190514 eid al fitr
The first day of Eid Al Fitr ultimately depends on the observation of the moon with the naked eye. Image Credit: Pexels

Dubai: Eid is most likely to fall on a Sunday this year, an expert revealed to Gulf News.

Ebrahim Al Jarwan, General Supervisor at Sharjah Planetarium, explained that through calculations based on astronomy, one could determine when dates or months on the Islamic (Hijri) calendar fall.

In 2020, Ramadan started on April 24, Friday. According to Al Jarwan, Eid Al Fitr will most likely start on May 24.

“The new moon for the month of Shawwal 1441H will be on May 22 after sunset but it will not be visible to the naked eye, so according to my calculations, we will be able to see the new moon in the UAE on Saturday May 23. This means that the first day of Eid Al Fitr will fall on May 24, on a Sunday,” he said.

Holiday calendar

Eid Al Fitr marks the end of Ramadan and is a three-day celebration which is marked by public holidays in the UAE. Employees across private and public sectors are set to get three days off to mark the celebration based on a unified holiday calendar.

What is Eid Al Fitr?

If Eid, as Al Jarwan predicted, falls on May 24, residents could be up for a 5-day long weekend (for those who are off on Saturday).

Usually for long weekends, UAE residents spend time either travelling to nearby destinations or enjoying their time within the UAE shopping or visiting places with friends and family. The COVID-19 pandemic may change this trend in 2020.

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected human lives globally and religious observations in 2020 have been unique. Easter was celebrated at home with live-streamed mass and drive through services with participants wearing a now common adornment – a face mask.