The Eid Al Fitr holiday has recently been declared as an official paid holiday for all private sector employees in the UAE by the Ministry of Labor. The paid holiday will be from Friday, June 15 till Saturday, June 16. This corresponds with the first and second day of the month of Shawwal. (Shawwal is the tenth lunar month in the Islamic calendar). Visitors to the area are surprised that the dates vary. This is because the monthly calendar is based on the moon phase and actual moon sightings. Note that most Muslims spend most of the first day of Eid at their home or at the home of family or friends. The next two days is when the city really comes alive.
For federal entities in the UAE, the Federal Authority for Government Human Resources has declared the Eid Al Fitr holidays will begin from Thursday, June 14.
For those visiting Dubai during Eid Al Fitr, the translation from Arabic is “the festival of breaking the fast”. The fast that it refers to is the month of fasting and reflection during Ramadan. It is customary to wish people “Eid Mubarak” which means “blessed Eid”.
Eid is a time of celebration and gift giving, which can translate to serious bargains at the shopping mall. Special sales are often posted at the last minute, so keep your eyes and ears open for these great deals! Eid is also celebrated with special performances of traditional dance and live music across Dubai. There will be many special activities and performances during the festive weekend and many of them are free.
And then there is the food… It should come as no surprise that a festival named for breaking a fast would be a foodie’s delight. Many restaurants will be offering special menus and pricing during the weekend. So come on out and enjoy. We wish you Eid Mubarak.