A recent study by American Express Middle East involving five Gulf Cooperation Council countries found that residents of Qatar spend approximately $4,000 a month, or about 12 percent of their average household income, on luxury items.
The findings indicate Qataris spend more money on luxury goods than the rest of the region.
The survey involved high-income homes in the UAE, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar and Kuwait, and was conducted by Gfk.
Further results found that about 24 percent of respondents reduced planned spending over the past year, and transportation and rent ranked as the top items for funds spent at 79 and 74 percent, respectively.
Approximately 24 percent of Qatar residents said they will spend less on fine dining and reprioritize spending to focus on personal wellness over the next year.
“The economic headwinds across the region are affecting many and we have seen a significant switch in how people are using their disposable income,” American Express Middle East CEO Mazin Khoury said. “Despite that, we're still seeing buoyant spending on luxury experiences and goods.”
The survey suggests a similar story in all five countries surveyed. Of those living in Qatar, 72 percent said they spent more on food and beverages for the home while 26 percent said they reduced dining out expenses throughout 2015. Oman residents displayed the same habits with 88 percent of respondents reporting spending more on food and drink for the home and 41 percent noting a reduced spending on socializing. The cut were even higher in Kuwait with 56 percent of people spending less on going out and 85 percent spending more on food for the home.
“American Express has been in the Middle East for over 50 years and throughout this time we have helped our card members manage their finances through the ups and downs of economic change,” Khoury said. “Whether they use their cards to pay for their weekly shopping or a holiday, they have confidence knowing that our organization is behind them providing them with world class benefits, customer service and security.”