Dubai, UAE

UAE weekend: Saturday-Sunday, what about Friday brunch?

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) will switch its weekend to Saturday and Sunday. This comes as the Gulf country looks to bring itself more in line with the rest of the world.

The UAE’s government said it will adopt a 4-1/2 day working week; with Friday — a holy day in Islam — being a half day, from January 1.

The UAE and the rest of the Gulf nations currently have a Sunday-Thursday working week.

Investors have said a Monday-Friday working week could attract more foreign capital. It will also boost liquidity on Dubai and Abu Dhabi’s stock markets.

When the UAE government announced a new working week and a new weekend on Saturdays and Sundays for all federal government employees, one of the first questions everyone had was: what will happen to Friday brunch? Similarly, what will happen to ladies’ nights in the UAE and other weekday promotions?

Friday brunch is a ritual for so many people across the emirates, from Abu Dhabi to Dubai. So, how will the new UAE policy impact everyone’s most delicious day? Especially with there being a four-and-a-half-day working week and school week?

Time Out spoke with experts about how they see the United Arab Emirates working week switch impact brunch and food deals when it takes effect on Saturday January 1, 2022.

The UAE’s new work week schedule could lead to a huge rise in afternoon and evening brunches on Fridays. And a host of new Saturday brunches, and that is just the start of things.

Brian Voelzing, from Restaurant Secrets Inc, exclusively told Time Out: “I believe most restaurants will move their brunch to Saturday.”

He continued: “In light of the new half working day on Fridays however, I can also see many restaurants offering a late Friday brunch as well to engage with customers looking to relax post-work.”

Hotels and restaurants and more F&B businesses will consider the UAE weekend switch in their promotions and activities; whatever form it takes. And they will be striving for mass appeal.

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