UAE public holidays in 2023: 6-day weekend likely among three long breaks next year

In the country, a unified list for the public and private sectors ensures that employees get an equal number of days off

by

Sahim Salim

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Reuters file photo
Reuters file photo

Published: Sat 19 Nov 2022, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Sun 20 Nov 2022, 8:37 AM

The UAE has officially announced 2022’s last official holiday. A December 1-3 break —for Commemoration and National Days — and the Sunday off translate into a four-day weekend for most residents.

Lists of holidays help people plan their vacations better. In the UAE, a unified list for the public and private sectors ensures employees get equal number of days off.


The official list of holidays for 2023 is yet to be announced by the authorities. However, Khaleej Times has crunched some numbers to put together a list of the most probable dates of the holidays next year.

The Islamic holidays listed below are based on astronomical calculations and subject to change after moon-sighting.


January 1: Happy New Year!

The first official holiday of the new year is on the first day of 2023. January 1, 2023, however, falls on a Sunday — which means no additional day off. Those who don’t enjoy a Sunday weekend will get a day off to mark the new year, too.

Eid Al Fitr

This Islamic festival gives one of the longest breaks of the year. And in 2023, it is likely to mean a four-day weekend for residents.

As per the Hijri calendar, the dates are from Ramadan 29 to Shawwal 3.

According to astronomical calculations, the holy month of Ramadan is likely to begin on March 23, 2023, and last for 29 days. The first day of Eid Al Fitr is expected to fall on Friday, April 21. That means the break is likely to begin on Thursday, April 20, (corresponding date on Islamic calendar: Ramadan 29) and end on Sunday, April 23.

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Arafah day and Eid Al Adha

This break offers the longest number of leaves for 2023. The dates on the Islamic calendar are Dhul Hijjah 9 to 12.

Ibrahim Al Jarwan, chairman of the Board of Directors of the Emirates Astronomy Society, expects the Day of Arafah to fall on Tuesday, June 27. Eid Al Adha falls on the next day — Wednesday, June 28.

This means the break is likely to be from Tuesday, June 27, to Friday, June 30. If this is indeed the case, those with Saturday-Sunday off get a six-day weekend.

Hijri New Year (Islamic New Year)

Muharram 1 marks the first day of the Hijri Islamic calendar. The day off on the Gregorian calendar will be announced closer to the date.

Prophet Muhammad’s birthday

The Prophet Muhammad's (PBUH) birthday is observed on the 12th of Rabi Al Awwal — the third month of the Islamic calendar. The day off on the Gregorian calendar will be announced closer to the date.

Commemoration, National Days

The UAE marks Commemoration and National Days with a combined break from December 1 to 3. In 2023, that makes it a three-day weekend: Friday to Sunday.

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