UAE extends weekend to start Friday afternoon and last through Sunday
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Shifting a long-standing religious observance policy common among Islamic nations, weekends in the United Arab Emirates will begin Friday afternoon come next year, the UAE government announced on Twitter on Dec. 7.
For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
The UAE will ring in the new year by transitioning to a 4 1/2-day work week starting Jan. 1, 2022, applicable to all federal employees in the country and aimed at “longer weekends to boost productivity and improve work-life balance.”
Friday and Saturday are the weekend days in most of the six countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council, which also includes Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain. This extension by the UAE breaks with much of the Middle East in observing a midday Friday prayer time in a country that is largely Muslim.
Instead, the UAE will hold Friday sermons and prayers after 1:15 p.m. throughout the year.
As for travelers, more time on the weekend means more time to enjoy typical weekend activities, such as Friday brunch, which the UAE is known for. Time will tell as to whether you can expect to brunch on both Fridays and Saturdays.
COVID-19-related travel restrictions depend on which country you are visiting in the UAE. For example, all those entering Dubai must show results of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure, while fully vaccinated travelers headed to Abu Dhabi must show a test taken within 48 hours before departure. Read more about traveling to the UAE here.
Featured photo by Umar Shariff Photography/Getty Images.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs up to two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees