A third of UAE residents have bulk-shopped during social distancing

Time Out’s Social Distancing Survey finds consumers also ordered fewer food deliveries

A third of UAE residents have bulk-shopped during social distancing

Just over a third of UAE residents described themselves as having shopped in bulk since social distancing measures began in the Emirates, according to Time Out’s UAE-wide Social Distancing Survey.

The survey, which polled more than 1,000 adult UAE residents in May, asked “Since the UAE’s social distancing measures, have you shopped in bulk?”, in terms of buying large quantities of certain products for your own household.

Thirty-two percent of respondents said yes, while a majority 66 percent said they had not, while two percent were unsure.

Those who shopped in bulk were asked which items they’d purchased in bulk. Fifty-seven percent said they’d stocked up on dry goods, 57 percent on canned goods, 52 percent on cleaning products, 38 percent on meat and 35 percent on fruit and veg. Frozen foods, baby products and pet foods were most commonly cited as other bulk purchases.

While the majority said they hadn’t shopped in bulk, 77 percent of respondents said their households had created home-cooked more since social distancing began, with 21 percent saying their households were doing the same amount of cooking, and just 2 percent saying they cooked less.

Of more than 600 respondents who shared their favourite meals to cook at home, answers were overwhelmingly in favour of pasta dishes.

Meanwhile, 34 percent of survey respondents said they’d made banana bread since social distancing measures began.

In a country with one of the most prolific food delivery markets in the world, and despite many of the Emirates’ most renowned restaurants offering food delivery for the first time during lockdown, the sector appears likely to have taken a hit during the period.

Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed saying they had ordered fewer meal deliveries since social distancing began, compared with 22 percent who said they had ordered about the same, and 11 percent who said they had ordered more.

Time Out’s Social Distancing Survey, which collected responses from adults living across the Emirates, ran for the month of May, and covered a number of topics, including the impact of the pandemic on personal finances, rent, family life, dining habits, shopping habits, staycations, holidays and leisure.

For more from Time Out’s Social Distancing Survey, click here.

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