New UAE weekend: Today is the last working Sunday for many

Starting January 1, 2022, the country will transition into a four-and-a-half-day workweek


A Staff Reporter

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Photo: File
Photo: File

Published: Sun 26 Dec 2021, 12:05 PM

Today — December 26, 2021 — marks the last working Sunday for many people across the UAE as the country transitions into a two-and-half-day weekend.

From the new year, Sunday will be part of the weekend for government sector workers, some private sector staff and students.

Starting January 1, 2022, the UAE will transition into a four-and-a-half-day workweek. The week will begin from Monday and last till Friday noon. Friday half-day, Saturday and Sunday will form the new weekend in the country.

This serves as the perfect New Year gift for the country’s residents as they will get to begin 2022 with a three-day break. December 31 is a Friday this year. Since it’s still in 2021, the day would be an official holiday. Saturday, January 1, is a holiday as well. Because the new workweek takes effect from the New Year, Sunday, January 2, is a holiday, too.

Sharjah will adopt a four-day workweek, with Friday, Saturday and Sunday forming the new weekend.


Government sector

Employees of federal government departments, and those of government entities in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Fujairah and Ras Al Khaimah will enjoy a two-and-half-day weekend.

For Sharjah government staff, Friday will be a full-day break in addition to Saturday and Sunday.

Private sector

The UAE’s Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, Dr. Abdulrahman Al Awar, had earlier said that the new labour law grants private companies the flexibility to choose the days off for employees.

Under the law, private sector employees are entitled to at least one day off, subject to increase as per the company’s discretion. “Since the announcement of the new workweek, we have seen several private companies setting their own off days for employees. Some have announced 3-day weekends, while others announced flexible work-from-home options,” Dr. Al Awar had said.

Schools and universities

Educational institutions across the country will follow the new workweek. This means that students and academic staff will enjoy a two-and-a-half-day weekend.

Schools can hold classes till a maximum of 12pm on Fridays. In Sharjah, schools will remain closed on Fridays.

Academic institutions have been given the flexibility to increase daily timings or hold online classes after school hours to make up for the loss of the academic day

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