Russians top chart for big spenders at Dubai Shopping Festival

Visitors from Russia trump Saudis, Brits to take spending crowd at annual shopping bonanza
By Daniel Shane
Mon 04 Mar 2013 12:31 PM

Visitors from Russia were the biggest spenders during the recent Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF), according to the findings of a study.

According to payments firm Visa, more than US$589m was spent on non-UAE issued Visa cards during the month-long retail bonanza, representing a 19 percent increase on 2012’s amount.

Top of the pile were Russian shoppers, who loaded up on goods worth US$82.2m at Dubai’s malls, meaning they spent more than a third more than at least year’s DSF.

In second place were Saudi Arabia's shopaholics, spending US$66.8m (up 26 percent), followed by British buyers, who rang up more than US$53.3m (up 14 percent) in Visa transactions.

Rounding off the top ten were the likes of the US, Kuwait, India, Qatar and Angola, most of whom spent significantly more in 2013 than they did in 2012.

According to Visa, the most popular purchases during DSF included items such as jewellery, toys, cosmetics, clothing and electronics, which between them accounted for more than US$200m of spending.

Hotel bookings made up US$138m of spending, while travel and entertainment hit US$41m.

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