Egyptians ‘spend more in Ramadan’
Cairo, August 7, 2012
Fifty-four per cent of Egyptians spend more during Ramadan than the rest of the year; whereas 29 per cent spend the same and only 10 per cent spend less, according to a new survey.
The survey, commissioned by Visa Egypt and undertaken by YouGov, polled 602 Egyptian consumers across the country and inquired about budgeting, money management and spending habits during the month of Ramadan.
Similar to the findings from 2011, the majority of Egyptian respondents (55 per cent in 2011) claimed to spend more during the month of Ramadan than any other month of the year, with 42 per cent spending more than EGP 1,000 extra during the holy month.
According to the online survey, the largest expenditures during Ramadan were groceries (ranked first by 83 per cent of respondents) followed by charity (71 per cent) which matched last year’s spending trends.
The next largest expenditure during Ramadan was dining out (58 per cent) while entertainment like movies, concerts and smoking shisha ranked last with 42 percentage points, said the report.
Although more than half of respondents claimed they spend more during the month of Ramadan, only 22 per cent claimed they unnecessarily overspend, which is higher than last year’s 12 per cent who claimed to unnecessarily overspend, while the majority (66 per cent) say they ‘do not spend more than is necessary.’
This indicates that a majority of Egyptians keep close track of their spending habits over the course of the month.
The survey results further support this notion with 31 per cent of respondents claiming they always adhere to a set monthly budget while another 30 per cent adhere to a set budget on most occasions.
This practice of budgeting was found to be more prevalent among older age groups (40+ years old).
“Ramadan may necessitate higher spending levels, so it is important for all to embrace responsible money management skills like planning and budgeting,” said Tarek Elhousseiny, general manager for Visa North and Francophone Africa.
“Defining and adhering to a monthly budget is an effective way to control and manage expenses in order to ensure that unnecessary overspending is avoided.”
When asked about their personal financial education, 46 per cent of Egyptians claimed they received no financial education while 24 per cent said they experienced some form while at university.
Over half of those asked (51 per cent) believed that financial education should be taught as a requirement in both high school and university. When it comes to managing their personal finances, 56 per cent of respondents said that they keep track by visiting the bank in person, with a cheque book, or by hand.
According to the survey, the areas where Ramadan spending allocation shifted from 2011’s survey were in dining out (ranked third in 2012 but fifth last year), clothing, (ranked fourth this year and fifth last year), gifts, (shifted one place from fifth to sixth) and travel, which also shifted one place from seventh to sixth place, highlighting respondents’ keen intentions for local or international tourism this month. – TradeArabia News Service