An Expat's Ramadan survival guide

Published July 12th, 2013 - 04:45 GMT
For Illustrative Purposes (courtesy of four seasons hotel in riyadh)
For Illustrative Purposes (courtesy of four seasons hotel in riyadh)
Dubai: With the right attitude, non-Muslim expatriates and visitors can have a great time during Ramadan in the UAE. It’s a wonderful moment to immerse in local culture, as Emiratis and Muslim expatriate residents observe the month-long fast from dawn till sunset.

It’s an auspicious period of heightened spirituality. So it is best for expatriates and visitors to observe more discretion and increased sensitivity. Ramadan nights are usually festive and they start with iftar. Here’s a run-down of simple yet important things expatriates must remember during Ramadan.

During the day

  • Eating, chewing gum, drinking and smoking in public during Ramadan is viewed as disrespectful.
  • If you’re healthy and able to join the fast, good for you. If not, you may take your own food to work.
  • Most restaurants are shut during the day.
  • Some establishments designate places where non-Muslims can eat, smoke and drink in the day.
  • Be careful about serving refreshments when you have Muslim visitors over.
  • In many establishments, work is shortened by two hours during this month.

At night

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