Business Etiquette in the UAE

Current business visionaries understand that adherence to business behavior and business communication morals is one of the keys to effective administration and is a pointer of demonstrable skill. If you have foreign partners, at that point, you should likewise know the essential guidelines of etiquette in outside nations to direct your business abroad effectively. 

When arranging meetings in the UAE, recollect this is a Muslim nation with its principles and standards. To not get into an embarrassing situation, one should consider the social attributes and rules of the business etiquette standard for the Arab world. Here are our top etiquette tips for exploring business in the UAE:

Respect the culture & the law of the land

Always know about the traditions and culture of the spot when you are in another nation. Being an Islamic country, the UAE’s neighborhood customs and sensitivities are unique concerning those in any other country in the world. Nonetheless, there’s no uncertainty that it is a socially wealthy nation. The individuals of the UAE are inviting and neighborly.

Dress Modestly

Most Emirati men wear a kandura, a lower leg length white shirt, and most Emirati ladies wear an abaya, dark streaming overflowing clothing covering most of the body. 

The modesty of your attire is essential in the Middle East – for ladies and men. Be careful not to wear revealing garments, including open-toed shoes, and to cover your shoulders, arms, and legs. 

Men: A suit and a tie are appropriate. Darker colors are seen as more expert. 

Ladies: Wear either a suit or a skirt with the trim beneath the knee. It’s redundant for non-Muslim ladies to wear the hijab or headscarf, except if you intend to visit a strict site during your excursion.


Arabic is the most regularly communicated language, trailed by English, French, Russian, Hindi, etc. The majority of the public part procedures and authority administrative work are in Arabic. In the event that you plan to have an extended remain or work responsibility in the UAE, it will be useful to gain proficiency with the language. English is additionally generally spoken by the nation over.


Recognize and welcome the most senior individual in the room first – doing so is an indication of the regard in the Muslim culture. It’s suitable for non-Muslims to welcome their Arab has with “assalamu alaikum,” which signifies “harmony arrive” and return the welcome with “wa alaikum as-salam,” signifying “harmony arrive, as well.” 

You ought to welcome every one of your Emirati partners separately. Be sure to only use the right hand as Muslims reserve the left hand for bodily cleanliness and think of it as unclean. Try not to be surprised if an associate holds your hand while driving you to a gathering room – clasping hands is normal among men and doesn’t convey similar meanings as it does in the West. After the handshake, you will need to put your right hand on your heart or chest as a badge of respect. In case you’re a man, abstain from warmly greeting a lady except if they broaden their hand first. The convention takes into consideration practically zero contact among people out in the open. A lady may notwithstanding, decide to hold out a sleeve-covered hand for you to shake.

Exchanging Businesses card

It is suggested that you print one side of your business card in Arabic. Remember that during gatherings, you should exchange business cards following presentations, giving it with two hands or with the right. While trading business cards, it’s ideal for giving and getting cards with your correct hand. Never offer or get anything with your left hand. On accepting the cards, don’t ward them off quickly; keep them on the table.      


Status is significant and must be recognized by utilizing the right title while tending to somebody. It is standard to use terms, for example, Sheik (boss) (or Sheikha for a lady), Sayed (Mr.), Sayeda (Mrs.), and so on. Remember that Arabs by and large location individuals by their first names, so John Smith will be tended to as Mr. John. Islam is profoundly instilled in the United Arab Emirates, and casual discussions are preferred with religious expression, for example, “inshallah,” which signifies “God willing.”

Businesses meetings

Individual connections are essential for working together in the UAE. Eye to eye gatherings is favored as calls and messages are, in some cases, seen as unoriginal. In the UAE, the workweek is usually Sunday through Thursday, and the weekend is Friday and Saturday. Privately owned businesses adopt “straight” or “split” shifts. For the most part, straight move organizations open up somewhere in the range of 7 AM and 9 AM and stay open for eight working hours, with a mid-day break lasting in any event for 30 minutes. Organizations known for their split movements start the working day somewhere in the range of 9 AM and 10 AM and close somewhere in the range of 8 PM and 9 PM, broken by three or four hours. Try to avoid meetings on Thursday nighttimes and Fridays since these are long periods of prayers. 

On the off chance that your conferences are to occur during the month of Ramadan, a significant religious occasion in the spring, know that it fits for you to partake in the strict fast. It is for everybody, including non-Muslims. Consistently, you are required to go without food and drink. Few of the larger hotels have exceptional areas for non-Muslims to eat and drink if necessary, although no liquor will be served.

Table etiquette

Muslims don’t drink alcohol. In the UAE, liquor is served in many restaurants, yet it may not be served in neighborhood cafés. On the off chance that alcohol isn’t offered, it is better not to request it. Additionally, you should accept additional servings during lunch/dinner, as this is viewed as impolite. Try not to arrange pork or items produced using it. Pigs are viewed as dirty creatures in Islam. If you are a left-handed individual, kindly note that you should eat just with your correct hand. In the UAE, it is standard to leave a 10% tip. If you are welcome to a supper at the place of a Muslim partner, make sure to remove your shoes. Wearing shoes inside is frequently viewed as an indication of disrespect.

Signs of attention

It is appropriate at most times, to make a little indication of respect (a blessing) to your partner after an invitation to go into the house. This can be a book or a keepsake from the company. Remember that a gift related to your partner’s interest and leisure activities is a good thought. Your Arab partner will welcome this indication of attention.

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