Eating Etiquette in the UAE

Business Discussions During Meals: Meals are often used as opportunities for business discussions. It’s important to follow the lead of your host in such situations. If they initiate business talk, feel free to engage, but it’s usually best to wait for them to bring it up.

Utensil Placement: In terms of utensil etiquette, when you have finished eating, place your cutlery facing upward in the center of your plate. This signals to the server that you are done with your meal.

Using Hands for Eating: A crucial etiquette point is to avoid using your left hand for eating. This is a common cultural norm in many places, where the left hand is considered unclean.

Toasts: In informal settings, toasts are a way to celebrate or mark the occasion. A simple raising of the glass and saying “Cheers” is a common way to participate in a toast.

Tipping Practices: Regarding tipping, it’s customary to leave a tip of about ten percent over and above the service charge. This is a way to show appreciation for good service.

Eating Outside: You can eat outside in Dubai. The city offers a wide range of outdoor dining options, including restaurants with outdoor seating and rooftop dining experiences. Many beaches and resorts offer outdoor dining areas, including restaurants and cafes with beachfront or poolside seating.