(MENAFN - Arab News) Poor and needy expats are struggling to celebrate Eid as they suffer from loneliness and financial stress due to high prices.
Some expatriates have complained that heading to the traditional venues to celebrate Eid, such as parks, restaurants and entertainment centers have become too expensive.
"Eid is a very hard time for me as I have to intensify my work in cooking, house-cleaning and taking care of guests," said Khairia, an Indian maid working for a Saudi family.
"Saudi traditions in Eid call for family's big gathering, eating together and enjoy special days in restaurants. All maids also gather every Eid, but they gather to work more and more."
However, some expat workers are eager to work during Eid when their families are far away.
Umran Mohammed, a Pakistani who works in a resort, said that working during Eid is the perfect way to forget his isolation.
"I do not mind if I work at Eid time. In fact I prefer to work during Eid. It is better than sitting alone," Mohammed said.
"Since I came to Saudi Arabia I never spent Eid with my wife or family. I see all families, even expatriates, gather and enjoy Eid, but I can't enjoy Eid like them as my salary is only SR 500 a month,'' Mohammed said.
Hasan Humidan, a Sudanese driver who has lived in the Kingdom for 10 years, said he struggles with the high prices during Eid.
"In the past I was able to enjoy Eid with my family spending around SR 100. These days I can't enjoy Eid, although that my salary is SR 1,500. In the past I was able to go with my wife and daughters to a mall and let my kids play.
Nowadays, going to a mall, or park would cost me SR 300. Moreover, If I want to take my family to a restaurant it would cost me SR 400," he said.
A Yemeni worker said: "I am celebrating Eid by gathering with my Yemeni friends. We all share the same lifestyle and always prefer
to go to swim and smoke shisha during Eid.
As we are singles we don't have the opportunity to visit family locations such as malls, parks or restaurants.
Some private companies organize events and festivals as part of their corporate social responsibility programs, but these programs do not include poor families and workers.