Friday, November 10, 2023

Weddings in the UAE: Traditions And Peculiarities

The United Arab Emirates is a fairy tale in reality, an oasis among endless sands, a dream of many tourists. But it’s curious how the weddings go there? We will tell you about this and other interesting facts about marriage in the Emirates below.

Weddings in the UAE are very interesting and unusual for us. Even the most modern and luxurious ceremony wedding retains centuries-old unique traditions.


In the Emirates, women live separately from men, so it is not surprising that parents choose a soul mate for their children. The decision about the marriage is made by the father as the head of the family.

The bride is forbidden to see the groom before the wedding, especially to communicate with him. She can only know something about him and only from his closest relatives.

Since up to 9 years old boys and girls can still play together, they often draw knowledge from childhood memories.

Wedding preparations

After a successful engagement, the servants, dressed in holiday clothes, go to the homes of relatives and friends, treating them to sweets and dishes, while wedding invitations are handed out.

Almost every 13th family in the UAE is a millionaire. Therefore local weddings cost an average of $ 80 to $ 100,000.

Guest invitation

The scale and number of guests at the Arab wedding are truly impressive. Even for the most modest celebration in the circle of relatives and friends, up to eight hundred people are invited, not to mention the weddings of Arab sheikhs.

The number of guests often reaches several thousand. Family and friendships are highly honored in the UAE. And they believe that the scale and grandeur of the event are directly related to the future happiness of the newlyweds.


Pre-wedding period

In the last week before the wedding, the girl spends in her secluded room, being in modest clothes. The Arabs believe that by the holiday it will become even more beautiful. A wedding dress, as a rule, is sewn to individual order by eminent fashion designers who turn this outfit into a real work of art.

In addition, today in the UAE there are many different beauty salons for women, SPA centers like, massage rooms, etc. that can help her to look like a real princess.

The groom, in turn, spends the last three days in a close circle – family, and friends.

During this period, a dowry is collected for the bride (which remains her personal property), and the groom, like all his relatives, showers his future wife with gifts in the form of jewelry with precious stones, various fabrics, hats, silk scarves, and many others.

Another tradition is that a wedding ring is worn on a girl’s finger by a close relative of the groom.

The marriage is considered valid only after the wedding ceremony has taken place. It happens that a marriage contract is also signed before this.

Ransom of the bride

Many countries in the Western world have completely abandoned this tradition or made it part of the holiday entertainment program. But the UAE still honors this ancient tradition – the groom’s side pays a ransom to the bride’s family to compensate for the loss of labor, as has been done historically. 

The amount can reach tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars.

A moment of celebration

The peculiarity of the wedding feast in the Emirates is as follows – in fact, these are two separate celebrations, separately for the bride and groom. According to Muslim customs, during a wedding feast, the couple and all the guests are accordingly separated, it can be two celebrations in separate halls. 

Alcohol is not served at Muslim weddings, but the celebration does not become boring from this, but on the contrary, takes place in a bright and festive atmosphere.

Since women celebrate the celebration separately, they may not cover their heads with a headscarf, and with dancing and fun, the girls have a positive rest. In the middle of the hall, there is a bride who looks like a royal throne.

At the end of the evening, the groom, along with his father, as well as a witness, goes to the women’s hall, the ladies are notified of this in advance in order to have time to cover their heads. Further, after the festivities are over, the groom takes the bride to him.

The wedding night

Sex before marriage in the UAE is strictly prohibited and severely punished. Purity and innocence are respected in this country. That is why the first wedding night for the Arabs is a very sacred and significant event. 

But since the bride and groom may not know each other before the wedding, they have the right to dispose of this time at their own discretion. For example, chat to get to know each other better.


A wedding in the Emirates is a grandiose event that once again confirms the generosity and complacency of the Arab people. We can firmly say that the Arabs do not spare money for this bright family holiday because for the family arranging this celebration, a gorgeous wedding is a sign of wealth and prosperity. Even if you happen to find yourself at such an event, you will be greeted as the closest person and cordially offered to share the festive feast.

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