Monday, July 8, 2013

Ramadan Kareem to one and all!

Ramadan or Sawn is one of the five pillars of Islam in which all Muslims are expected to follow. During this season, most Muslims will wake up just before sunrise to eat a meal or some food. This is called Suhoor. They will not eat or drink anything after this until sunset when they break the fast in a meal called , Iftar. All members of the family gather together to share this most important meal of the day.
In a day or two , the Holy Month of Ramadan will begin and so we thought we would put out some reminders on the proper etiquette for the non-Muslims visiting Dubai at this time. 
Food / Fasting
 No eating, drinking, or smoking in public   -   This is a strict rule and is enforced all throughout the UAE.    Violators could face huge fines and even jail time.  
Your car is considered a public area so be sure not to eat, smoke or drink in your car also.
Most of the Food outlets at the malls will be closed during the day. Only restaurants and cafes with special license can serve food for non fasters in a screened off area.Most hotels have an outlet open during the day and here at Marco Polo we have it at the Ballroom I. Open 24/7.
Modest clothing is key to dressing in Ramadan for women as well as men. Be sure to cover shoulders, knees and chest areas and men are to refrain from wearing short pants.
No playing of loud music in your home or car.  all nightclubs and live music venues are closed during this time and only very soft music is played in restaurants. Playing loud music is seen as a sign of disrespect.

No public displays of affection and abstain from swearing and using offensive language or gestures in public as Ramadan is a season of piety and peace.
Be patient with people who are fasting . It is tough and it is hot out there.

Learn a few Ramadan greetings such as "Ramadan Kareem" or "Ramadan Mubarak" , meaning  " May you have a generous/blessed Ramadan."
These guidelines are to remind us all to show respect in the beliefs of our Muslim brothers and sisters in this Ramadan season. Let us always remember that we are visitors here and must abide by the practices of the land.

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