New UAE weekend: First working Friday today; Jumuah prayer after 1.15pm

Today is also the first Friday students in all Emirates will be attending school

File photo
File photo

A Staff Reporter

Published: Thu 6 Jan 2022, 4:33 PM

Last updated: Fri 7 Jan 2022, 12:05 AM

The UAE has now transitioned into a shorter workweek. Residents experienced their first Monday blues on January 3 as the country officially began the workweek.

Friday half-day, Saturday and Sunday form the new weekend in the country.

And today will be another first: It will be the first working Friday for employees and the first school day for students in all Emirates, except Sharjah. Sharjah has adopted a three-day weekend that offers full Fridays off to government employees and students.

Mosques in six Emirates will host Friday prayers and sermons after 1.15pm. This will help government employees and students get off work and school, respectively, by 12 noon and be part of the congregational act of worship.

Again, this does not apply to Sharjah. Since the Emirate is offering the full day off, its Friday prayer timings remain unchanged.

Most of the private companies across the country have shifted to a Saturday-Sunday weekend, without adopting the half-Friday off. They are offering midday breaks to staff so that they can take part in the prayer.

The Federal Authority for Government Human Resources had earlier today announced flexible timings and work-from-home options for employees.


Federal government entities must ensure that at least 70 per cent of employees are on site to serve the public and ensure smooth flow of transactions.

The new workweek system, which started from the start of 2022, aims to help employees strike a better work-life balance and increase productivity.

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