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Wednesday August 10, 2022

UAE changes official weekend to Saturday-Sunday

UAE has also announced new working hours; 8 working hours a day on Monday to Thursday from 7:30am to 3:30pm

By Web Desk
December 07, 2021
UAE flag. File photo
UAE flag. File photo

DUBAI: In a major move, the UAE Tuesday announced that it will transition to a four and a half-day working week, with Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday forming the new weekend.

The "national working week" will be mandatory for government bodies from January and is aimed at improving work-life balance and economic competitiveness, state media said on Tuesday.

"The UAE is the first nation in the world to introduce a national working week shorter than the global five-day week," official news agency WAM reported.

The UAE will become the only Gulf country with a Saturday-Sunday weekend, a move that brings it into line with most of the non-Arab world. The weekend will start at noon on Fridays, the day of prayer in Muslim countries.

"The extended weekend comes as part of the UAE government´s efforts to boost work-life balance and enhance social wellbeing, while increasing performance to advance the UAE´s economic competitiveness."

Key features of new UAE policy

  • New system to apply in federal government entities
  • 8 working hours a day on Monday to Thursday from 7:30am to 3:30pm
  • 4.5 working hours on Friday from 7:30am to 12:00pm
  • Friday sermons and prayers to be held after 1:15pm all year long in UAE
  • Possibility of flexible working hours and work-from-home options on Fridays
  • Longer weekends to boost productivity and improve work-life balance
  • Starting from 1st of January, 2022