Eid holiday dates announced for private sector workers

Staff are set for a long break from work this month

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Private sector workers are set for a long weekend break later this month after Eid Al Fitr holiday dates were confirmed.

The Eid holiday will commence on Friday, May 22 – Ramadan 29 – and will continue until Shawwal 3 in keeping with the Islamic calendar.

Shawwal 3 will fall on Tuesday, May 26 or Wednesday, May 27, depending on whether Ramadan is made up of 29 or 30 days this year.

The break for private sector employees is in line with the holiday announced for public sector staff earlier this week.

The exact dates will be confirmed nearer to the time by the moon-sighting committee.

Eid Al Fitr is a key date in the Islamic calendar as it marks the end of Ramadan, a month of fasting.

On the eve of the 30th day of Ramadan, the moon-sighting committee, which was responsible for sighting the crescent moon to indicate the start of the holy month, reconvenes to look for the new crescent moon that signals the beginning of a new month.

If they spot the new moon, the following morning will be announced as the first day of Shawwal — Eid Al Fitr.

Eid Al Fitr 2020: Here's what you need to know

Eid Al Fitr 2020: Here's what you need to know

As with the holy month currently being observed in the Emirates, time-honoured Eid traditions are likely to be impacted by the coronavirus outbreak.

Although restrictions on travel and trade have been eased, festivities are set to be more restrained.

On the first day of Eid, Muslims would typically Muslims wake up just before dawn to perform Eid prayers at mosques.

During Eid, Muslims tend to wear new clothes and visit family and friends.

This year's celebrations are expected to be muted, with mosques still closed and gatherings remaining limited to groups of no more than five.

In recent years, it became common practice to travel during Eid but, this year, no one will be able to travel because flights have been grounded.