Middle East spending habits to increase in Ramadan

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The Holy month of Ramadan is all about the spirit of being together, eating together, praying together and strengthening our bonds with our kith and kin. It is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, which marks the fasting of Muslims around the world from dusk to dawn.

Every year, this month in the UAE is considered as easy, simple and convenient as compared to other countries where Muslims are observing their fast at the same time, not just regarding work and school hours, but also the support and great initiative done by the UAE government for all the UAE Muslims.

According to the latest survey conducted by an Internet-based International market research firm YouGov, spending in this Holy month on everyday food items is expected to increase significantly in the Middle East. According to the survey, a total number of 1523 users were asked about their expected consumer behavior in Ramadan. Out of which 505 users were from the UAE, 507 from Saudi Arabia and 511 from Egypt.

According to the Istathmir, 53% of the shoppers expect their spending habits to increase in Ramadan. The rest were of the view that most of their expenditures would be done on regular household items such as food, drinks and other groceries.

Consumers in the UAE

The survey also initiated that 46% of the consumers in the UAE would be spending more in Ramadan, followed by 59% in Egypt and 56% in Saudi Arabia.

In all three surveyed countries, 68% of the respondents would be making use of their regular income to cover the additional expenses while 29% would be utilizing their savings to cover the costs.

Most of the consumers revealed that they would be buying food items and drinks on a regular basis instead of purchasing them in bulks at price-offs. Top products consumed mostly in this month are dates (73%), laban (62%), yogurt (61%) and fruit drinks (53%) collectively. Other items include sugar, rice, oil and milk.

Furthermore, the survey also disclosed that consumers during this Holy month, will showcase less brand loyalty regarding food and drink choices as 40% of the consumers claimed they would be going for brands that advertise best offers and promotions. However, the rest 22% said that they would remain loyal to their existing purchasing brands

International and Global Consumer market research solutions Euromonitor expect retail sales to increase by 12% this month in the UAE as compared to the previous month.

Moreover, the survey also highlighted about the Middle Eastern residents’ intended travel plans during Ramadan and on Eid holidays. As of now, most of the residents living in the UAE claimed that they have no travel plans during this month, as they prefer to spend the Holy month in peace here. Nonetheless, 69% of the residents living in Egypt and 66% in Saudi Arabia prefer to travel to their home country until the month ends. Although, some claimed that they would be going abroad or to their countries of origin during Eid this year.
The research survey is expected to continue throughout the month of Ramadan and also during Eid to estimate other changing habits of consumers across different product groups.

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