Many consumers wonder about the prices of products in airport duty-free shops, and how low their prices are compared to the prevailing prices of shops in that country, especially since the prices of duty-free shops in airports are often free of taxes and customs fees, which prompts many consumers to order products from travelers or Purchasing their needs from duty-free shops at airports, while some believe that products in duty-free shops inside airports are more expensive than others.
Okaz, in turn, monitored the most prominent differences in the prices of products, to see the price differences, and whether it is cheaper to buy from free markets or at prevailing prices from the market.
Sales without tax
Many duty-free shops inside airports promote that the prices of their products are cheaper than in cities. At King Abdulaziz Airport in Jeddah, one of the companies operating the duty-free shop places an advertisement stating (shop without tax, simply cheaper, and save 30% from local markets).
Most popular cigarettes
Cigarettes are the best-selling products in airport duty free markets, as they are much cheaper than their prevailing prices in local markets within cities. The reason for their cheap prices in Saudi Arabia is due to two reasons: the first is that their prices are free from the (selective tax) imposed in Saudi Arabia at a rate of 100% on the basic prices of tobacco, in addition To calculate the value-added tax on the final price of cigarettes at a rate of 15%. If the basic price of a pack of smoke was 10 riyals, then the selective tax would be imposed on it at a rate of 100%, to become 20 riyals, then a value-added tax of 15%, so that the value of the pack would be 23 riyals in the local markets, with an increase It is 130%, while in airport duty free shops it will be sold at the basic price, in addition to a slight increase compared to the high rental prices.
“Okaz” met the traveler Moath Farhan, who explained that the prices of cigarettes in duty-free shops are the cheapest compared to the prevailing prices inside cities, because they are free of the two “selective and value-added” taxes. with the passport.
Confidence in the quality of products
And the traveler, Azzam Al-Kedidi, stated that what distinguishes duty-free shops is the consumer’s confidence in the quality of the products, in light of the presence of a number of non-original products in some stores within cities, which makes shopping at airports more reliable, although the prices of some products in duty-free shops are more expensive than Prices prevailing in cities.
And he indicated that he usually buys from duty-free shops with the surplus amounts from the trip in the country’s currency upon return. The “excess” spent amounts are the main reason for him buying duty-free products, especially since currency exchange rates in airports are more expensive compared to prices inside cities, which is what drives him to buy products. With the surplus amounts from the free market when he travels.
Branches are more expensive
Many well-known brands open branches inside airports in the free zone, as these branches resort to selling their products in “dollars or euros” in many airports of countries that do not deal in these two currencies, but the main goal is to display the prices of their products in euros or The dollar is to reduce the prices of products, to delude consumers with low prices.
While the comprehensive centers sell many products of various brands, the prices are comparable to the prices prevailing in the cities.
For his part, economist Dr. Salem Bajaja stressed that the prices of products in free markets cannot be classified as always expensive or always cheap, as they depend on the product to be purchased. Products that are subject to several taxes and customs fees, such as cigarettes, are significantly cheaper in free markets. Other products, such as perfumes, for example, differ according to the offers. When there are offers in the markets scattered in cities, they are considered cheaper by a large difference, but the prices of other products are sold more expensive compared to the prevailing price.
Legalization of sales
Many free markets regulate the sales of products that are popular and popular with travelers. Products such as tobacco and honey, which are usually subject to a 100% selective tax, are sold in free markets in a regulated manner. When the buyer desires some products, the seller requires that the passport be attached to link the invoice to the passport. In order to reduce tax manipulation of employees.
200% increase in the price of “free” liquids
Many products are sold in local markets within cities at prevailing prices that are much cheaper than those sold in duty free markets, and price differences appear between the products between duty free markets and their counterparts in regular markets for low-value products such as “water”, as a 550 ml bottle of water is sold in regular stores in Jeddah At a price of only one riyal, while it is sold in the free market in Jeddah airport at a price of 3 riyals, which means an increase in its prices by 200% in the free market.
What contributed to the rise in the prices of liquids in duty-free markets is that airport customs prevent the entry of liquids of 100 ml or more from outside the airport into the aircraft, while it is allowed to purchase liquids from the free market after completing customs and entering them on the plane, which contributed to the increase in liquid prices. In the duty-free market compared to shop prices within cities.