Shops are generally open between 9:00 and 20:00 Monday to Saturday; large supermarkets and shopping centres will open even longer. Smaller shops or businesses on the outskirts of towns and cities, however, close between 18:00 and 19:00 during the week, and on Saturday possibly even at midday. All shops are normally closed on Sundays. Exceptions are bakers and florists which often open on Sunday mornings. You can buy food, newspapers and smaller household items at night and at the weekend at large rail stations or airports, kiosks and filling stations, but this is usually a bit more expensive.

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Many towns have markets one or two days a week which are nor- mally held in the centre or in particular areas of the town and offer fruit and vegetables direct from the producer. You can also find food from spe- cific countries in speciality shops such as Asia Shops or Italian food shops.

Since sorting waste is a major issue in Germany (see section on waste disposal), a deposit is paid for many drinks bottles and cans. It is therefore advisable to keep bottles and cans and take them back the next time you go shopping. Many supermarkets have recently installed return machines; you place bottles and cans in these and when you press a button you are given a receipt showing the amount. Take this to the till and you will be paid the amount shown, or it may be deducted from your shopping bill.

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