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Understanding Ramadan Rules & Etiquette

In just a few days the holy month of Ramadan will be upon us, in this wonderful time of the year Muslims across the world will begin fasting and enjoy Ramadan traditions with family and friends.

If you are new to the UAE, or perhaps want to understand the rules to be observed during this holy month, we have compiled a guide below to help you be respectful and also enjoy this magical month.

Ramadan falls in the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, this is when the first parts of the Qur'an were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Muslims abstain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk, as fasting is known as the one of the five pillars of Islam.

Dress respectfully

Just like anytime of the year in the UAE, dressing respectfully in public areas is a must. Especially in Ramadan we must be particularly considerate and cover shoulders and knees in loose-fitting clothing.


During Ramadan eating and drinking in public areas is not allowed. This also includes chewing gum and smoking. In recent years many malls are allowed to keep restaurants open during fasting hours for non-muslims.

According to Article 313 of the UAE law, if someone is found to be breaking this rule they can face a month in jail and also be fined 2000 AED.


During Ramadan, it is important to be respectful in regards to playing music, loud music in public places and cars is not allowed. Also dancing in public is prohibited.

Public Affection and Behaviour

It is important to remain respectful to other people during Ramadan, public displays of affection such as kissing or hugging are not allowed, along with any form of aggressive behavior. Additionally swearing or any kind of blasphemy is considered very offensive and could lead to a fine or even jail time.


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