Optimistic about the fast-approaching Eid weekend, retailers in Dubai, who will remain open 24 hours are gearing up to deal with customer rush. Some say they may hire temporary staff, if need be, while most who will make do with current workers will dole out overtime pay.
This is good news for staff in malls, who are looking for some extra money. Just ask Meg Mirna, a Filipina, working in a big hypermarket in Dubai. “I’ll have to work longer hours during the Eid holidays but our overtime has been announced. I’ll be working hard but will get the extra money I really need as Christmas is fast approaching and I have to send home extra money for the kids,” she said.
Her friend, another Filipina working at a restaurant, will not get any extra money as she will not be doing longer shifts. “I’d prefer overtime but then I’ll work my normal hours and get normal pay. I’ve heard that more people will be hired as temporary workers,” she said.
As the Eid weekend is just 10 days away, many retailers are gearing up for the holiday rush as residents will be out at late hours and a record number of tourists are expected in Dubai.
Ashish Panjabi, COO of Jacky’s Electronics is looking at doing with his current staff at a higher pay. “We plan to use existing staffing for the new timings as it is only for weekends during Eid that we need to be open for 24 hours. We normally work on a shift basis so it only means we extend shift hours and pay a little more in the form of overtime,” he told ‘Emirates24|7’.
Some retailers believe they can manage with their existing staff. “We have a Lulu hypermarket in Arabian Centre so that will remain open. We work in shifts and can manage during the Eid weekend with normal working hours for the staff so there will be no overtime,” said Nand Kumar, Head of Corporate Communications, Lulu Hypermarket Group.
“We are expected to work longer but we have no news about our overtime money but I’m sure there will be something for us. The tips also make a big difference to our daily wages,” said a waiter at a restaurant in one of the malls in the city.
According to Article 67 of the Labour Law, where the work circumstances require a worker to work more than the normal number of hours, any period worked in excess shall be treated as overtime, for which the worker shall receive the wage stipulated for his normal working hours, plus a supplement of at least 25 per cent of that wage.
Article 68 says where the work circumstances require a worker to work overtime between 9 pm and 4 am, he shall be entitled in respect of such overtime to the wage stipulated for his normal working hours, plus a supplement of at least 50 per cent of that wage.
Temporary work is also allowed as per law and is defined as an assignment that has to be carried out within a specified period of time.