With less than a month till Christmas, the economic crisis continues to be a barrier for many Lebanese who cannot afford to celebrate as they used to in past years.
Although many shops are packed with Christmas decorations to sell, it looks that this year’s Christmas is the least to worry about with all the other rising expenses.
Window shopping is the maximum that the majority can afford with Christmas tree prices ranging from 1 million LBP to 5 million LBP and more.
This is more than the minimum wage in Lebanon with the loss of worth in the currency.
Christmas tree lights are sold at 100,000 LBP and plus, with the nativity ranging from 1.5 million LBP to 2 million LBP
In light of the financial crisis and these outrageous costs, the majority of the Lebanese will not be renovating the Christmas decorations at their homes.
Lana Khattar, a home goods shop owner in Lebanon, said: “The exchange rate of the dollar has forced these prices to emerge as all our supplies are imported from outside so we have to price our goods based on the black market dollar exchange.”
Before the crisis hit, a home could be filled with many Christmas decorations with 200,000 LBP. That was when the exchange rate was at 1,500 LBP/USD.
With the inflation in prices, many shops were forced to shut down their doors as the number of shoppers has been massively reduced.
Shop owners are worried about the extremely expensive electricity bill, the rise in rent, and the rising dollar rate.