Ramadan 2022 in UAE: Covid rules, Taraweeh prayers, Iftar timings, work hours; what you need to know

This will be the third socially distanced Ramadan


Sahim Salim

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Published: Thu 17 Mar 2022, 12:36 PM

Last updated: Thu 17 Mar 2022, 2:38 PM

Just 15 days remain for the holy month of Ramadan to begin in the UAE. As per astronomical calculations, the holy month will begin on April 2. The actual date is subject to moon sighting, on which the Islamic calendar is based.

This will be the third socially distanced Ramadan, but this holy month will be the most ‘normal’ as compared to the previous two.

The UAE has restored normalcy across all sectors, with daily Covid cases and deaths registering a sharp decline over the past two months.

Here is all you need to know about Ramadan 2022 in UAE.

Will UAE mosques host Taraweeh prayers?

Taraweeh is a late evening prayer hosted across mosques during the holy month of Ramadan. In 2020, Muslims had offered the prayers at home as a Covid safety measure. In 2021, Taraweeh, a congregational prayer, resumed at mosques with strict rules.

The guidelines for this year’s prayers have not been announced yet. However, Taraweeh will likely be hosted normally since most of the restrictions have been removed — including those at mosques.

Are there any restrictions on offering prayers at mosques?

Congregational prayers are almost back to pre-pandemic normal across places of worship in the UAE. In February, the NCEMA had announced further relaxation in rules. Copies of the holy Quran are now allowed to be stacked at mosques. Worshippers need to be masked while praying and maintain a one-metre distance from one another.

What are the Iftar and Imsak timings this Ramadan?

If April 2 is, indeed, the first day of the holy month, the call for Fajr prayer will be given out at 4.51am. Iftar (time to end the fast) is at 6.39pm. This means that the fasting hours on day one of Ramadan is 13 hours and 48 minutes.

On Ramadan 30 (May 1) the Fajr prayer call will be given out at 4.20am, while Iftar is at 6.53pm. This means that by the time the month ends, the hours would have increased to 14 hours and 33 minutes.

You can find the prayer timings during the holy month here.

Are there any restrictions on hosting iftars?

No restrictions have been announced yet. In February, the UAE had lifted capacity restrictions for social events. Weddings and other social events have been operating at full capacity. So, it’s likely that there are no restrictions on hosting Iftars.

Will Iftar tents be allowed?

Iftar tents were banned in 2020 and 2021 as a Covid safety measure, but they will be allowed this year. Covid safety rules have been specified for setting them up:

  • Permits from the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) are mandatory.
  • Those inside must maintain a distance of at least one metre from one another.
  • Iftar tents must be designed in the form of a canopy that is open from all sides or be air-conditioned.
  • Entry into the tents will be staggered to prevent crowding. They will start receiving fasting Muslims up to two hours before Iftar.
  • Security guards or volunteers must be stationed to organise the entry and exit process.
  • The faithful must avoid handshakes while greeting one another.
  • Single-use tablecloths are mandatory. Tent hosts are also advised to use disposable plates, glasses and spoons.

What are the work timings for private and public sector employees?

Reduced working hours have been announced for both public and private sector employees.

Public sector: Federal government employees will work from 9am to 2.30pm on weekdays (Monday to Thursday). On Fridays, which is a half working day, the timings would be from 9am to 12 noon.

Private sector: Daily work hours would be reduced by two.

Will school timings be reduced as well?

Unified or standard school timings are yet to be announced. However, school hours are generally not allowed to exceed five hours per day.

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