Ramadan in Dubai: What to Expect?
14 March 2023
Ramadan is a special time for Muslims around the world, including in Dubai. Here is a guide to help you understand what to expect and how to best experience Ramadan.
Understanding Ramadan in Dubai
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and it is observed by Muslims worldwide as a time of spiritual reflection, self-discipline, and charitable giving.
Around 76% of the UAE population are practicing Muslims, they will fast from dawn until sunset, refraining from food, drink, and other physical needs during the day. The Metropolis is transformed into a more subdued and reflective place during this time.
The Dates of Ramadan
The dates of Ramadan change every year as the Islamic calendar is based on the lunar cycle. In 2023, Ramadan in Dubai is expected to start on 23rd March depending on the moon sighting.
What to expect during Iftar
Iftar is the meal that breaks the fast at sunset, and it is a significant moment of the day. You can expect to see different and exciting activities in Dubai during iftar time, as people gather to break their fast with family and friends. Many restaurants and hotels offer iftar buffets, and it is a great opportunity to indulge in traditional Arabic cuisine.
Visitors are welcome to visit the beautiful mosques in Dubai. During Ramadan, mosques become even more significant as people gather for their daily prayers, including Taraweeh, which is a special prayer performed only during Ramadan.
Charitable giving is an essential aspect of Ramadan, organizations and companies in Dubai engage in various charitable activities. You can also take part in charitable activities during Ramadan, such as volunteering at a local charity organization or donating to a good cause.
Business As Usual
It is business as usual during the day for most businesses in Dubai. However, there are changes to keep in mind during Ramadan:
Working hours: Businesses in Dubai reduce their working hours during Ramadan, with some offices closing early in the afternoon. It is important to check with your employer or the business you plan to visit to confirm their working hours during the month of Ramadan.
Restaurants and cafes: With the announcements of new regulations in 2022, Commercial establishments such as restaurants and café can operate or serve meals as usual. There are others who will be closed during the day, but they will be open for iftar, which is the meal that breaks the fast at sunset. Many restaurants and hotels offer special iftar buffets during Ramadan, and it is a great opportunity to experience traditional Arabic cuisine.
Shopping Malls: Dubai’s shopping malls are open during Ramadan, their hours may be extended to during the fasting month. Some malls may open earlier in the day and close later at night, while others may be closed during the day and reopen in the evening.
Traffic: Traffic can be heavier than usual in Dubai during Ramadan, particularly in the late afternoon as people rush to get home for iftar.
Respect for local customs: It is important to be respectful of local customs and traditions during Ramadan. It is illegal to eat, drink, or smoke in public during fasting hours, and visitors are encouraged to dress modestly and avoid loud music or behavior in public places.
Overall, while there are some changes to keep in mind during Ramadan, most businesses in Dubai continue to operate as usual during the day. It is important to be mindful of local customs and traditions and to embrace the unique atmosphere of the city during this special time.
How can EZONE support you during Ramadan?
Although we have shortened our office timings, it’s still business as usual. If you have a solid business idea or planning to setup your own business, any PRO or visa requirements, we are just a call 800-EZONEUAE or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) away.
Ramadan or any other time, there may never be a ‘perfect’ time to start a business. Waiting for the perfect timing may result in missed opportunities.