UAE Culture

According to, the state religion in the UAE is Islam, so visitors must respect local traditions. An example of such respect will be the residents of the country themselves, who paid attention to the Orthodox in the form of a couple of churches in Dubai. Using simple rules, it will not be difficult for a tourist to spend a comfortable vacation in an eastern country. To do this, it is enough not to invade the personal space of those who pray and to know what cannot be done in the United Arab Emirates.

Strict rules

The first rule for visitors is modest clothing. It applies to both sexes. It is recommended to avoid outfits that show large areas of exposed skin. Women should give up deep necklines and mini. For walks and excursions to religious locations, it is better for men to prefer a long-sleeved shirt and trousers.

In the Emirates, you can meet people praying everywhere. During prayer, you should not approach the believers, as well as film them on camera or crowd around. It is better not to focus on the process. When visiting a mosque, you should choose the most modest outfit and take socks with you – you will have to take off your shoes at the entrance, and you cannot enter the temple barefoot.

If the holiday falls on the fast of Ramadan, the tourist is advised to observe some traditions along with the locals. Believers do not take food and drink during daylight hours, and do not smoke. It is enough for visitors to observe a “fast” in public places, not having lunch or chewing gum outside the hotel.

It is important to follow the rules of conduct in the UAE. Otherwise, the visitor is threatened not only with reproachful views, but also with financial punishment. For a gross offense, you can get a fine and even deportation. Such crimes include distribution of drugs and sexual harassment of women. Ladies can report to the police even because of a grin or an obscene gesture addressed to them. The punishment for such actions includes everything from a fine of 60,000 dirhams and deportation to imprisonment.

Do not appear on the street in a state of intoxication. The strictest rules apply in Sharjah. There is a strict “dry law”, as well as a ban on any gambling. In the emirates, you should not behave cheekily – kissing in public is equated with a crime.

Politeness and communication

The greeting and farewell of the Arabs is accompanied by a handshake. At the same time, a Muslim woman herself will decide whether to give a hand for a shake. The gesture lasts a little longer than that of Europeans. The palm of people who are especially pleasant for you can be shaken with both hands. Sending and receiving items is only with the right hand.

Eastern peoples are proud of their hospitality traditions. Cultural features in the UAE allow you to invite a new friend to tea at home. Rejection is perceived as disrespectful. Tea or coffee, soft drinks will be treated in the house. All of them are served already with sugar, poured into small mugs without handles. Do not give up tea even on a hot day – herbal infusions are very refreshing in the heat.

When entering the house, you need to take off your shoes. And while sitting at a tea party, you can’t turn the soles of your feet towards the interlocutor. This is taken as an insult.

Restaurants and shops are closed on public holidays and weekends. Coming to the Emirates, you should know the schedule of such dates. And this is January 1, August 6, as well as December 2, 3, 25 and 26. This also includes the second half of every Thursday and all Fridays, when Islam provides for a day off.

The culture of the United Arab Emirates includes several more holidays with a “floating” date:

  • Eid al-Fitr is celebrated 3-4 weeks after Ramadan.
  • New Year according to the Islamic calendar.
  • Prophet’s birthday.

The date for each religious holiday is determined by the lunar calendar. Its annual cycle is 11 days shorter than the solar cycle.

When making purchases, it is important to recalculate the change and negotiate the cost even before the transaction. In the Emirates, locals treat tourists with disdain and may shortchange or cheat them.

The Russian language in the country is known only by hotel workers, but English is familiar to the population. Therefore, before the trip, you should learn a couple of phrases and take a pocket dictionary with you.

UAE Culture

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