An Easy Guide To Sending Gifts To UAE

16 May

Finding the perfect gift for friends, family, and business associates can feel daunting. We all want to do our very best to impress, and that’s hard even for people you know nearly as well as you know yourself. For someone miles away, it can feel impossible. When you’re navigating gift-giving culture in UAE, or the United Arab Emirates, if you’ve never visited (and even if you have), you likely have a ton of questions. To make things easy when you’re sending gifts to UAE, we’ve created a quick and easy cheat sheet for you to follow.

Sending Gifts To UAE - Rich Emirate culture covers gift-giving, too

What holidays do they celebrate in the UAE?

The first thing to keep in mind is that the UAE is actually a collective of seven emirates, Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Duabi, Fujairah, Ras al-Khaiman, Sharjah, and Umm al-Quwain. This collection of people have religions, holidays, and customs as diverse and varied as anywhere in the world. When in doubt, I strongly suggest asking your recipient what holidays are important to them. Most international and major religious holidays are celebrated here, but knowing which ones your recipients follow is part of picking out the right gift. From Ramadan to Eid, Diwali, and even Christmas, each holiday takes on its own flair in UAE.

However, this one is a big holiday for everyone: UAE National Day. Celebrated on December 2nd every year, it is a day to commemorate the union of the 7 emirates in the UAE. On December 2nd 1971 six of the seven agreed to join, with Ras al-Khaiman agreeing to join on February 10th 1972. To celebrate the unity and peace between these regions, it’s appropriate to send a delicious gourmet or fruit basket for an office or family to share.

What are the dos and don’ts of gift giving in the UAE?

The best gift to send to anyone in the UAE, hands down, is fruit. These sweet refreshing treats are appreciated no matter what the occasion. More specifically, date boxes are particularly beloved. These delicious regional treats have a lot of religious and cultural significance. Spiced or stuffed dates are particularly decadent gifts to send to business associates. While candied dates and other sweets or chocolates offer a bit of fun to any birthday gift or surprise you want to send to friends, family, and colleagues.

Sending Gifts To UAE - Dates and dried fruits are always welcomeSending Gifts To UAE - healthy fruit and nuts set off any celebration

Although any sweets and gourmet goods are fair game for gifts in the UAE, you’ll absolutely want to stay away from gifting alcohol. Couriers are not allowed to deliver alcohol in any of the Emirates, and for many of the religious in the area, alcohol is either off-limits or only permitted during particular times. Giving someone a bottle of spirits can easily be awkward and offensive, so it’s best to stick with edible gift baskets instead.

You will also want to keep in mind different business hours for offices in the UAE. Generally, the working week in the UAE is Sunday through Thursday. Offices also tend to try and be open during the cooler hours, particularly shops. So, it is not uncommon for business to closed during peak heat, typically 1 pm until 4 pm, local time. Because of this, it is very important that you have a working local phone number to provide to ensure a successful gift delivery.

Anything else you should know about gifts?

The very last thing you should know about sending gifts to UAE is that its people truly appreciate the thought and effort that goes into a gift as much as the item itself. A basket you pick out yourself, or a fruit arrangement made just for them means far more than any impersonal gift card. Be sure to include a sincere message to offer your respect and affection.

Now You’re Ready To Send A Gift To UAE:

– Check out our UAE Catalog.
– Learn about Eid al-Adha in: 5 Tips to Make Your Eid al-Adha Gift Perfect.
– Share this blog with your friends using your favorite social media button!

A foodie, nerd, book lover, and eager taste tester. I’m a night owl with a need to expand my knowledge of other cultures and places to give myself better perspective.

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