some interesting facts that relate specifically to the shops of the Dominican Republic.

  • All prices for vegetables, fruits, meat are in pounds, not kilograms.
    • Be careful, because you can not calculate the budget and at the checkout you will be very surprised why it is so expensive.
    • 1 lb = 0,45 kg
stores of the dominican republic
Here’s a papaya for 12 pesos ($ is their peso, don’t worry) a pound. And for a kilogram it turns out already 26 pesos. And imagine you will buy an expensive piece of meat, and do not pay attention that the price is per pound. Here at the checkout you will be surprised at the final cost.
  • Volumes of liquids can be either in liters or in ounces and gallons. Read labels carefully.
    • It is interesting that rum is measured in liters or milliliters.
    • Coca-Cola in ounces
    • And, for example, wine and sangria in gallons.
  • In Hypermercado and Supermercado – you can always pay for purchases with a card
    • And in Calmado only in cash.
  • If you don’t already know, then in the Dominican Republic you can pay in American dollars almost everywhere. This also applies to shops.
    • In large hypermarkets, cashiers may not accept dollars. If you don’t have a peso, check this before shopping. But often accepted.
    • But in any Calmado, dollars will be accepted from you with great pleasure.
    • Remember that it is better to have a small cash with you. Since change is still given in pesos and not at the best rate.
features of Dominican shops
Here on the price tag it is clearly visible that 38 pesos per pound !!!

Good to know:

In large stores, the product range is large; here you can buy many souvenirs and gifts for relatives and colleagues. And what to bring from the Dominican Republic as a gift, read the link.

In conclusion: I hope after reading this article, you have got a general idea about the shops of the Dominican Republic. Always remember that prices are per pound, shops close at 5 pm on weekends, and you can pay in dollars at the cashier.

Enjoy your shopping in the shops of the Dominican Republic!

Resources to help you plan your dream trip to Dominican Republic

  • Flights at the best prices with discounts
  • Car rental: DiscoverCars – a largest international resource
  • Hotels and apartments:
    • Hotellook – compares hotel prices among dozens of booking platforms and offer you the best price.
    • Booking – large online booking platform.
    • Agoda – even more accommodation options in Dominican Republic.
  • Vacation packages:
    • Expedia – best deals from Europe.
    • CheapOair – cheap packages from all US cities.
  • Tours, excursions and extreme activities:
    • GetYourGuide – more than 800+ tours and water activities.
    • Viator – 3500+ tours and excursions in Dominican.
  • Comprehensive travel insurance: EKTA
  • Internet and Calls:
    • Airalo – eSIM with internet package.
    • Drimsim – universal SIM card (or eSIM) in any country in the world.
  • Taxi and airport transfers: Intui.Travel