Toilet Paper Sold Out!

In Czechs, Life on April 2, 2008 by Petr Bokuvka

I went grocery shopping to a BILLA supermarket in the very downtown Brno, on the main square where all tourist groups from Asian countries gather to hear the main chapter from the history of Brno.

The drugstore aisle that usually offers five kinds of toilet paper was almost empty. On two top shelves there were fancy 4-packs of what looked like scented toilet paper that cost 42 CZK, which is now way over $3.

The remaining two shelves usually store single rolls for 3 CZK ($0.15). There were totally empty. At six p.m. and the store closes at nine p.m.

An ordinary Czech customer who comes to the store must have asked themselves two questions:

  • What does the fancy $3 paper wipe that the cheap one does not?
  • Is it a strategy of the store to stop refilling the shelves and aisles at certain point when certain items are sold out to make people buy the more expensive ones? Or, the ridiculously expensive ones. They know that once you make the purchase you are not going to try another store just to buy toilet paper.

In case you are not familiar with daily habits of Czechs, their daily grocery shopping takes place on the way home from work, usually halfway between one’s workplace and the nearest tram stop. Moreover, this kind of shopping is usually done by mothers who drag their kids home from kindergartens. And a tired mother will definitely NOT try another supermarket just to get cheaper toilet paper…

For the record 🙂 $3 toilet paper is not going to ruin me but I hate the idea that the store has some supplies but for some reason they would not refill the shelves….


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