The Top Cheap Eats in Apia & Upolu 🍕 [2023]
The Top Cheap Eats in Apia & Upolu 🍕 [2023]

The Top Cheap Eats in Apia & Upolu 🍕 [2024]

© SamoaPocketGuide.com

Where to Get Cheap Food in Apia (and Across Upolu)

Don’t worry, Apia isn’t about going from hotel to hotel blowing all your hard-earned cash on an overpriced burger (although, there’s plenty of that too). If you go where the locals eat, then you have some irresistible food deals at your fingertips. From casual cafes to street eats at the markets, you’ll find some amazing cheap eats in Apia, and we’re not just talking about fried chicken! We list some of the highlights, right here.

As for the rest of Upolu, restaurants are only available at the island’s resorts and beach fales which, unfortunately, don’t make the cut on this list of cheap eats. That’s why all of the cafes, restaurants and takeaways here can only be found in Apia.

Before we begin, see how these cheap eats compare to the rest of Apia’s dining delights in The Food Guide to Apia: Places to Eat & Food Tours or find out what else there is to do other than eat in the 25 Best Things to Do in Apia.

5 Tips to Save Money on Food in Apia

Sticking to the cheap eats of Apia, here are some extra tips to help you save the cents on scram…

  1. Check menu prices before you arrive at your chosen restaurant by downloading the Seki Eats app (Samoan Uber Eats)
  2. Choose self-catering accommodation to make your own meals
  3. Alternatively (or additionally), choose a budget Apia accommodation with breakfast included, typically more than the average person can eat, so all you may need is a snack for lunch instead of paying for a full lunch meal
  4. If you can’t live without snacks, cheese, a bottle of wine, etc. then bring these from home if you have space – food is a little more expensive than in New Zealand, Australia and especially the US. Check out our advice in Taking Food to Samoa: What You Need to Know
  5. Eat out at the cheap cafes, restaurants, markets and takeaways we list in this guide to the top cheap eats of Apia and Upolu!

Check out the rest of our tips in the 10 Ways to Save Money on Food in Samoa.

The Top Cheap Eats in Apia & Upolu 🍕 [2023]© SamoaPocketGuide.com

Cheap Eats in Apia – $10 and Under

The great thing about Apia is that you’re never too far from an affordable dining experience. Here are some of the cheapest restaurants, cafes and takeaways in Samoa’s capital.

Markets

A congregation of cheap eats await at Apia’s monthly Night Market (Samoa Tourism Information Centre, Beach Road), happening on the last Friday of the month from around 4 pm. Aside from cotton candy, popcorn, cupcakes and cookies for a couple of bucks, feast on nachos, hot dogs, kebabs, palusami, fai’ai elegi and oka typically for around ST$5-$6 each.

Otherwise, Fugalei Market (Fugalei Street) is your all-day everyday market except, ya know, Sundays. Although hard to find between the mounds of fresh fruit and vegetables, you’ll find stalls selling hot local meals like palusami and fai’ai elegi (see 20 Foods to Try in Samoa) for less than ST$10. Additionally, there’s a food court section to the market selling deep-fried and barbecue chicken meals for ST$5-$10.

Deep-Fried Takeaway Food

If you’re willing to put that diet on hold, then you’ll find no lack of cheap deep-fried takeaway options across Apia. Kardenia’z (Faipule Road, Fa’atoia), Mr.Chicken (Convent Street, SNPF Plaza), Chick-a-licious (Cnr Vaitele and Lalovaea Street) and Mr Chippy (Lotopa Road) are just a few takeaways offering deep-fried delights, kebabs and burgers between ST$5 and $20. Raynims Fast Food (Lepea) is famous across Apia for its ST$5 fish/chicken/sausage and chips!

Something Sweet

And for a cheap and cheerful treat or dessert, try one of Apia’s ice cream parlours like Chillz (Faatoia Road, Leone) whipping up real fruit ST$6 cones and ST$8 smoothies – approximate prices, of course. They also do very reasonably priced hot meals like chicken wings and spaghetti for around ST$12-$15 and combos like two waffles or a waffle and a thick shake for ST$20.

The Top Cheap Eats in Apia & Upolu 🍕 [2023]© SamoaPocketGuide.com

Cheap Eats in Apia – $11-$20

For those with a little more budget to spare, ST$10-$20 opens up plenty of options between Chinese takeaways, gourmet burgers and more.

Cheap Asian Food in Apia

With many Samoans also of Chinese descent, not to mention the abundance of fresh seafood making Japanese-style meals like sashimi and sushi all too easy, you’ll find plenty of value when it comes to Asian cuisine.

Ok, so Bella’s Kitchen (Beach Road) does a bit of everything for very reasonable prices, but some of the best options are the “small” noodle boxes and Chinese-style soups for ST$12-$15. They also do very reasonable and tasty Mexican staples like quesadillas and chilli cheese fries for a similar price.

For all your bubble tea needs, LJ Cafe (Lotopa) offers the best value with drinks for ST$12-$15. Otherwise, Chada Cafe‘s (Vaitele Street, Vailoa) bubble teas are a little pricier but they also do Thai food like ST$15-$20 som tum Thai and peek kai tod.

Craving Chinese? Fried rice and fried/soup noodles at Yummy Fast Food are also very reasonable at ST$11-$16 each. If Indian is more your style, there are plenty of vege and meat curries on the menu of Tifaimoana Indian Restaurant (Fugalei Street) for around ST$16-$18 with adding rice for just ST$4. Otherwise, Cafe 1962 (Salenesa Road) does a butter chicken curry with rice for approximately ST$20, as well as six sushi rolls for around ST$10.

Cheap Burgers in Apia

Burgers aren’t exactly hard to find in Apia, but some of the best-priced can be found at Kilo’s Shack (Saleufi Street), selling cheeseburgers and fries for only ST$10! You can double up or get some more insane creations, like the chilli burger or “Big Boss Burger” for ST$15-$18.50. Skippys Restaurant (Mulinuu Road) is also very cheap with burger meals for ST$10-$16.

For something more gourmet but still well-priced, we like Jojo’s Diner (Mapuifagalele Road, Vailele) for ST$12-$24 – cheaper prices burger only; higher with fries. Kofe Hous (Vaitele) also does decent burger meals for ST$18-$22.

Fast-food Chains in Apia

Samoa’s homegrown fast-food chains are also present in Apia, such as DMC and Hungry Franks of the Frankie Supermarket chain. DMC can be found in SNPF Plaza, Vailoa, Motootua and Fugalei and boasts meals like burger-fries and-drink combos and fish/chicken-chips-and-drink combos to range from ST$17-$25 each, while large sharable meals and buckets of chicken are in the realm of ST$38-$56.

Hungry Franks has branches in Lotopa, Vaitele and Fugalei where you can get a burger, fries and a drink for ST$14-$17.50.

Although Apia has a McDonald’s (Cnr of Togafu’afu’a Road and Vaea Street), note that it definitely one of the more expensive fast-food options in Apia.

The Top Cheap Eats in Apia & Upolu 🍕 [2023]© SamoaPocketGuide.com

Free Food in Apia?!

That’s right, we’re letting the cat out of the bag; there is a place you can go to get free food in Apia but that’s only part of the experience…

The Samoa Tourism Authority hosts the Samoa Cultural Village at the back of the Samoa Tourism Information Centre (Beach Road) from Tuesday to Friday, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm. Amazingly, this experience is free.

You’ll be formally welcomed with an ‘ava ceremony before seeing how a traditional umu feast is prepared. While your lunch is cooking, you’ll move between various fale to see how ‘ava bowls are carved and even witness a traditional pain-staking Samoan tatau (tattoo) being performed. Finally, sit down with your freshly prepared umu lunch while watching a fiafia cultural performance including fire dancing.

For more freebies across the city, check out the 15 Free & Cheap Things to Do in Apia.

More About Food, Saving Money and Restaurants in Apia

That’s it for our complete guide to cheap eats in Apia. If your mouth is watering for more, check out these other handy guides:

And don’t forget to bookmark The Complete Travel Guide to Apia on a Budget and The Food Guide to Samoa: Places to Eat & Food Tours – they’re pretty useful too.

Author

Laura S.

This article was reviewed and published by Laura, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Samoa Pocket Guide. Since arriving solo in the South Pacific over 10 years ago with nothing but a backpack and a background in journalism, her mission has been to show the world how easy (and awesome) it is to explore a paradise such as Samoa. She knows the islands inside out and loves sharing tips on how best to experience Upolu and Savai’i’s must-dos and hidden gems. Laura is also the editor of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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