Dubai: Ramadan is here and Dubai is buzzing with shopping sales, events, deals and more. While the emirate is getting busy with a line-up of family-friendly cultural, F&B and community-focused experiences for UAE residents, they, (residents) are doing their bit to have the best Ramadan with family and friends this year.
We spoke to a cross-section of people to see what they are buying and how they are preparing for Ramadan.
Indian expat Amin Kazi, residing at Jumeirah Park Dubai, said his wife Pooja has been preparing their house for Ramadan. “We have done some renovations and revamped our house. We are ready to welcome Ramadan,” he said. The family has mainly bought a stock of non-perishable items so they don’t have to frequently get out to source them. As the CEO of a company in Dubai called Clean Hygienics Group, Amin said Ramadan is a special month for his staff as well.
Pakistani expat Syeda Bushra Ali, 38 said: “We look up for the month of Ramadan the whole year long because it is a month of blessings. We try our best to make the most out of this month by planning for it beforehand. Like last year, this year too Ramadan came in summers. That is why I did the grocery shopping accordingly. Our traditional Iftar consists of fruit salad, coconut water or laban and Harees (a traditional Arabic dish made of wheat and meat) and dates of course. For sohour, we opt for either overnight oats, sandwiches (which I prefer preparing the night before) or a protein bar to keep me going throughout the day.
Tunisian expat Nouha Bouallegue, telecom manager, 41 said: “We have traditional preparations that start two weeks before Ramadan. We paint the walls, deep clean the kitchen, bring out special plates and cutlery, buy decoration for the tables and hang some crescent and stars lights. We prepare the dates stuffed with nuts. So my shopping has revolved around all this. For example, I shopped for nuts and honey from Global Village this year. The rest, like dates, were bought from Carrefour as there were discounts on.”
Syrian expat Marwa M Al Shikheh, 30, said she has stocked up on some non-perishables like rice, Indian dates, dry apricots. “Ramadan is a time when the energy can be a little low. So we want to save on that energy. That is why we stock up on non-perishables,” she said.
Meanwhile, UAE retailers have announced massive discounts, in some cases up to 80 per cent ahead of Ramadan.
LuLu Group had its pre-Ramadan sales called Ahlan Ramadan, which started on April 1 and until start of the April 13. The group is offering between 20 and 35 per cent discount on groceries during the month. The hypermarket chain has also launched ‘Ramadan kits’, which are pre-packed Ramadan boxes that come in two variants, worth Dh80 and Dh120. These include essential commodities such as rice, sugar, sauces, etc; and cost 20-25 per cent less than the regular market price.
Al Maya Group is offering up to 50 per cent discounts on certain products across categories, during Ramadan. Kamal Vachani, group director of Al Maya Group, said: “All our stores will have Ramadan promotions throughout Ramadan. On weekends, we are offering up to 25 per cent discount as well as 50 per cent on certain products like dates, butter, water, fruits, vegetables, frozen foods, bakery products, pasta, ketchup, olives, among others,” he added.