Welcome to Abu Dhabi, now that you have a great teaching job, have finally settled in your accommodations and the dust has settled, you reach that point where you actually have some free time.
One of the best ways to spend your time in Abu Dhabi is in the malls shopping. Lucky for you there are plenty of places to shop. Within Abu Dhabi City itself there are at least seven large malls where you can find anything from traditional rugs, to the latest fashions. Some malls have as many as 200 stores and all of the malls are air conditioned.
In Abu Dhabi most chain stores will have fairly rigid prices, but in the more traditional stores it is perfectly acceptable to bargain over the price. This is especially true of stores that sell antiques and rugs. There are a few areas left that have the traditional market feel, they tend to be outside of the modern mall structures.
When hunting for bargains Abu Dhabi: beware of fake designer goods, they are not as plentiful as they once were due to government crackdown, because they are illegal. Trying to return home with them will potentially land you in trouble.
Due to its position in the world as trading hub clothing costs in Abu Dhabi tend to be fairly competitive, and there tends to be no sales tax, and very little in the way of import duties. If you are a real bargain hunter, there tends to be a discount season at the end of and in the middle of the year. Remember that custom tailoring can be a reasonably priced option as well.
When grocery shopping, food costs tend to vary a lot based on their nature. Local items will be a little more affordable whereas import items from the west and fresh fruits and vegetables tend to be expensive due to the need for importing. There are plenty of fish markets and the fish are caught and brought to the markets daily. Please remember that Abu Dhabi is Muslim and as such pork will have a separate section of the store, where Emirate citizens are not allowed to enter.
As with most things, the price of Electronic goods will be also be competitive to those of central Europe and not nearly as expensive as London or Moscow.
In the end, shopping in Abu Dhabi is a great option to spend your time and to meet new people.