Crescent sighting Image Credit: Sabq

Dubai: Ramadan may still be a few months away, but that's not going to stop astronomers from making their predictions.

The first day of Ramadan is traditionally marked by the sighting of the crescent moon with the naked eye, and is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar.

Although it is generally customary to wait for the official announcement of Ramadan by the moon-sighting committee in Saudi Arabia, astronomers have estimated when the first of the Holy Month is likely to fall.

Ebrahim Al Jarwan, General Supervisor at Sharjah Planetarium, said that according to calculations, Ramadan in the UAE is most likely to fall on Monday, May 6.

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“The crescent will be formed on Sunday May 5 at 2.46am, but will not be able to be seen after sunset. That is why then, that the month of Ramadan will start the next day on Monday as per the moon-sighting custom,” he said.

Al Jarwan also said that Muslims will be fasting for 13 hours and 10 minutes during the first week of Ramadan, and will gradually extend to 13 hours and 40 minutes by the end of the month.

Temperatures throughout May will range from 23-41 degrees Celsius, while areas across the country will reach a humidity level of up to 75 per cent.

During Ramadan, working hours are reduced by two hours in the UAE, according to the Federal Authority for Government Human Resources.

School timings are also reduced and motorists usually get advantage of free parking during prayer times from 6pm to 8pm.