Ramadan Guide for Non-Muslim, Do's and Dont's


Ramadan is the annual observance of our brothers and sisters in Islam to which the revelation of Qur'an was made to Prophet Mohammed.

This begins at the ninth month of the Islamic Lunar Calendar and a visual sighting of the last full moon. The moon sighting is done by a committee from Makkah in Saudi Arabia.

"Will likely to start on 27th of May and expected to end on 24th of June."

As part of the 5 Pillars of Islam, Muslims all over the world abstain from all physical needs during the daylight such as food, drink, and more. This is the time to concentrate and give attention to God and observe sacrifice and self-discipline.

Fasting is a way of purifying or cleansing one's self and soul form the distraction of everyday life and redirect attention to God. Not only in eating or drinking, it is also a time to self-evaluate of the wrong doings in speech and actions. It's not about losing weight.

It is a time to promote generosity. This is also a reminder of other people's hardships that they've gone through-- hunger, poverty, homelessness, etc.

As an expatriate living in the UAE, it is my duty to respect the tradition and observations done on the holy month.

Here are some things to ponder upon when you are with your Muslims friends, co-workers, in public, or like me living in a Muslim country.

ETIQUETTE for Ramadan, a Non-Muslim Can TAKE NOTE Of

#1 Dress Code

Dress appropriately and conservatively. Men and women must wear clothes that cover up to their knees and shoulders.

#2 Refrain from Eating and Smoking

Be considerate to those who observe. In UAE, smoking will land you fines for doing so in public. If you're not observing Ramadan, don't eat or drink around people who does.

#Although, if you are invited by a Muslim friend to Iftar, DO NOT REFUSE.

#3 Be Respectful

When someone is fasting, he or she may have some moody moments, please sympathize. Do greet them with "Ramadan Kareem". Refrain from speaking offensive language or gestures.

#4 Avoid Driving in Sun Down

During this time, people are breaking their 12-hours of fast (no eat and drink) and they go to Iftar celebrations. Roads and streets will be busier, so if not necessary, don't add up to it.

#5 No PDA (Public Display of Affection)

I feel that UAE itself has limitation on showing affections in public. But during Ramadan, avoid showing off your affections in public for this is an offence. This is disrespectful and you might be called by authorities.

#6 Do Refrain Loud Music

Being happy is fine, but celebrating with loud music and sounds is not respectful during Ramadan. It is a time of solemn peace as our brothers and sisters join in a spiritual reflection.

Ramadan will likely to start on 27th of May, 2017 and expected to end by 24th of June, based on the  moon sighting reports.

Usually, working hours in UAE is reduced by two hours.

Ramadan Kareem!


  1. Learning about the do's and don'ts of Muslims during Ramadan is helpful especially if you're traveling to a Muslim country. We went to Malaysia before during Ramadan and were surprised when there was only one staff serving the reception counter of the hotel. It turned out that most of them were on leave and the remaining ones had to go home early.

  2. Wow! I did not know very much about this before reading and now I feel I have learned a lot. Thank you for sharing!

  3. This is really important to know about the importance of Ramadan and he dos and donts. It's a way to respect their culture and practices.

  4. Thanks for sharing the dos and don'ts. I think the practices are not as strict in Singapore, as it is a multiracial country. But majority of the people are quite understanding of one another's rituals.

    P.S. Indeed it's not about losing weight, because the lack of water/ hydration will actually result in weight gain!

  5. Ramadan Kareem!
    Indeed a very useful post for non-muslims! No matter where we are it is very necessary to respect the local customs!

  6. Ramadan Kareem! Good to know and learn about all the cultures and customs.


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