Emirati teens struggling by on $130 a week…
Teenagers in the UAE, who get 20 times more pocket money than their Egyptian counterparts, are the most pampered in the world, according to a study by AMRB MENA.
April 18, 2010 4:05 by AMRB MENA
Saudi teens are more restricted, especially in how they may dress.
Given this, the tailored look is more popular there, with one out of three preferring it strongly – understandable given the paucity of ready-made abaya/thobe choices. Defying social norms is harder but they explore ways to test the limits.
Thus there is a niche segment of budding fashionistas anxious to emulate their UAE cousins. This might explain why a fashion brand like Zara features on UAE and Saudi teens’ list of favorite brands.
Health and beauty is still a female domain, with more girls than boys spending on it. On average, Middle Eastern girls spend double the amount boys do. And girls in the UAE and Saudi Arabia spend a lot more than their global counterparts. Egyptian girls pay less attention to health and beauty – again due to their having less money.
Also, perhaps because they enjoy more freedom in how they dress vis-à-vis Saudi Arabia and the UAE, Egyptians girls rely less on beauty aids.
In short, Arab teens have taken global trends in technology, fashion, entertainment and lifestyle and adapted them to the local culture.
AMRB worked with US-based TRU, a leader in teen research. In 2008-09, TRU conducted the Global Teen Research study across 16 countries. The 2009-10 edition was expanded to cover 25 countries including the UAE*, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.
About the study
The study covered local Arab male and female teens aged 12-19 years in a range of income groups. We conducted face-to-face interviews with 2,000 teenagers (KSA, 800; UAE, 400; and Egypt, 800). In the UAE and Egypt, we interviewed respondents across two cities each (UAE: Dubai and Abu Dhabi; Egypt: Cairo and Alexandria). In Saudi Arabia we went to Jeddah, Riyadh and Dammam. 2009-2010. UAE teens in this article refers only to Emirati teens.
- Article by Sai Bhaswana and Ram Dhara, AMRB MENA