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"It's different but more productive to have a 4.5-day week."

“It’s different but more productive to have a 4.5-day week.”

Safia Al Shehhi, 37, works in a training institute for bank employees in the United Arab Emirates. When DN reaches her at lunchtime on Friday, she’s on her way out of work. It just finished the first working week of the new year – the first week in which the UAE works for 4.5 days. The new times also apply to schools.

Safia Al Shehhi worked for the first time on Holy Friday. The UAE has introduced a system of 4.5 days a week where you work until lunch on Friday, before taking the weekend – and weekends now include Sunday.

Photo: private

Until the end of the year, the weekend consisted of Friday and Saturday in the UAE, but to adapt to the Western world, the Gulf country introduced a 4.5-day week. Monday through Thursday work days are now eight hours, one hour longer than usual, and Friday 4.5 hours.

– It felt different and it was a little more difficult. Safiya Al-Shehhi explains and continues: We have to go to work early, at 7.30, and we have to go home after half an hour:

– But at the same time it was more fun and productive. I knew I had to complete tasks faster. International companies can also contact us on Fridays now.

The federal government has encourage The employer should be flexible when it comes to telecommuting on Fridays.

One of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates, Sharjah, has gone a step further than the other emirates and will be out of work throughout Friday.

Read more:

UAE shortens workweek to boost productivity

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