UAE | Leisure

For expats, gifting season continues with DSF

Cool bargains help many residents stock up for families back home

  • By Janice Ponce de Leon, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 21:56 January 19, 2013
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: Arshad Ali/Gulf News
  • Russian artists perform at Al Seef streen during the Dubai Shopping Festival 2013.

Dubai: For many residents and tourists, Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) is a time to splurge, a time to tick off items from their wish list of gadgets or clothes. But there are others for whom DSF is also about being able to share with their loved ones.

Gulf News caught up with some expatriates on Saturday who were busy shopping not for themselves but for their families back home.

Indian expatriate Mohadeen Abdul Kadher, 49, told Gulf News yesterday that he had set aside some money this DSF to buy goods for his wife and two children. He held a rice cooker in his right hand and a cooking range lighter in his left.

When asked what he thought about the bargains, the light vehicle driver said with a smile: “You see, I’m not a lucky man but, because of DSF, because of the promotions, I can buy some goods to send home to my family.”

For Filipino expatriate Edgar Vitug, a maintenance technician in Jebel Ali, it’s easier to spend his hard-earned money during DSF knowing that it is not only he who is benefiting from the big discounts. “The discounts are a big help especially for us. Imagine buying a pair of jeans here for Dh15 versus your family buying that in the Philippines for around 500 pesos [Dh45],” Vitug, 51, said.

“As much as possible, we try to set aside at least Dh1,000 during big promotions like DSF. It’s been our practice to buy clothes, toiletries, to put them in ‘balikbayan’ [homecoming] boxes to send to our families back home,” he added.

Bangladeshi national Abdullah Miah told Gulf News he was doing the same thing. “I have filled three boxes already, each weighs 60 kilograms. I’m sending them on January 24, so I have until today to buy the remaining items that they need,” Miah, 32, said.

The Bangladeshi pipe fitter said he tries his best to set aside some money for DSF considering the good bargains. He said his shopping list included clothes for his wife, an emergency lantern, and shoes. “I’ve already bought a lot of stuff the other day. I just came back to add some more.”

For Filipino expatriate Danilo Exala, 42, a guest relations officer in Dubai, DSF helps in making his dreams for his family come true. Inside his shopping cart were food warming trays, a cutlery set and other such items.

“We have always dreamed of having our own eatery or canteen in the Philippines. This DSF, I have by far sent out five boxes worth of goods that we can use to start up our family business. This makes up the sixth,” Exala said.

“The DSF discounts help in that we are able to save on some purchases and buy more of what we need to send back home,” he added.

Gulf News
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