ramadan starts

It’s now official: Ramadan starts tomorrow

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It’s just been officially confirmed – the Holy Month of Ramadan will begin in the UAE, Oman and Saudi on Saturday.

The UAE Moon Sighting Committee have just announced that the first day of Ramadan 1438 will be on Saturday May 27 (meaning the first day of the Eid holidays will be Sunday June 25 or Monday June 26). Remember, Ramadan lasts for either 29 or 30 days every year.

Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa and Indonesia have also all officially declared that Saturday will be the first day of Ramadan due to the birth of the new moon.

As has our GCC neighbour Oman: here’s the Moon Sighting Committee there at around the moment they too declared that Ramadan will begin on Saturday May 27…

This means that tonight – Friday May 26 – marks the end of the month of Sha’aban.

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WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR HOLIDAYS & WORKING HOURS?

This means Eid Al-Fitr (the holiday that celebrates the breaking of the fast) will most likely begin on Sunday June 25.

Then the month of Haj will likely begin on August 23, and will last 29 days. This will mean Arafat Day will fall on Thursday August 31, and Eid Al Adha on Friday September 1. Eid Al Adha honours Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son Ismail (which is why goats are symbolically sacrificed over this period).

Previously we reported that Ramadan was slated to begin on Thursday May 25.

Remember, during Ramadan, UAE labour law stipulates that all workers are entitled to work two hours less each day (and yet still be compensated for a standard day, which according to labour law is eight hours). However, non-Muslims working in DIFC are not entitled to the extra two hours off due to the area following its own labour laws.

Ramadan is based on the lunar calendar and so begins 10 to 12 days earlier each year.

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