You've got to hand it to Sainsbury's - they know how to do location. Right bang smack in the centre of Fallowfield, they were never going to be short of custom. Fallowfield is Studentville, students always need shopping... we know the drill. You live in a shared house and toothpaste and loo roll are the first things to go. Technically they shouldn't be shopping at Sainsbury's. It's a step down from Marks and a step up from Tesco. Students can't afford that, surely?
Well to be fair, this Sainsbury's really does seem to cater to its student market, with special offers aplenty on the likes of wine, ice cream, and a hearty near sell-by reduced section. Plus... it's massive! I thought the one in Regent Retail Park was a fair size but this one takes the biscuit.
And while I won't see the Coronation Street celebrities I saw in the Castlefield/Salford branch, I'll get that warm and fuzzy suburban feeling seeing the nice bloke who was asking me about the virtues of Macs over PCs when I was doing some work in Solomon Grundy or the couple I saw sharing breakfast in Trof the other day. But that aforementioned wine and ice cream... be quick, shoppers. These students are major moneysaving stockpilers and if there's an offer on, they're likely to have snatched everything up before you do. It's probably a good thing I've given up the Haagen Dazs because I'd have never managed to get any of the decent flavours on the two for one!
The staff are always helpful when I get disorientated too, and there's plenty of variety on offer due to the store's ample size. I'm a happy bunny having such convenience round the corner.
Good things about this Sainsbury's:
1) My parents bought me beer from here on my first day at uni, making it easy for me to make friends.
2) There is a good selection of food, which you won't find anywhere else in Fallowfield or Withington.
3) I heard a scallie bragging that he had been caught shoplifting here (good security).
4) You can pretend you're on the Gladiator travellator when entering and exiting the store on the moving walkway.
Bad things about this Sainsbury's:
1) It is always full of students. Avoid it during the weekend before freshers' week unless you want to be fighting for your beans and booze.
2) For a self-proclaimed 'superstore' there isn't as big a range (particularly of specialist foreign food products) as other large stores such as the Asdas in Hulme and Sport City.
3) It's not 24 hour like the large Asdas and Tesco in Burnage.
4) It's a bit pricey.
Sainsburys was never my store. Im more of the Asda girl when it comes to big supermarket shopping and then secondly the Tescos girl when it came to quick pick-ups.
Still, whenever Ive been it this Sainsburys Ive never disliked it. So yes, Im neutral about this. Its huge and has everything from homeware to kitchen things, food, cheap alcohol, stationary. You get the picture. But Asda would have everything this has with a bigger variety to choose from and a smaller price to pay! So naturally, Ive been loyal to it.
Fallowfield students love it, reasons being that there is no Asda close by and Tesco which is right there, does not have everything Sainsburys does. So who wins? You decide.
Placed in the middle of the student area that is Fallowfield, this place was always going to do well as there's not much other choice.
I have heard that it's the highest priced Sains in the North.. that might not be true but it is quite expensive to say it's mostly student shopping here. However, it has everything you could need. And it's open pretty late so perfect for getting cash out on your way for drinks (instead of queuing at the Tesco machines).
The magazines are always well stocked, instant fake tan is sold here and the delicatessen counters are too good to resist. More needed?
However, they never open enough tills to cater for the amount of people in there - the best time to go in is about 12 when it's not busy. At the end of the day it's a supermarket so there's not a huge amount to say to differentiate it.. the pink lemonade has GOT to be bought and Nectar cards are good so you can then buy a bulk shop at some point in the year.
If you like being pushed and shoved by students, it's the place to be.
Ahhh, big Saino. I love big Saino. For four years, big Saino fed me and provided me with toilet roll and washing up liquid. I never had a problem with big Saino, we were bessie buds.
If you are a student in Fallowfield or Withington, and you don't have a car to take you to big Asda, or the patience to drag your shopping home from Lidl, the big Saino's your bessie bud too. The great thing about this branch is that it stocks a really great range of their Basics stuff. I would hazard a hazardous guess, and say that I think they stock pretty much the entire Basics line. Which is great news for those who might be following the Becca Financial Plan. That is to say; in third year my loan didn't come through 'til January, and I had to make do with a flyering job, so for three months I lived on a weekly diet of; a packet of Basics salami, a loaf of Basics bread,a block of Basics cheddar and a tube of tomato puree. Luckily, Big-Chinned Housemate had a Breville. Big Saino kept me alive for three months, for less than a fiver a week. Saino Basics are the absolute shizzle, and most of them are as good as named brands.
The clothes and music/DVD section here is, in my opinion, ridiculous. It's pointless. Nobody shopping in big Saino wants a beige sarong or a cable knit cardi in lime green. And all students either download all their media (fair means or foul...) or buy it muuuch cheaper online, or at Fopp. So this section is taking up valuable space that I think could be better employed as a bigger bakery section.
Because the bakery section is ace. Say it with me, people, TIGER BREAD! I have never met anyone who doesn't like tiger bread. And they also have these mad cakes that are blank, but if you buy it and bring a photo, you can get it printed, like on the telly! Or, you buy it and take it home and put it in your printer. Or something. Look, I'm not sure on the details here but, y'know, facecake!
As well as pointless clothing and lovely Basics and super tiger bread, big Saino has a pharmacy, a fish counter, a cheese counter, a meat counter and a bit where they sell ready made fresh curries and samosas and cooked chicken. The cheese counter is great, and the staff on it are usually pretty helpful, though I always seem to get stuck with one whose shift is about to finish, when I swoop in and order twelvety thousand small bits of cheese. The queen green olives sold on the delicatessen counter are LUSH, big as apples and really fleshy.
Yes, the queues are ridiculous during term time. Just make sure you plan your trip for any time between say 11am and 3pm. This is when students are in lectures, or asleep, or both.
Top tip: show up about 25 minutes before closing time and head for the reduced sections in the dairy fridge and the meat fridge. You could grab a steak for less than half price, as I did many a time.
Now I am (almost) a proper person, I do my shopping online and get it brought to my door (with about a million substitutions, THANKS) but I will always remember how much fun big Saino used to be, and how it kept me alive that cold cold winter...
Sainsbury is a very good supermarket in fallowfield. This is the only biggest supermarket at the moment in this area. There is a small tesco just opposite the sainsbury. Though sainsbury is a bit expensive than the other supermarkets like tesco and asda. They are running promotions for half price at the moment which makes it good for shopping during this credit crunch effecting the whole of our country. Gifts, homewares and clothes are especially expensive here. Whereas food and fresh groceries are quite reasonable.
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