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The UAE moves to a Saturday-Sunday weekend

With Friday afternoon remaining part of the weekend, the UAE will be the world’s first nation to offer a 4.5-day working week

In a bid to align with global markets in countries that follow a Saturday-Sunday weekend, the UAE will adopt a longer weekend.

The new weekend timings will begin on Friday afternoon and run through Saturday and Sunday. Sunday is currently the first day of the UAE’s five-day working week.

The extended weekend timings will make the UAE the first nation in the world to offer its citizens a 4.5-day working week

Friday’s religious sermons and prayers will be held after 1.15pm ensuring Muslim worship is not disrupted by the change in working days.

Initially, from 1 January 2022, all federal government departments will move to the new weekend timings.

It’s the prerogative of private sector companies whether or not they adopt the new weekend timings.

The hospitality industry could potentially benefit from the switch, with more leisure time allowing residents to make more reservations at hotels and restaurants.

Friday brunch could be the new after-work gathering for the country’s professionals

Saturday brunch could become as popular as Friday brunch, and Sunday could now host family-friendly brunches and lunches in line with Western traditions that would appeal to the extensive expat population.

The announcement was made via Twitter by the UAE’s media office. The Tweet said: ‘UAE announces today that it will transition to a four and a half day working week, with Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday forming the new weekend.’

 

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