Living cost in Norway is one of the highest in the world, which can be a big challenge for students, particularly international students. However, there are still a few hidden gems in Tromsø that offer food and other necessities at a student-friendly price. Whether you are new in Tromsø or have been staying for years, but still unaware, these places deserve a visit or two.
Text by Yati Chen
Eide Handel Café
Eide Handel is actually a supermarket known for selling fresh local food such as fish and meat, but it also has a small restaurant where you can choose your food and pay by weight or order from the menu list. The prices at the restaurant are very reasonable, considering the delectable freshly made warm food. Situated right next to the last stop of bus number 42, which is Eidkjosen on Kvaløya, it takes approximately 25 minutes to reach the place from the city center. Regardless of the distance, it is a restaurant well worth a visit.
Coop Obs! Café
Yes, this is the Coop supermarket in Jekta shopping center. But where is the café? And yes, it’s quite hidden above the supermarket. How to get there? It’s hard to explain, but once you find a stairway that leads up to a mezzanine level in the middle of the supermarket, that’s it! The stairway is located near the kitchen utensils section and it’s covered with shelves, which makes it difficult to spot. The café serves a wide selection of meals, deserts, and free refill coffee, with affordable prices.
Sometimes it is wiser to buy second-hand items, because first, it is cheaper, and second, it is environmentally friendly. NLM Gjenbruk offers second-hand clothing, furniture, books, kitchen utensils, sports equipment, shoes, and much more. Just visit them at Søndre Tollbodgate 3A, a red wooden building, which is located in the oldest part of the city center. Check their website for the opening hours! www.nlm.no.
This second-hand store is a little bit tricky to find, as it is situated on the northern tip of Tromsø, with hardly any bus access. The closest bus stop is Ringheim, and only bus number 32 stops there, a few times per day. If you plan to visit this store, check their website for the opening hours and the bus schedule carefully. Nevertheless, this second-hand store has the biggest selection of furniture and other home necessities. www.remiks.no
Located on Tromsdalen, this second-hand store is actually a huge tent containing mostly sports equipment and furniture. It has a large collection of skis, snowboards, skates, roller skates, and even bicycles. The place is quite accessible since bus number 20, 22, and 24 stop there. The name of the bus stop is Kraftforsyninga, but you still have to cross the road in order to reach the huge tent. Just like the previous stores, you need to check the website for opening hours and days, since second-hand stores have rather short opening hours. www.tromsprodukt.no.
Popular and easy to find, Fretex is just in the city center, a few steps from Nerstranda shopping center. This second-hand store has the best display and selection of clothing and footwear, mainly for ladies. It also has a collection of books, kitchen utensils, and occasionally sports equipment. www.fretex.no