Sunday, October 28, 2007

Dubai prices

The other day I was talking about the comparative prices of things in Dubai and whether overall it's less or more expensive to live here than in, say, western Europe.

A couple of things have cropped up that are relevant.

I was in Debenhams, the UK store, in Mall of the Emirates over the weekend, passing the time while Mrs Seabee looked for something to spend her money on.

A lot of the labels on clothing had the original £ price printed on them, with a dirham sticker on top. Careful peeling revealed that, at 7.5 exchange rate:

*some items are more expensive here.
*some items are the same price here.
*some items are cheaper here.

I guess the advice has to be that if you're visiting here from Europe, or visiting Europe from here, and you plan to buy a particular item, then you should check your home price before you leave. If it's cheaper at home, buy it when you get back. If it's cheaper 'there' then buy it there.

The other thing was an anonymous comment left on my posting about the 'rip off' price of steak in Dubai. The 'rip off' price is Spinneys selling New Zealand rib-eye steak at Dh65 a kilo.

I checked earlier with a friend in New Zealand and today they're paying - for their own meat which hasn't been airfreighted halfway round the world:

*Fillet steak Dh84 a kilo
*Porterhouse steak Dh73
*Rump steak Dh45

And remember that the best quality product is always exported. As I've been suggesting, many things are still a bargain in Dubai.


nzm said...

And the meat that we buy "at home" for that exhorbitant price is the second rate stuff that hasn't met the export quality standards and is then sold on the local market.

Still - it's bloody nice to go and buy it fresh from the local butcher, instead of worrying whether it's been frozen, defrosted, refrozen and then defrosted again before it hits the Spinney's fridges!

LDU said...

Are all the butchers there Halal? Is there a government policy that requires all meat sold in Dubai to be Halal or something along those lines?

Seabee said...

nzm, my friend there was complaining that fish was more expensive than the meat - in a country surrounded by water!

LDU, the meat sold in general is halal but many supermarkets have a separate pork section, clearly marked to warn muslims, where pork and anything containing pork products are sold.
(I haven't forgotten the Christmas photos I promised to post, I'll try to do it later).

nzm said...

seabee: yes - and most of the fish is imported now from Vietnam, Thailand and China! Oz has laws that state that shops must advertise where the product has come from because of all the hormones/additives issues.

ldu: all meat coming in from Oz and NZ is halal. Some years ago, the abattoirs adopted halal kill methods on some processing lines so that they provide meat to the Middle East. said...

dubai isn't too expensive if you compare it to western europe, certain places in the US, and so on... but overall, it is a pretty damn expensive place for the region.

i*maginate said...

Seabee, in terms of clothing, it's not really only the price one should check before heading out to the UK-equivalent store.

You might need to be female to know this (hehe) but the major difference is that the range/style of clothing on the shelves in the UAE is CONSIDERABLY more different here, in that the fashion buyers cater to the "local taste."

Debenhams is huger in the UK, and so is M&S & Harvey Nicks - even though the prices may be the same/similar, I would rather buy stuff from abroad only because the range is larger, and I will probably find something I actually like.

Same goes for men's clothing: no Gieves & Hawkes, no bespoke tailors to match the calibre offered in London.

I'm not really into multi-coloured polka dots, huge floral patterns or white lace trimmings on my day-to-day wear.

Anonymous said...

i am doing a purchasing power parity project for my economy class and was wondering if you could help by giving me the prices of necessities and luxury items in Dubai.. such as 3 kilos of rice and flour, the average cost of a pair of jeans, jacket, shirt, eyeglasses.