New UAE weekend will help employees strike a better work-life balance, residents say

Decision aims to align the UAE with global markets


Sherouk Zakaria

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Published: Tue 7 Dec 2021, 9:35 PM

Last updated: Thu 9 Dec 2021, 2:46 PM

Social media and messaging apps were set abuzz with the UAE’s ground-breaking announcement of the new working week that grants government sector employees, schools and universities a 2.5-day weekend.

Citizens and residents hailed the longer weekend for its positive impact on both their professional and personal life.

The new Monday-Friday week comes into effect starting January 2022 with aims to align the UAE with global markets and help employees strike a better work-life balance.


Mohammed Abu Louz, Editor at the Sharjah Department of Culture

Longer weekends give us more time to spend with our families, enroll in training courses or pursue higher education, all of which reflect positively on work performance. I will spend the extra time next year on reading more and working on new literary projects.

Marwan Gamaleldin, Financial accountant at Abu Dhabi National Hotels

Setting Friday as a half working day is a double benefit. I get to spend the mornings making more real-time trading deals and connections with international companies and closing up the work week, while enjoying the rest of it off. From a financial aspect, the new work week brings the UAE closer to global markets, which makes current transactions occur much faster and with less issues from foreign companies and banks.

Khalwa Alblooshi, Senior Analyst at Dubai Economy and Tourism

The new work week can help employees strike a better work-life balance and have more time to engage in other hobbies. We will find out more positive aspects of the new system once further data and statistics are gathered after its implementation in 2022.

Khalid Alhajri, Director at Department of Economic Development

Once again, the UAE proves to be an agile and advanced nation that makes decisions under a long-term vision. The Saturday-Sunday weekend sets a great balance in aligning with the UAE's banks and markets with world’s major economies, while the half Friday off helps increase social wellbeing and family ties. The new system will accelerate the country’s economic activities and bring bigger business returns through ensuring smooth financial, economic and trade transactions with the rest of the world.

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