THE COUNTRY LOCAL CULTURE,
CUSTOMS, AND ETIQUETTE
Geography and Nature
A Birth of a Country
The UAE Rulers (Sheikhs)
The Original Citizens
Immigration, Career and
Do and Don’t
Driving In UAE
Holidays and Anniversaries
GEOGRAPHY: United Arab Emirates is
considered a Middle East GCC Country bordered
by Saudi Arabia to the west and south and Oman
to the east.
NATURE: Most of the land is sandy, Weather
temperatures can reach 45 Celsius in summer and
10 Celsius in winter.
The Original citizens called Badu
All the Emirates are located at the coast.
Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan, First Governor of UAE called rulers for union and
announced the constitution of country on 2nd December, 1971,
Includes 200 islands and the capital city is Abu Dhabi which is the largest city
Each Emirate has it’s local rules & regulations, but under the umbrella of the
THE MAIN NATURAL SOURCES: oil, natural gas, re-exports, fish, dates, P,
The official local currency is Dirham (AED. or DHS.) and Fils, it costs 3.67
against 1.00 US Dollar
The mother language is Arabic and main religion is Islam.
H.H. Sheikh Khalif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE President and Ruler of Abu
H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and
Ruler of Dubai
H.H. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al-Qasimi, Ruler of Sharjah
H.H. Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi, Ruler of Ajman
H.H. Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammad Al Sharqi, Ruler of Fujairah
H.H. Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah
H.H. Sheikh Rashid bin Saud bin Rashid Al Mualla, Ruler of Umm Al
Citizens are named Local or Mwaten
They are 1,170,000 out of 9,205,651 according to the Census
Centers Survey of 2013
They greet people with (Al Salamu Alaykum)
They welcome guests with coffee and dates at home and Majlis
Men kiss each others noses and shack hands when they meet,
Old Generations (Women dress)
Recent women wear (Abaya)
Old and recent citizens wear Kandoora &
UAE always welcome expatriates coming from around the
world and encourage them to invest, work, live, study, in
entertainment and tourism.
Manpower relations are operated by The Ministry of Labour.
202 Nationalities are living in UAE excluding Emirate.
UAE Culture Is Rooted In Arabic And Islamic Tradition
It is built on rich history and traditions, culture and heritage.
Wearing anything goes? one can walk around in shorts and flip-flops just
about anywhere but do not walk around without your top off
Wearing clothes which are too revealing like cut and short pants for men
and women, people have been refused entrance to public places in Abu
Dhabi and Dubai such as courts and malls, Dress appropriately in public.
Wear swimwear on the beaches and at the pool only. As a general rule
women should cover shoulders and knees. This is especially important
Do not wear clothing that exposes stomach and transparent.
It’s not allowed to do chargeable private parties at home or yard.
Taking of photographs can be sensitive, especially taking
photographs of people; ask permission and avoid secure areas
(airport, military camps, official buildings, some shops… etc).
Respect local cultures and traditions of the UAE.
Sexual harassment or randomly addressing women in public or
taking their photos without permission is strictly prohibited.
Offensive language, spitting and aggressive behavior (including
hand gestures) are viewed very seriously and can result in
Holding hands for married couples is tolerated but kissing and
hugging are considered offences against public decency.
Smoking is forbidden in government areas, offices and shopping
Be conscious of the volume of your TV or music during prayer hours.
Men should always show respect to women, general courtesy should be applied.
Men should never visit, attend or go to places that are marked 'For Ladies Only'.
As a male, do not stare at or compliment females.
Do not enter an elevator if you are a male and a single female is inside.
Men can shake hand while greeting with a male, but never with a female, unless
she offers her hand first. Females usually also shake hand between themselves.
Keep in mind that the concept of personal space is different than in the West. A
man should not be surprised if he is touched, hugged or kissed by other men.
Although this concept does not apply to male–female relation, and any public
physical contact between the two should be avoided!
Remember that holding hands by two men is a sign of brotherly bonding, Friends
of the same sex kissing on the cheek, doing ‘nose kissing’ or hugging in public is
normal, it is a sign of friendship.
Remember that sexual relations outside of marriage are illegal and carry a prison
Do not show any threatening gestures.
Do not lose your patience or temper; it is a sign of being rude and of a weak
A hand signal such as fingers joined together with a thumb means ‘wait a minute’, or
it can also be a sign of impatience.
Remember to touch, pass or accept anything with your right hand.
Accept hospitality by accepting offers of drink, coffee or food.
Remove your shoes when entering an Arab house.
Remember that after the meal, if coffee is served it is a sign that it is time to go.
Do not enter a mosque and do not touch the Qur’an if you are not a Muslim.
Do not comment or criticize any religion, ruling families, local dress or traditions of
the local people.
Try not to express admiration for another person’s possessions as an owner may
offer this item to you.
Legal drinking age is 21 and license must be available to buy
alcohol from shops and bars for non muslims.
Drinking Alcohol while Driving cause Dhs. 20,000 fine
and/or jail sentence & black points.
HOLY MONTH OF RAMADAN: is a very holy, precious
and religious month for Muslim Society, Muslims fast 30
days, Fasting start after Al Fajer prayer call till AlGhareb
Prayer call, Muslims shouldn’t eat, drink and smoke till
Magreb prayer call.
Work timings at Public & Private Sectors reduced by
two hours generally.
Don’t eat, drink or smoke in public in Ramadan. This
includes consuming anything in your car or taxi.
Eid Al Fitr & Al Adha
Its preferable to greet your connections at these
occasions by visits, call or sms
During the Holy Month of Ramadan traditional Arabian
hospitality is active all over UAE and there's no better
place to experience Iftar than Ramadan tents; Rich
people build Ramadan Tents in huge yards and in
mosques inviting poor people to break their fast for free.
All UAE citizens celebrate this anniversary with fire
works, snow spays, decorate cars and design special
clothes and accessories, expatriates share this ceremony
with locals in public streets.
Government announce 2nd and 3rd of Dec. as a holiday
for public and private sectors